The World Health Organisation states, “health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. In more recent years, this statement has been modified to include the ability to lead a “socially and economically productive life.” (ref: WHO definition of health)
But most experts argue that Health is not a state, but rather a spectrum, where one end of the spectrum is death and the other end of the spectrum is complete health. Most of us tend to fluctuate into states that are in between the two stated extreme bands.
The interest in Holistic Medicine:
In recent years there has been a plethora of new diseases such as AIDS, other viral infections like SARS and BIRD FLU, an increase of Stress related diseases such as Diabetes, Coronary artery disease, and an ever increasing list of psychiatric illnesses.
Faced with ever increasing nuisances of modern day diseases, Allopathic as a system has been found woefully inadequate. Many patients feel that the allopathic physician is very impersonal and treats only a particular diseased organ instead of treating the patient as a whole entity.
Dissatisfied with the Allopathic system, more patients are seeking treatment outside the allopathic system and resorting to Alternative systems of medicine.
What is Holistic Medicine?
Holistic medicine is not a single system like the Allopathic system. It is a Complementary system of Medicine that aims to treat the individual as a whole; MIND BODY AND SOUL. Here the practitioner aims to treat the whole individual, rather than one diseased part of the body.
Holistic medicine is based on the premise that for a body to be healthy, the mind should be at in harmony and tranquil so that the soul force may express itself throughout the individual and result in positive and vibrant health.
Holistic Health Practitioner may combine, Nutritional therapy, massage therapy, counselling, herbs, reflexology, acupressure, yoga, Traditional Chinese Medicine, Homeopathy, Ayurveda, Reiki and many other holistic methods to gently ease the body into health from a diseased state.
The advantages that Holistic health practitioners offer:
- The therapies are gentle and generally free from side effects.
- There are a wide variety of therapies for the patients to choose from.
- The body is cleansed of toxins.
- The patient experiences a genuine sense of well being.
- Most Holistic health practitioners are very attentive and take a detail history and the patients feel that they are being properly heard.
- The patients feel better when they are treated as whole.
Holistic Health practitioners are becoming more sought after the world over despite the ridicule they constantly face from their learned allopathic colleagues. Unfortunately, more research has to be done to scientifically integrate the complementary systems with the mainstream orthodox system of medicine.