OPINION: Try ‘Old’ Medicine

      Holistic healing techniques have been used to treat illness for almost 5000 years. Holistic medicine, also known as complementary and alternative medicine, considers the whole body, including the mind and spirit. This practice, however, doubted, is valid and an incredibly safe and reliable healing method.

    Holistic healing started as a form of Traditional Chinese Medicine. This medicine is based on the theology that the human body is capable of healing itself. One of the practices in this method is called herbal medicine, which focuses on plants and their extracts to improve and maintain wellness. By ingesting herbal supplements or switching up a diet, herbal medicine has been credited with relieving conditions such as high cholesterol, depression, memory loss, and migraines. Herbal medicine is also credited as a natural and reliable means for weight loss. Various studies from 2011 and 2012 have provided support for herbal medicines healing ability, specifically with allergy management, anxiety and depression related to PTSD, pre-hypertension, and military service-related chronic pain.

    Another holistic form of medicine is called homeopathic medicine, or homeopathy. The basic belief behind homeopathy is in the phrase “like cures like”. In other words, what brings on symptoms in a healthy person can treat an illness with similar conditions in small doses by triggering the body’s natural defense. For example, since red onion can make eyes water, it is used as a remedy for allergies in small doses. Homeopathic practitioners weaken the ingredients by adding water or alcohol. Then, the mixture is potentiated by shaking it. It is this process of potentization which is credited with transfer the healing essence. An Australian study published a little over 10 years ago, found no conclusive evidence of homeopathic medicines healing ability, partially due to the fact that is it not currently possible to explain in scientific terms why a product containing little or no active ingredient can effectively treat a condition. Despite lack of scientific evidence, homeopathic remedies have been found to work on a more individual level. According to a Harvard study, homeopathic use has jumped 15% which could be tied to the fact that homeopathic products are now monitored and tested by the FDA.

    Holistic medicine is often invalidated by the fact that its effects are not currently accepted in our scientific culture. However, the majority of alternative viewpoints relating to science take centuries or more to be widely accepted. It was Nicolaus Copernicus’ idea that Earth rotates the sun that took over a century to be accepted. In addition to the lack of studies conducted on holistic medicine, it is widely hypothesized that the assumed majority of ancient published work on holistic medicine has been destroyed throughout the destruction of the Library of Alexandria.

    Holistic medicine should not be ruled out as an alternative or complementary medicine technique. Despite the lack of scientific evidence linked to holistic medicine, holistic medicine is known and trusted by individuals’ appraisal. This form of medicine has survived over 5,000 years of opposition, and that’s really why you cannot rule out a multitude of successful healing therapies. Implementing holistic medicine is as easy as picking up a new tea for anxiety or eating more aloe vera for weight loss. No matter the reservations, just try it.

Written by Tessa Stigler, Opinion Editor

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