The Most Popular Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine

In 2017, 70% of US adults believed in the positive effects of alternative therapies in health and medicine. Holistic health varies in that it can be physical, economic, linguistic, biochemical or even social in nature.

The range of application is wide and often encourages patient education on lifestyle changes and self-care to help promote wellness. This can include everything from exercise, relationship and spiritual counseling, and diet.

If you’ve been wondering if you should take a holistic approach to health, keep reading. We’re sharing with you the most popular alternative therapies available today.

Why People Are Choosing Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine

What is the difference between conventional medicine vs alternative medicine? Conventional medicine is based solely on scientific research.

It uses treatments proven to be effective through that research and doctors are trained to understand the body’s systems, diseases, and the best treatments. However, there can be serious side effects of conventional medicine.

Some common side effects with conventional medicines currently on the market are:

  • Swollen, black, or “hairy” tongue
  • Weight gain or loss
  • Allergic reaction
  • Paralysis
  • Lumps in your breast
  • Decreased bone marrow function
  • Live damage
  • Blood clots
  • Hallucinations

It’s important to carefully read about the side effects before you begin taking any form of medication. Be sure to tell your doctor all medications you’re currently taking, including supplements before they give you a prescription.

Conventional Medicine Starts After a Patient Becomes Sick

Conventional medicine is typically used after a person begins to exhibit symptoms. It’s a way to treat the person after they become sick, not to prevent them from becoming sick in the first place.

There are currently no practices used by traditional western medical treatments to prevent the disease from happening in the first place.

Holistic Health is More Comprehensive

Alternative medicine is based on the belief that it’s important to treat the whole person. Their body, mind, and spirit all play a vital part in maintaining overall health.

Treatments are less invasive. Many people turn to holistic medicine as a way to avoid surgery.

Prevents Illness

Also, holistic medicine is often used as a way to prevent illness before it becomes a problem. Some holistic approaches are backed by science while others are not.

However, those that aren’t backed by science often haven’t been studied enough to know if they’re effective.

The downside to Holistic Medicine

Even supplements have side effects. It’s important for you to talk to your doctor before you start taking any over-the-counter supplements.

Some of them may interact with other medications or supplements you’re taking. Also, supplements aren’t regulated by the FDA.

It’s important to do research to find out which brand’s of supplements provide the highest quality ingredients to help you maintain your health.

Types of Complementary and Alternative Medicine

What is holistic health care? There are many different types such as:


Many people believe you can help heal the body through touch. It’s also thought that if one area of the body is injured or sick, it affects the rest of the body, mind, and spirit.

Various types of manual manipulation are used to help heal the body such as:

  • Yoga
  • Taichi
  • Massage
  • Body movement therapies
  • Chiropractic and osteopathic medicine
  • Rolfing

Some of these methods such as yoga and Taichi can be practiced on your own. Others like massage and rolfing require a licensed practitioner to help you heal.

Diet and Herbs

Our western diet is filled with complex carbohydrates, sugar, fat, salt, and oils. Not only does our diet lead to obesity but to chronic diseases as well.

Many people now use a combination of herbal medicines, dietary supplements, and better nutrition to help prevent and heal chronic illnesses.

Eating a diet filled with fresh fruits and vegetables, which are known to be loaded with healthy vitamins and minerals are known to be an effective way to lose weight and help heal the body.

External Products Also Affect Our Health

And it’s not just what we’re putting into our bodies that can lead to illness, but the ingredients in our soaps, cleaning supplies, and shampoos. Many people are now turning to products that use only natural ingredients rather than harsh chemicals.

You can even use natural ingredients to help you clear up skin problems such as acne. These ingredients are also known to decrease wrinkles and improve skin firmness.

For anyone with acne prone skin, experts from Siorai suggest using a toner after your facial cleanser to make sure you’ve completely cleaned out your pores.


There is a powerful connection between the mind and body. Even the conventional medical world is in agreement on this.

Patients with good mental and emotional health heal faster and better. And it’s not uncommon for those who are ill to struggle with mental and emotional problems.

Many people turn to mind therapies such as:

  • Hypnosis
  • Meditation
  • Biofeedback

Meditation can be done on your own but you’ll need a practitioner to help with biofeedback and hypnosis.

The Power of Positive Thinking Heals

The power of positive thinking has been used to help heal bodies and create better lives for a long time. That’s because emotions and anxiety trigger hormones.

And stress is a huge factor in numerous ailments. Using mind and body healing in conjunction with one another aids in a speedier recovery.

External Energy Healing

External energy healing is the use of objects or other people to help improve a person’s health. Some examples of external energy therapy are:

External energy healing is great for people who aren’t comfortable with traditional forms of energy healing such as acupuncture or massage where needles or physical touch is used.


Another form of holistic healing engages the senses. Touch, sight, hearing, smell, and taste can all be used to help heal the body.

Some forms of therapies using the senses are:

  • Guided meditation and visualization
  • Music, art, and dance
  • Laughter yoga
  • Aromatherapy

Even something as simple as no longer watching the news, with its negative images can be a powerful way to help you reduce anxiety.

Traditional Forms of Alternative Medicine

Some of the more traditional forms of alternative medicine have been in practice for hundreds of years. Some examples are:

  • Acupuncture
  • Homeopathy
  • Ayurveda
  • Chinese medicine
  • Naturopathy

Acupuncture has been around for over 3,000 years. The first documentation goes back to 100 BCE.

Listen to Your Body

Whether you choose alternative therapies in health and medicine or the conventional route, it’s important to always listen to your body. Click here to learn the warning signs your body is trying to tell you.