Body Blog: Holler at Alternative Medicine

I’ve always hated going to the doctor. I vividly recall being held down my 3 nurses at age five, so that they could inject me with numerous vaccinations. I kicked; I screamed; I felt like I was being personally invaded.

That’s still what I think about traditional medicine: It can be severely invasive. Are objects and chemicals meant to be stuck into our bodies? To me, it just seems a bit unnatural, not to mention painful.

Since establishing my own set of ideas about life, society and health, I’ve become immensely involved with holistic healing. I know, I sound like a total kook; but this stuff is not only interesting, it’s also effective. I swear.

Our whole lives we have been poked and prodded, whether it be due to an injury or simply because we are female. Every sickness we’ve had has been treated alone as if the body is incapable of attacking the problem itself. Truth be told, our bodies definitely need some assistance with the big bad ones, like cancer, heart disease, etc. But not in the way we’ve learned. Evidence is mounting that diet and lifestyle are the best cures for our worst afflictions.

The latest scientific studies, according to www.altmed.com, show that “simple choices that we make in our lifestyle — what we eat, how we respond to stress, whether or not we smoke cigarettes, how much exercise we get, and the quality of our relationships and social support — can be as powerful as drugs and surgery.” I think this makes so much sense. Just think how amazing you feel post-workout, when laughing with friends, or when hugging your mom … All of that is healing.

“When you eat a healthier diet, quit smoking, exercise, meditate, and have more love in your life, then your brain receives more blood and oxygen, so you can think more clearly, have more energy, and need less sleep. Your face gets more blood flow, so your skin glows more and wrinkles less. Your heart gets more blood flow, so you have more stamina and even begin to reverse heart disease,” says Deeprak Chopra, the author of more than 50 books on mind, body and spirit.

So how can you get more holistic? Yoga, acupuncture, and ayurveda.

Yoga: Promotes Stress-relief and Weight-loss.
The most familiar form of non-traditional physical exercise has incredible benefits. Aside from increasing flexibility, lubrication in joints, and blood supply to various parts of the body, yoga harmonizes the mind and body, as well as creates calmness and emotional balance. I think most people brush it off as a non-workout because there’s very little sweating involved. But try to see it as a whole body therapy, a way of transforming yourself from the inside out. This practice allows you to develop a different relationship with your body, one that makes you appreciate it more for all this it does. When this happens you’re much less likely to shovel cheeseburgers and pastries into your mouth.

Acupunture: Relieves Anxiety, Insomnia, Menstrual Cramps, Back Pain
This form of Chinese medicine consists of inserting and manipulating fine filiform needles into specific points in the body. This technique is used to re-balance the energy pathways located throughout the body. It may sound a little crazy, but studies show that regular treatment relieves back pain better than the more traditional methods.

Ayurveda: Promotes Digestive Health
Ayurveda is defined as a system of healing based on homeopathy and naturapthy, with an extensive use of herbs. Yeah, sounds a bit out there, right? According to it’s philosophy, “universal life force manifests as three different energies, or doshas, known as vata, pitta, and kapha,” says Yoga Journal. What that means is that everyone has their own nutritional needs and this holistic method allows you to fine tune exactly what you should be eating for your body. To learn more about this go to YogaJounrnal.com; they have some really informative articles.

So who knows? Maybe giving alternative medicine a try will open your world and improve chronic problems you’ve been experiencing for years. Or maybe not. But why not give it shot? Pun intended.

Scientific Studies That Make You Say “Duh”
Scientific Studies That Make You Say “Duh”
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