With the world growing smaller through globalization, different views of medicine from different parts of the world are coming together to enhance our ability to fight disease and live optimally healthful lives. Two of the more common fields of medical thought are holistic medicine and allopathic medicine. While many people think these two medical approaches are contradictory, the holistic approach in medicine and allopathic medicine can actually work together to provide you with more options as you seek to live your healthiest life possible.
Holistic medicine approaches your health by looking at you as a whole person, mind, body and spirit and prescribing lifestyle, diet and activity plans that will promote overall health for the long term. Holistic doctors believe that the body contains natural self-healing abilities. They will teach you how to live your life in such a way that your body heals itself by using natural products and wise lifestyle choices. Holistic doctors consider the main enemies to a healthy life to be toxic chemicals from unnatural products, natural toxins that have built up in the body to an unhealthy proportion, misalignment of skeletal, muscular, or energetic properties in the body or lifestyle choices that introduce unnatural and unhealthful products and influences into the body. The main emphasis in this health model is prevention of illness and proactive healthful living, and most solutions offered involve using natural products or physical adjustments intended to return the body to its intended healthy state so the body can heal itself.
Allopathic medicine approaches your health by identifying diseases, illnesses and ailments and treating the symptoms caused by these problems with the use of drugs, surgery or lifestyle changes. These doctors believe bacteria, viruses and other foreign microbes are the main cause of disease, and they believe the best way to ward off ailments is through the use of drugs and lifestyle changes. Less of an emphasis is placed on treating parts of the body that are not giving a person trouble, and more emphasis is placed on treating the infection, illness or discomfort.
Many people choose to use both medical systems in conjunction with one another, seeing a holistic doctor for an overall health plan and turning to allopathic doctors for assistance with more serious illnesses or diseases where the body does not seem to be able to fight the problem effectively on its own. Instead of seeing the two medical fields of thought as oppositional, people with this viewpoint can take advantage of the benefits of both schools of thought, recognizing the fact that only you know what truly works for your body.
There are a number of alternative treatments available for people who are looking for cures to their health problems other than or instead of traditional treatments. Naturopathic medicine covers a wide range of alternative treatments and traditional treatments.
The word "holism" is rooted in the Greek "holos" meaning whole. It supports the idea that the universe cannot be broken down to the sum of its parts. Holistic medicine is therefore an approach to health, healing and wellness that aims to treat the patient as a complete entity without reducing him or her to mere symptoms, physical or otherwise.