Tags: alternative | medicine | choices

How to Know When to Choose Alternative Treatment

By    |   Friday, 10 July 2015 09:10 AM

Tens of thousands of Americans die needlessly every year from a very deadly myth — that only drugs and surgery can heal.

The financial power of pharmaceutical companies has skewed our healthcare into a system that ties the hands of natural practitioners and patients who want to find root causes of illness and restore their health.

John Reed, M.D., director of Inpatient Services at the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Maryland, says that many doctors tend to prescribe drugs first and ask questions later.

“The current medical system is in danger of collapsing because it is treating problems, not people,” he says. “Our healthcare system doesn’t encourage lifestyles that prevent many of our dreaded diseases, including the diabetes epidemic we are facing right now.”

Certain health conditions for which conventional doctors can offer little help are best treated by alternative or integrative practitioners.

These include fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, and chronic pain.

When it comes to heart disease, traditional or Western medicine shines in acute situations such as heart attack or stroke.

But alternative medicine, including a change in lifestyle habits, can prevent and reverse cardiovascular disease.

New research from the U.K. shows that treating heart disease with statin drugs – a $30 billion industry here in the U.S. – gives only “an illusion of protection” from heart attacks and stroke.

Researchers concluded that more lives would be saved if patients made lifestyle changes, such as eating a healthy diet, exercising, and quitting smoking.

Alan Christianson, N.M.D., a Phoenix-based naturopathic physician, tells Newsmax Health that irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is rarely helped by modern medicine.

“Natural medicine, on the other hand, can identify and treat the causative factors such as food intolerances, intestinal permeability, and intestinal parasites which may be causing IBS.

“Conventional medicine has no real treatments except for suggesting a high-fiber diet, which often exacerbates the condition.”

Reed says that the best medicine is what he calls an “integrative approach.”

“For example, last night at our trauma center I was on duty when an accident victim arrived in very bad pain from his crushed limbs. We gave him a very high dose of opioid medication which lessened his pain from 10 — on a scale of one to 10 — to eight.

“I then used acupuncture to shift his nervous system away from the pain centers. His pain subsided to five out of 10.

“When the medical situation is acute, it is beneficial to give drugs or perform surgery, but in the meantime, we must offer supportive care and suggest lifestyle changes to restore good health.”

The full version of this article appeared in Health Radar newsletter. To read more, click here.

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Certain health conditions for which conventional doctors can offer little help are best treated by alternative or integrative practitioners. Here's how to know when going the alternative route is the best option.
alternative, medicine, choices
Friday, 10 July 2015 09:10 AM
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