Holistic medicine is a form of healing that considers the whole person — body, mind, spirit, and emotions — in the quest for optimal health and wellness. According to the holistic medicine philosophy, one can achieve optimal health — the primary goal of holistic medicine practice — by gaining proper balance in life.
This practice states that the whole person is made up of interdependent parts and if one part is not working properly, all the other parts will be affected. In this way, if people have imbalances (physical, emotional, or spiritual) in their lives, it can negatively affect their overall health.
Principles of Holistic Medicine
Holistic medicine is also based on the belief that unconditional love and support is the most powerful healer and a person is ultimately responsible for his or her own health and well-being. Other principles of holistic medicine include the following:
All people have innate healing powers.
A patient is a person, not a disease.
Healing takes a team approach involving the patient and doctor and addresses all aspects of a person’s life using a variety of health care practices.
Treatment involves fixing the cause of the condition, not just alleviating the symptoms.
Holistic Medicine: Types of Treatments
Holistic practitioners use a variety of treatment techniques to help their patients take responsibility for their own well-being and achieve optimal health. Depending on the practitioner’s training, these may include:
Patient education on lifestyle changes and self-care to promote wellness. This may include diet, exercise, psychotherapy, relationship, and spiritual counseling. It may be useful to find chemical imbalances with genetic testing and tailor treatment to each individual.