When it comes to alternative approaches to medicine, there are a number of complementary health therapies you can consider to treat a range of health concerns.
But what is an alternative or complementary health therapy, exactly?
Alternative medicine is described as any practice that aims to achieve the healing effects of medicine, but which may lack biological credibility or is untested.
However, many people have chosen alternative medicine treatments as a way to explore more natural approaches to healing, or as a way to complement traditional medicine therapies.
So, whether you’re curious to try a new treatment, are interested in exploring natural options, or are looking to complement an existing treatment regime, there are three alternative therapies you may want to try: kinesiology, reiki, and Ayurveda.
Read on for more details on each of these therapies:
Kinesiology is understood as a system of natural healthcare that combines muscle monitoring with the principles of Chinese medicine to assess energy and body function, applying a range of gentle yet powerful healing techniques to improve health, wellbeing and vitality.
Kinesiology is best included as a complimentary health treatment or natural medicine alternative along with other beneficial health practices.
According to holistic kinesiologist Amanda Howle, kinesiology uses “muscle monitoring (bio-feedback) to identify stresses or patterns in your body that may be causing dis-ease”.
Kinesiologists also incorporate a range of therapeutic techniques into their practice including acupressure, lymphatic and other reflex points, trigger points, and body points.
In an average kinesiology session, a client can expect to begin with a general discussion about the concerns they wish to address so the practitioner knows where to focus the treatment.
Patients will often lay down and the practitioner will work on balancing stresses that present in the body through a combination of muscle monitoring and non-invasive energetic healing, to identify the underlying cause of any imbalance.
Curious to know more? Read our detailed article about kinesiology here.
Reiki is often described as an “energy healing” practice that emerged in Japan in the late 1800s.
Practitioners say the no-touch or soft-touch therapy works on the chakras, or the energy fields, around the body.
While the practice itself can be hard to explain, reiki practitioners often describe it as a relaxing, often spiritual experience where the practitioner connects with the patient’s energy field.
Reiki is used to release “energy blocks” in the body that make you susceptible to stress, low energy, poor mental health, and fatigue, as examples.
Patients who experience a reiki treatment will often be required to lie on a reiki table or sit in a chair while the practitioner places their hands on or just above the body in a sequence of motions. There is no physical manipulation as in massage.
A reiki session usually lasts between 60 and 90 minutes, and practitioners say clients report feeling a tingling sensation, warmth or cold, a slight twitching, or sometimes nothing.
Curious to know more? Read our detailed article about reiki here.
Ayurveda, or Ayurvedic medicine, is a traditional form of medicine that originated in India and dates back thousands of years.
Perhaps you’ve heard of popular Ayurvedic treatments such as tongue scraping and oil pulling, as these holistic treatments have grown in popularity among celebrities and wellness enthusiasts.
Ayurveda is based on the principle that every person is made up of natural elements, which together make up a person’s main life forces or ‘body humours’ classified as the three ‘doshas’: Vata dosha (space and air); Pitta dosha (fire and water); and Kapha dosha (water and earth).
After determining the concerns of a client, Ayurveda practitioners will often conduct a physical examination, take vital signs, and administer a specific pulse examination to provide a complete picture of the individual’s doshas.
“A great amount of time is also spent understanding the digestive power of the patient as Ayurveda considers gut health to be of prime importance, with many diseases strongly related to improper digestion,” said Dr Roopa Konanur, qualified Ayurvedic consultant and Panchakarma specialist at Ayurdhama.
Prescribing herbal and plant-based medicines are often a key component in Ayurvedic treatments, as well as a combination of massage, yoga, dietary advice, and cleansing or detoxing.
Curious to know more? Read our detailed article about Ayurveda here.