What Is Integrative Medicine :To integrate means to “unite” or “blend” and in the context of medicine, it means to use all modalities available to return a patient to health. Every type of medicine has its place in aiding a body that’s not at ease or dis-eased. Nutrition, homeopathy, acupuncture, chiropractic, herbalism, meditation, yoga, Tai Chi and other lifestyle changes, are all integrative modalities which serve the body as a whole. Natural healing wisdom seeks to utilize a healing tool for the patient in order to discharge inflammation and return them to optimal health.
What Is Inflammation
Inflammation is the body’s way of bringing an imbalance to our attention. Where there is pain, heat, redness and/or swelling – there is a disturbance in optimal health. Typical Western medicine suppresses the inflammation with a pill and we go about our business until the inflammation exacerbates and becomes chronic. Back to the doctor we go to get more pills, stronger pills or a different kind of pill to further suppress inflammation that has gotten severe. It’s usually not until the chronic inflammation has reached a level of degeneration, that we seek a second opinion.
Integrative Medicine Considers All Solutions
But there is another way. Integrative medicine practitioners and coaches consider all medicine available and bend toward nature to provide the best solution. There is a time and a place for prescription medication, but the physical aspects of healing cannot be separated from the mental, spiritual and emotional aspects. Integrative medicine unites Western medicine with traditional Chinese medicine, Aryuvedic medicine, and other modalities which embrace the entire individual.
What Part Does Nutrition Play
Nutrition is a unique starting point in Integrative medicine. “You are what you eat” is not merely a slogan, but can be traced back to Hippocrates, who said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Food matters. What we eat can have profound effects on our health. What we eat sends signals to our body resulting in the production or the prevention of disease. One only has to open a newspaper, a book, a medical journal, or go online to see the multitude of information available relating food and diets to disease and disease prevention. Knowledge, however, does not equate to behavioral change.
To reframe inflammation as an intervention by the body to seek healing in a way that treats and releases, instead of conceals and silences, is to take an integrative approach to medicine. To begin with nutrition, is to begin at the source of possibility.