Holistic remedies attempt to bring health, balance and harmony to the mind, body and spirit of you, your family and even your pets.
Their focus is on addressing the underlying cause of disease, conditions or illness when possible or alleviating the symptoms without the use of drugs and surgery. However, they may combine these traditional forms of medicine if absolutely necessary.
There are many, many different forms of holistic remedies to choose from and each one has it's own unique benefits and value. They may consist of things like herbal remedies, nutritional supplements, colon cleansing, massage, acupuncture, homeopathic remedies, Chinese herbs, oxygen therapies or may involve removing something from your life such as making changes in your diet or cleaning up your environment.
Holistic remedies may also be referred to as home remedies, natural remedies or alternative remedies. Each of these are very similar, but have subtle differences that make them not always one in the same.
Natural remedies are basically any remedy that is derived from a natural source, rather than a synthetic drug. An example of a natural remedy would be taking vitamin c for a cold.
Alternative remedies are usually just anything that isn't considered to be a main stream medical practice. Therefore natural, holistic and home remedies all fall under the category of alternative. An example of an alternative remedy would be acupuncture for headaches.
Home remedies, however, are usually tried and true practices, beliefs, or traditions passed down through families for generations that use foods or common household items to treat or cure conditions. The most well known home remedy is drinking chicken soup when you have the flu.
Which Holistic Remedies do I Choose?
With so many choices to pick from this can be a difficult and confusing decision. It depends on a variety of different factors, such as cost, availability, the characteristics of your particular health condition, effectiveness, and any limits or restrictions that may be part of your life.
You may find that acupuncture is fantastic for your specific health problem, but there aren't any competent acupuncturists within your area, so a different approach may have to be pursued. Or due to budget restraints you may have to choose the options that are most cost effective.
Before investing in any particular remedy it's always best to do some thorough research and explore all the possible options available to you and their level of effectiveness for your specific condition.
Becoming educated about your health condition as much as possible is also essential knowledge for this process. Then make your decision based on these findings.
Listen to Your Body
The next most important aspect in determining which holistic remedy to choose requires that you learn to listen to your body very carefully.
Each persons body is different and will respond to remedies in a different way. Not all remedies will work the same for each person.
One person may have a complete recovery with herbal remedies while another person sees no results at all. Another person may find great relief with a massage, while another needs deep muscle massage, acupuncture, changes in their diet and nutritional supplements in order to make progress.
It's all very individual and often requires a little trial and error to find what works best for you. Over time changes may need to be made as healing takes place and your body needs something different.
It's imperative that you know how to read your bodies cues and listen to the messages it has for you. When you learn how to listen to your body, you'll know exactly what's working and what isn't. You'll know what you need.
This requires that you become very aware and conscious and do a little detective work. You'll need to pay attention to minute details of how your body feels prior to a particular remedy and then how it responds during and after. It also involves listening to your intuition and following your gut.
Many different manufacturers and health practitioners may try to sell you on their holistic remedy as the best thing in the world for each and every person. That simply may not be true. If it doesn't work, then they may blame you or call it a healing crises.
A healing crises is a common term used in holistic remedies as a period of time immediately after you start to use a particular remedy or method in which your symptoms and condition may actually get worse before it gets better. Most holistic practitioners will tell you that this is a natural and necessary part of the treatment process.
I personally have a conservative view in regard to healing crises. A certain amount of healing crises may be acceptable, but it should not be too severe. If you are experiencing a severe healing crises which makes you unable to function, then you are detoxing or healing too quickly. The remedy or method of treatment you are using should be decreased until symptoms abate to some degree. If you detoxify or heal too quickly, it can put too much pressure on the organs and systes. The organs such as the liver and kidneys may not be healthy enough to handle and eliminate the toxins. This can be dangerous for someone with a serious health condition.
So it's important to use caution and gauge your progress carefully. Tune into the wisdom of your body, listen to what it tells you and respond accordingly. If cutting back on your remedy does not lessen symptoms, then you may have to find another remedy to use that is less powerful for your body. Of course, if you don't see any results with a particular holistic remedy, then this choice is not effective for your body or condition and you'll need to try something else.
Holistic remedies are a valuable and effective health care alternative that opens the doors to a broader choice of options than traditional medicine alone, without the risks associated with prescription drugs. However, each one carries their own risks and limits that need to be taken into consideration and weighed carefully. Just because they are natural and alternative does not mean decisions should be made lightly.