Alternative Medicine Treatments

An introduction to some complementary and alternative approaches that can help heal the body, mind and soul.

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Healing Herbs

Plants have been a part of the human medical armamentarium since the dawn of time. Our ancestors who foraged for healing herbs passed the knowledge down through the ages and years of trial and error produced some powerful remedies. Plants contain bioactive compounds that have many therapeutic uses. In fact, many active ingredients in Western medicine pharmaceuticals were first discovered in plants, following the lead of traditional medicine men and shamans of indigenous and Asian cultures.

One complaint that has found refuge in herbal medicine is the hot flashes and night sweats (vasomotor symptoms) of menopause. Hot flashes are experienced when estrogen naturally wanes during menopause or when estrogen is intentionally disabled as a part of treatment. Popular herbal remedies to temper hot flashes are black cohosh and sage tea, both thought to work on receptors that affect vasomotor symptoms.

Body Works

Body manipulation is a CAM approach that teams the body and mind to promote health. Yoga is a part of ancient meditative practices of Hinduism and Buddhism. But the benefits of yoga extend far beyond spiritual wellbeing. Yoga movements combined with conscious breathing techniques not only bring fitness, flexibility and relaxation to those who practice it regularly, but it can also counteract depression, insomnia, anxiety, stress and high blood pressure. Breathing with intention and humming through the process is thought to increase nitric oxide, a potent gas that keeps blood vessels wide open, a great help to people with hypertension.

If you are new to yoga take a beginner's lesson from Dr. Oz.