A New Look at an Old Way of Life
Alternative health options can include anything from natural herbs used to treat sunburns to using acupuncture for controlling excruciating pain. It’s been around in one form or another for thousands of years and its beginnings are generally attributed to the Chinese.
Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) asserts that the human body and the environment are closely related and when the body’s rhythms are upset, treatment and ultimate prevention can come from the environment.
Herbs and other plants are widely used in Chinese medicine to bring balance back to the body. Meditation, acupuncture and massage are used in conjunction with the mind and to bring harmony to the body.
According to the Chinese, the forces in the universe are believed to affect everything in life, including our health. These forces are represented by the symbol of yin and yang, the two most powerful cosmic forces in the universe.
Yin is the female force and is represented by the moon, while yang represents the masculine force and is represented by the sun. From these ancient beliefs, the Chinese developed a technology for health care that in many ways rivals that of Western medicine.
These alternatives methods were initially thought to be “quackery,” but as scientific evidence surfaced to prove otherwise, the early ways of thinking had to be reconsidered.
That scientific evidence has been difficult to come by. The huge drug companies aren’t going to put costly research efforts into techniques that won’t bring in piles of money.
It wasn’t until the mid-1990s that funding for alternative medicine began to appear in academic circles. Since then, it’s become a form of therapy and healing that’s widely accepted around the world.