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Herbal Medicine or Herbalism

Herbal Medicine or Herbalism

Herbal medicine draws therapeutic benefits from active constituents in plant. Hippocrates is considered the father of western medicine as well as the father of herbalism. However, many cultures have been using herbs and their beneficial properties for centuries. Herbal medicine was the foundation for modern drugs and pharmaceuticals. There are varied uses and preparations of herbal medicine, some with great benefits and others with the potential of toxicity. An estimated 80% of the global population uses some form of herbal medicine.

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Description of Aromatherapy

Description of Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is use of essential oils for therapeutic purposes. Essential oils are extracted from plants and have varied benefits including as antibacterials, anti-carcinogenics, antifungals, anti-inflammatories, antimicrobials, antivirals, bronchodilators, decongestants, and many others. Clinical evidence supports their use to treat many conditions.

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Homeopathy Defined

Homeopathy Defined

Homeopathy was developed in the 18th century and its popularity spread from Europe to other parts of the world. Homeopathy believes that like cures like, remedies are prepared in highly diluted amounts, and treatments are tailored to the individual. Homeopathy is generally nontoxic and has few side effects. Scientific evidence indicates homeopathic remedies are effective in treating a variety of conditions.

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Traditional Chinese Medicine

Traditional Chinese Medicine

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is a method of healing that originated in China over 2,000 years ago and was used in China, Japan, Korea, Tibet, and Vietnam before it spread worldwide. It incorporates several modalities including acupuncture, acupressure, Chinese herbal medicine, Chinese manipulation, tai chi, cupping, moxibustion, tuina, gua sha, qigong, and others. The efficacy of TCM is evident from its long-standing history, its widespread use, and from clinical studies.

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Describing Ayurveda

Describing Ayurveda

Ayurveda is a medical system that originated in India thousands of years ago. In Sanskrit, ayu means life and veda means science or knowledge. Ayurveda is holistic, and tailors its diagnostic and treatment approach to the patient’s unique circumstances. It is used in India, and in other countries including Germany, Hungary, Italy, Switzerland, and the United States.

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Modern Origins of CAM in the West

Modern Origins of CAM in the West

Some CAM modalities originated several thousand years ago, while others have a more recent history. Regardless of their origin, all CAM modalities in use in the West have experienced shifts throughout the years. Modalities that were once considered mainstream treatment were replaced with scientific medicine. However, CAM modalities experienced resurgence in the 1960s that has remained until today.

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Common Myths of CAM

Common Myths of CAM

Myths surrounding CAM are variable. Four current myths include lack of educational requirements for CAM practitioners, lack of qualifications required to practice CAM modalities, lack of scientific evidence in support of CAM, and lack of support for CAM therapies from conventional or allopathic doctors. Each of these myths is explained and debunked.

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Defining CAM

Defining CAM

CAM is an acronym for complementary alternative medicine. CAM and the terms complementary medicine, alternative medicine, traditional medicine, integrative medicine, and holistic medicine are used interchangeably, although erroneously, as each concept stands in its own right. CAM encompasses a wide array of practices, disciplines, and healing methods, often un-related and with not much in common. The boundaries of what is considered CAM are unclear, and this article provides some clarification.

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