Do Natural Remedies Really Work?

It is not a secret that many in the medical profession scoff at the idea of using any natural remedy for health issues. The best doctor is the one who is willing to have an open mind and be willing to monitor what a patient is using and how they are  progressing. Healers from long ago, had to have success with their natural methods, especially when dealing with royalty. There were no lawsuits but failure often meant death for the healer. There is no clear cut explanation as to why many of today’s medical profession is so unwilling to explore the benefits of the natural method.

Studies are conducted every day on the use of, and results of natural medicine, including herbs and spices. For examples of studies that concluded with very positive results, let’s look at peppermint, echinacea, and chamomile.

  1. Peppermint has been under the eye of the scientific community and one study showed that peppermint is a good choice for IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome). In one such study, participants took peppermint oil capsules and reported back after one month. The symptoms of IBS had dropped by up to 40%.
  2. Echinacea is one herb that is still being thoroughly tested by the scientific community. It will take more research to say without a doubt, that echinacea is extremely effective in helping with colds and respiratory illness. However, the scientific community agrees that echinacea should still be considered by people looking for natural solutions due to the positive feedback it gets from people who participated in studies.
  3. Chamomile is an ancient medicinal remedy. It is widely agreed upon by scientists, that the flavonoids contained within the chamomile hold the responsibility for the medical properties described. Scientists are still working on what the other chemicals within the chamomile flower may be, and how effective they are towards resolving health issues. With the studies done, it has been shown that not all chamomile teas on the market are the same. Some are far more potent than others and the studies concluded that one should start with small doses of chamomile tea and take note of any side effects before moving the dosage up. Chamomile tea is used for many health issues and an example from the scientific community shows that it may prevent certain cancer cells from being able to develop.

There are case studies and examples of people who were diagnosed with certain ailments and prescribed a number of medications, which seemed like an overload to the patient. Many people today realize that taking 2-6 meds or more, may help in the short term but the long term effects on their body could be devastating.

Case studies are done frequently by scientific labs on the effectiveness of essential oils. It is starting to be shown that essential oils, do indeed have the ability to battle and overtake microbes in the body. An example is oregano oil and how it will work against harmful pathogens. It is not yet fully understood how essential oils work against pathogens but the thought currently written, is that somehow, they manage to cause damage to the pathogen.

There have been case studies done where it has been shown the essential oils work on mood and depression issues. Naturopaths have used lavender, rosemary, and jasmine as a way to help their clients improve their overall mood. Using combinations of essential oils to help with stress, also lowered the number of depression episodes. Although more scientific studies are to be done, it can be said that essential oils and other natural health solutions are showing as a great alternative choice for health.

How Safe and Effective is Alternative Medicine?

Understanding alternative medicine is key to judging how safe and effective it may be for you. Unlike traditional medicine, the idea behind alternative is maintaining a whole-body balance. For example, when you visit an acupuncture clinic for the first time, they will do an exam to determine your energy and blood flow throughout the whole body. The first starting point is looking at your tongue as an indicator of overall health. They are looking for any unbalance in the system. It is like having a diagnostic machine wired up to your car to determine why that orange “check engine light,” is on.

Alternative medicine is considered to be “whole body,” rather than just having the general practitioner listen to your heart to determine your health. With that in mind, if you are considering trying alternative health methods for the ailments that plague you, then a visit to a naturopathic clinic may be just the ticket. Keep in mind that naturopathic clinics, chiropractors, and acupuncture clinics are looked down upon by many, but not all traditional doctors. It is imperative that you do your research before visiting any such clinics and find out where they studied and exactly what they studied. After doing your research, consider taking your questions or concerns to your GP. In most cases, the alternative medicine solution will be deemed safe, but depending on how open-minded the GP is, it will determine how effective they feel it may be. It is possible that you may find yourself consulting with another GP or specialist who is open to discussion and fully understands the role of alternative medicine.

With a naturopathic clinic, the person you see there takes a much more philosophical outlook towards patients. This type of alternative clinic will look at the whole body. They are interested in how your physical, emotional, and overall mental health is playing a role in what you are experiencing. Once they determine the issue, they may give you a new full-scale diet to follow, with a recommendation for particular herbs or supplements to add to your diet.

As mentioned, this is where your research comes in, because a really good naturopathic clinic will tell you upfront, whether or not anything they prescribe will have side effects due to any prescription medicine you are on. In regards to the diet, it is likely to be safe and includes making sure that certain levels of minerals and natural vitamins are included in your diet. Frequently the naturopath will discover that there is a lack of zinc, potassium, or magnesium in the body and recommend a number of natural foods to boost that. The same can be said for issues like low testosterone in men. Many health or supplement stores, stock capsules for increasing testosterone, which the naturopath may find unnecessary or not useful for the issue at hand.

When you look to acupuncture as an alternative method for health, again you need to research the clinic and the staff. At an acupuncture clinic, you may be prescribed Chinese herbs to take for a certain length of time, while receiving needle or cupping treatments. If you live outside of China for example, while researching clinics, you may find that the staff is MD’s trained in China and that they have worked extensively in acupuncture clinics there, before setting up practice in your area.

The use of fine needles to insert into various points in the body is safe. The acupuncture clinic will do a checkup before deciding on a course of action. The areas they tend to focus on, are the tongue and the heart. Most issues can be solved in a relatively short time and can be considered a safe method of alternative medicine.



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