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Fitness And Nutrition - How Can Alternative Medicine Help?

Written and reviewed by
Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine and Surgery (BAMS), MD - Alternate Medicine
Alternative Medicine Specialist, Pune  •  15 years experience
Fitness And Nutrition - How Can Alternative Medicine Help?

Allopathic medicines are usually chemical formulations that are used to treat diseases. However, alternative medicine, sometimes referred to as complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is gaining acceptable slowly to cure many diseases, for which allopathy does not offer a definitive remedy.

Read on to know some of the most common forms of CAM and how they can contribute to fitness and nutrition:

  1. Ayurveda: Ayurveda, which translates to the science of life, believes that health is when there is a balance between the 3 components in the body – Vata, pitta, and Kapha. The imbalance between these three leads to specific diseases. So, all Ayurvedic remedies are aimed at restoring the balance between these three elements. Be it the asanas, the food prescriptions, or the lifestyle changes, Ayurveda is aimed at restoring this balance for holistic health and fitness.
  2. Acupuncture: This system believes that the energy needs to flow in specific patterns, and altered patterns of flow lead to disease. Therefore, the treatment is aimed at restoring this path of energy flow, which is done through the use of metallic needles.
  3. Homeopathy: Homeopathy believes in the philosophy of “like cures like”. The same chemicals that induce the disease are used in very small dilutions to treat the disease. It also believes that the clinical presentation of a disease is just one aspect, and there are many other symptoms which are hidden and need to be identified before arriving at a prescription. This again suggests changes in diet and lifestyle achieve complete cure.
  4. Naturopathy: This again uses a combination of natural remedies including Ayurveda, yoga, and counselling. The person also is put through a different lifestyle, allowing for more self-evaluation, following a simpler lifestyle, which makes them value health and fitness more.
  5. Meditation: The body has its own healing power, and focusing all the strength leads to mental and physical well-being. From anxiety and depression to breathing issues, meditation can help cure a variety of diseases. Also, because it focuses and improves breathing, body function is improved from a molecular level.
  6. Herbalism: A number of herbs and spices are widely used in many ancient medicine systems, including Ayurveda. The belief is that these herbs have inherent medicinal values and are therefore widely used in curing various diseases. The fact that they have been used for centuries makes them more acceptable. Further, there is almost no side-effect from any of these.
  7. Biofeedback: This is another technique that is gaining popularity. While functions like heart rate, body temperature, and blood pressure are generally considered involuntary, biofeedback believes that they can be controlled. Dietary changes are also introduced, which are nutritious. The fitness of a person is drastically improved by natural techniques.

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