In recent times, there has been a sea change in the way health care is being perceived. Rather than seeing it as a way to fix what is broken, the accent is not shifting to prevention using a balance of lifestyle changes and Integrative Medicine which seeks to combine all that is good about alternative therapies and conventional medicine.
Integrative medicine (IM) seeks to use the best amalgam of western medicine and alternative therapies such as herbal medicine, mind-body approaches, stress management, traditional therapies, acupuncture, and nutrition.
An IM doctor will offer a holistic, long term solution to a medical problem rather than temporary symptomatic relief: for instance he may prescribe half an hour of brisk walking daily along with a conventional prescription. Or he may advise that a cancer may be greatly helped if chemo is assisted by yoga, acupuncture and meditation.
An IM practitioner is ideally trained in not just the conventional facets of western medicine, but also has training in other subjects that are of vital importance for long term maintenance of good health and fitness. These would include nutrition, botanicals and eastern therapies.
Of course it is important to beware of the quacks in IM as in any field of medicine; but with the accent on prevention, Integrative medicine may be worth consideration?