Traditional Medicine vs Alternative Medicine: East
In America, we primarily rely on medical doctors for our “health”. Our definition of
health is to be without disease. However, health has a much deeper meaning. The world
health organization defines health as: “Health is a state of complete physical, mental
and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” As anyone
with thyroid symptoms can tell you their blood work may be “normal” but they still feel
Whole medical systems are built upon complete systems of theory and practice. Often,
these systems have evolved apart from and earlier than the conventional medical
approach used in the United States. Examples include acupuncture, traditional Chinese
medicine, and homeopathy.
In Eastern medical philosophy, the concept of health can be simplified into the principle
of keeping the five main organs - the spleen, heart, kidneys, lungs and liver - in balance.
These five organs work together with other systems in the body to fulfill their
physiological functions, but also perform other specially designated functions. Each of
the five organs interacts with the others.
Emphasis on these areas of health is an aspect of preventative medicine that is
underutilized in the Western medical system. Health becomes more than the absence of
disease or illness; it is the body's ability to preserve a balanced relationship with itself
and the outside world.
This is a different kind of medicine than most of us are used to, since Western medicine
relies on treating illness, removing the organisms that make us sick with medications,
and surgically removing what is not normal. This philosophy gets to the CAUSE of
disease not just treating the symptoms.
In the west, we focus on symptom suppression. A collection of symptoms are given a
name or “diagnosis” and then are treated with various medications. Our system does not
look at the body as a whole but rather as parts-as you probably know if you have been
referred to a specialist for a particular problem..i.e. gastroenterologist or neurologist.
Treatment of a disease process is addressed after it shows in your blood work or on
some type of medical test. It is not to say that medical tests are not warranted –they are-
but we need to look at prevention as it has a much higher success rate for health.
Luckily, alternative and integrated medicine is becoming more popular in America.
You can boost your defense system by incorporating forms of preventative medicine
into your life. Classic medical textbooks discuss treating patients for health conditions a
season or two before they begin. The body becomes stronger before it is attacked by
illness. This is especially useful for people who are prone to seasonal health conditions.
Let’s place our emphasis on looking whole body processes and catching abnormalities
before they reach the disease stage as in the Eastern Cultures.
At Balanced Body Wellness Centre we concentrate on preventing disease and promoting
health. We look for the cause of your symptoms utilizing various labs and diagnostic
techniques. For more information contact our office.
Health & Wellness Blog
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