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Major types of alternative medicine

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Patients and people suffering from pain and those who have tried conventional drugs-based medicine often turn to one or multiple types of alternative medicine therapies to seek relief, and improve quality of life.

It’s not just those who are sick who use alternative medicine. People with perfect physical health often adopt practices such as yoga, homeopathy or acupuncture.
Studies by Harvard University indicate that 4 out 10 people in the US try alternative medicine in some form or the other to deal with disease and illness. Here are some of the major alternative medicine methods that you can use to be in good health or recover from illness.


Millions of people in India rely on homeopathic medicine. After it was developed in Germany more than 200 years ago, homeopathy’s basic theory is that ‘the substances that make you ill can also help you stay well’, as per the World Health Organization. 

Using herbal and plant-based ingredients, homoepathic doctors give small doses to first test and then confirm the dose and combination of chemicals that best suit a patient’s body and disease symptoms.
Allergies, diarrhea, vertigo, and asthma are some of the illnesses that are successfully treated. Also note that the comparative cost of these techniques, especially over long period of time, can be much less than conventional drug and consultations based therapy. 


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In this therapy, a professional hypnotist will work on your mind and state of consciousness. He will make simple but powerful suggestions to help the patient improve his health. If you are a smoker, want to lose weight and can’t sleep at night, then hypnosis is a good alternative medicine technique. It can give you relief from stress, pain, headaches, and even childbirth. Studies show that giving positive or useful suggestions generates biological and chemical changes in the human body, and this improves the nervous system, from where many diseases begin.



Yoga in all its forms is a very popular alternative medicine technique used to keep the body fit, improve blood circulation, and reduce stress. Today, more than ever before, studies suggest that regular yoga in the form of stretching and breathing exercises and meditation can help in the prevention of diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high blood sugar, digestive problems, and early degeneration of joints.


Guided Imagery

This is a risk-free technique that uses the suggestion of helpful visuals to treat people suffering from cancer, a heart attack, anxiety, and stress. In medical studies, brain scans of patients who use this technique indicate that visualizing an activity encourages a patient to carry out this activity. A patient is guided with the help of positive images and this promotes the willingness to do tasks in recovery, exercise, and re-learning new skills.



In India Ayurveda has been regularly used for thousands of years. In this alternative medicinal technique, Ayurvedic practitioners use herbs, massage, breathing, diet, and meditation to treat the whole self and restore balance in the body. The focus is on maintaining a healthy life energy. This is because if the prana is not balanced it can lead to illness, and this this illness can only be treated by balancing the spirit, mind and body.



Many of us have found great relief from pain if someone gently rubs our head, neck, shoulder blades, legs and arms. There is immediate release of pain and negative energy, and this makes us happy, which is why massage as an alternative medicine therapy is very popular in India and across the world. It is cheap, doesn’t consume time and triggers immediate short-term results. 

A professional massage therapist puts pressure on certain muscles to ease pain and tension, and this can reduce cancer treatment symptoms and help the severe pain of fibromyalgia or muscle pain. Professional athletes use massage therapy to lower muscle soreness, and also improve performance.


The alternative medicine technique of meditation is one of the fastest growing therapies across the world. Many studies have now confirmed that slow, even breathing clams down the mind, helps us focus, and helps in the prevention and control of many diseases. Studies also show an improvement in asthma, high blood pressure symptoms and pain among those who meditate regularly.



Like Ayurveda in India, acupuncture dates back thousands of years in China and other Asian nations. Today, it’s one of the most popular alternative medicine techniques to cure or prevent certain medical conditions. The World Health Organization has given its approval for acupuncture to treat more than 28 medical conditions respiratory and digestive disorders, and pain.

Written by: healthplus24.com, team
Date last updated: May 28, 2014

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