Curious about the reach of wellness therapies in mainstream medicine?
According to the most recent study by the National Cancer Institute, approximately 4 out of 10 adults use a Complementary and Alternative Medicine strategy, from a national survey using a definition that includes natural products, deep breathing and meditation, yoga, tai chi, qi gong, chiropractic therapy, diet and nutrition, and several others. The institute notes that many therapies that had previously been thought of as purely alternative approaches are now being used as mainstream therapies to supplement cancer treatments to help patients feel better and recover faster.
Integrative medical care programs that practice conventional therapies in tandem with complementary approaches are becoming increasing popular in mainstream medicine today. JAMA Oncology, a peer-reviewed journal, takes a strong stance by concluding that “a broad range of CAM interventions are often favored and are an appropriate option along with or even potentially instead of standard anticancer therapy, as long as patients are well informed… and have realistic expectations.”
According to their findings, cancer treatments ranging from surgery and radiation to chemotherapy and immunotherapy can all be complemented by alternative medicine approaches. The journal sites benefits of integrative programs to include quality of life and more promising results than standard treatments alone. While conventional medicine largely focuses on proven clinical outcomes and treating the disease, a holistic approach to treating the whole person and supporting the patient during what can be a very difficult chapter in their lives.