As the public explores greater health and wellness, interest in holistic healing is on the rise – providing a unique approach to treating physical and psychological ailments. Holistic healing pursues an overall balance of mind, body, and spirit, and encourages natural means of restoring equilibrium. To understand what holistic healing is, this article will explore its origins, outlook, and services.
It will be helpful to understand that “holistic” comprises of two Greek words meaning “all” and “whole”. This speaks to a philosophy of what we call a systemic approach. All of the individual parts of an ecosystem are working together in perfect harmony, and the disruption of any one part disrupts the entire system. Therefore, holistic healing looks at the entirety of an individual — not just their physical ailments,but also their emotions, lifestyle, and spiritual practices.
The practice of holistic healing has been around since ancient times. For example, Traditional Chinese Medicine follows a holistic view of health and wellness, tracing back thousands of years. In recent times, holistic healing practitioners have turned to a combination of treatments such as nutrition, massage, aromatherapy, and herbalism.
At its essence, holistic healing seeks to find and address the underlying causes of dis-ease. Where Western medicine typically relies on medicinal intervention for short-term relief, holistic healing seeks to support the body’s natural healing processes with natural therapies. This difference is perhaps best illustrated by the role of nutrition: While Western medicine seeks to nourish the body from the outside with vitamins or other supplementation, holistic healing works to nourish the body from the inside – meaning, helping provide the body with the nutrients it needs to help heal itself.
Some of the most popular holistic healing modalities include Ayurveda, Chinese Medicine, Naturopathy, Homeopathy, and Energy Therapies. With Ayurveda, the main practices are self-care, a whole-foods based diet, herbal and mineral supplements, and lifestyle guidance. Chinese Medicine combines herbal and nutritional therapies, massage, and body work to balance the flow of energy, or Qi, around the body. Naturopathy does include the use of medicinal herbs and supplements to restore balance to the body. Homeopathic medicine uses the body’s own healing abilities in order to restore balance in body and mind. A variety of energy therapies are also available, such as Reiki, which uses channels of energy to restore balance and relaxation.
Though the approaches vary from modality to modality, most practitioners will take an intensely personal approach. They may focus on topics such as diet and lifestyle, peer pressure and self-perception, family dynamics, social activities, and other personal aspects of health. The entire approach is centered around balance, and is deeply focused on individual needs and concerns.
When considering whether to pursue holistic healing as an avenue of health and wellness, it is important to discuss the options with a qualified and experienced practitioner. Visit them for an in-person or virtual consultation to assess your individual needs and determine if holistic healing is the right path for you. With the right support and guidance, holistic healing practices can potentially bring a sense of health and wellbeing for both the body and mind.