These terms are used frequently in the holistic, natural and alternative medicine community. Special thanks to our reference-checked Members for researching and providing these definitions.
Acupuncture is among the oldest healing practices in the world. As part of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), acupuncture aims to restore and maintain health through the stimulation of specific points on the body.  The acupuncture technique that has been most often studied scientifically involves penetrating the skin with thin, solid, metallic needles (aka filaments) that are manipulated by the hands or by electrical stimulation.
 
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Applied Kinesiology is the application of kinesiology “based upon the fact that body language never lies.  The opportunity of understanding the body language (innate wisdom) is enhanced by the ability to use the muscles as indicators for body language.” ~ Dr. George Goodheart, D.C. founder of Applied Kinesiology.
 
  
Thanks to Heather Phillips of Muscle Tuners International Inc.
 
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Ayurvedic medicine (also called Ayurveda) is one of the world’s oldest medical systems. It originated in India and has evolved there over thousands of years, using a constitutional model. There are energetic forces that influence nature and human beings. Herbs, massage, and specialized diets are included in the treatment modalities.
 
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Aromatherapy can be defined as the art and science of utilizing naturally extracted aromatic essences from plants to balance, harmonize and promote the health of body, mind and spirit.  It seeks to explore the physiological, psychological and spiritual realm of the individual's response to aromatic extracts as well as to observe and enhance the individual's innate healing process. The inhaled aroma from these "essential" oils is widely believed to stimulate brain function. Essential oils can also be absorbed through the skin, where they travel through the bloodstream and can promote whole-body healing. As a holistic practice, Aromatherapy is both a preventative approach as well as an active method to employ during acute and chronic stages of illness or 'dis'-ease.
 
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Bioenergetic wellness is defined as a holistic and natural way to access the body’s innate and inner wisdom so it can reveal what it needs for optimal health and wellbeing. It is often seen as a self-care and self-responsibility model. It can include using muscles as monitors (muscle testing/ muscle monitoring) as a biofeedback system to gain information from the body and biofield. Bioenergetic Wellness is the replacement word for Kinesiology in some countries including Canada. Touch for Health, Therapeutic Touch, Energy Tuning™ and Muscle Tuning™ are a few of the disciplines associated with Bioenergetic Wellness.
 
  Thanks to Heather Phillips of Muscle Tuners International Inc.
 
 
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Bowen Therapy works primarily through the nervous system on both structural and energetic levels. The technique is gentle and noninvasive, and can be performed through clothing. A Bowen treatment consists of gentle rolling movements. These stimulations activate a systemic response so powerful that a few minutes’ pause is observed to allow them to be integrated. A pattern of movements and pauses continues throughout the treatment. The rhythm is soothing, and most clients fall asleep at least once during the session.
 
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Chiropractic care is a natural method of health care that focuses on correcting the causes of physical problems from subluxations or misalignments of the bones in the body, especially the spine. A Chiropractor (D.C.) provides health care that is holistic and improves people’s lives by optimizing the functioning of the nervous system, so the body is able to function better. 

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Colon cleansing is removing stool from the colon through the use of laxatives, enemas, enzymes, herbal teas, or dietary supplements. The theory behind colon cleansing is that it helps remove toxins from the body (detoxification) and helps the "good" bacteria in the colon to flourish.  This helps balance body chemistry, eliminate waste, and restore proper tissue and organ function.

Colon Hydrotherapy (also known as colonics) uses filtered water passed through the colon to accomplish detoxification and removal of excess toxins from the body. It has been known to help with weight loss, weight management and other types of physical cleanses.

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About.com: Colon Cleanse

A constellation is a process that allows your subconscious dynamics to reveal hidden secrets that cause problems in your life. Once something is conscious, you can be empowered to make better choices that serve you beyond any inherited negative patterns that do not.

Usually through a group process, you are supported by a skilled facilitator with attendees who represent aspects or ancestors as needed. They respond to the energy of your subconscious. The facilitator reads the energy of the core issue that needs to be expressed and works toward resolution of internal conflict(s). A new reality emerges once hidden secrets are revealed and energy is released.

Constellations accelerate change at the deepest of levels of awareness at lightning speed.

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Craniosacral therapy (CST) is a form of bodywork or alternative therapy using gentle touch to manipulate the synarthrodial joints of the cranium. A practitioner of cranial-sacral therapy may also apply light touches to a patient's spine and pelvis. Practitioners believe that this manipulation regulates the flow of cerebrospinal fluid and aids in "primary respiration".[2] Craniosacral therapy was developed by John Upledger, D.O. in the 1970s, as an offshoot of osteopathy in the cranial field, or cranial osteopathy, which was developed in the 1930s by William Garner Sutherland.
 
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Dowsing is an ancient practice that was used to find water. Today it still is, and it's also used to clear energy disturbances in homes and businesses. Energy disturbances are created by things like EMFs, cell phones and towers, negative vortexes, geopathic stress or even previous occupants. By dowsing your home or business and using copper curing rods, you are able to block out these negative vibrations which can result in better sleep, less anxiety, calmer pets, removing vibrations from past occupants, and helping homes sell and increased business. Positive energy is everything!

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Electromagnetic frequencies (EMFs) are generated by everything that uses electricity, including cell towers, cell phones, satellites, laptops, and microwaves. Because our bodies are composed of billions of electrically-charged cells and tissues, these EMFs can impact our health. For more information, please click here
 
Thanks to Dr. Tracey Diner of Magnetude Jewelry
 
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Energy healing therapy involves a practitioner channeling energy to a client, facilitating all bioenergetic systems towards greater health. Several dozen forms of energy healing therapies address the wide range of human conditions. Utilizing technique, intention, intuition and collaboration, it can work on all levels of the body, mind and spirit. Many report reduction in pain, stress and ailment. Greater peace of mind, ability to rest, sleep, a better outlook, a better outcome and a better life.
 
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Essential oils are natural, therapeutic oils used to mentally, physically and emotionally support your body. Certain oils such as lavender and wintergreen can combat everything from allergies to stress, providing healthy and safe alternatives to prescription medication.
 
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Float therapy involves floating in approx. 10 inches of warm water filled with high concentrations Epsom salts. This creates a floating experience resulting in a feeling of weightlessness and deep relaxation, stress relief and pain relief. It is often used for treatment of PTSD and anxiety issues. it is sometimes considered a form of meditation and has many other potential benefits.

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Guided Imagery (GI) is a therapeutic healing technique in which a facilitator uses descriptive language intended to psychologically benefit an individual or group of individuals. This technique incorporates the unconscious mind and imagery, intended for emotional and/or physical wellness and stress relief. GI may be meditative or interactive, allowing the client to discover or rediscover important information about themselves through the guidance of an intuitive counselor.

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The study and practice of using plants to treat illness and promote health. Herbal medicines include herbs, herbal materials, herbal preparations and finished herbal products that contain as active ingredients parts of plants and/or other plant materials, including flowers, fruit, seed, stems, wood, bark, roots, rhizomes or other plant parts.
 
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Homeopathy is a system of natural medicine that seeks to heal the body rather than simply treat disease symptoms. It has been used for over 200 years and is currently practied by over 500 million people worldwide.

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Directory.NationalCenterforHomeopathy.org

Homeoprophylaxis, also known as HP, orally introduces safe, homeopathic versions of diseases to the body in order to naturally stimulate the immune system. It is the safe use of diluted and potentized disease products (nosodes) or material from an animal, mineral or vegetable source to educate the immune system naturally.

 

Provided by Cilla Whatcott, World Wide Choice, CCH, PhD.

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Hypnotherapy is the therapeutic utilization of hypnosis (or related techniques like guided imagery) to alter unhealthy subconscious patterns or increase motivation. It is beneficial for stress relief as well as vocational and avocational self-improvement. Certified Hypnotherapists help clients relax into an altered state of consciousness (aka alpha or theta brainwave state) which enables an increased receptivity to positive suggestions customized for the client's benefit. Studies have proven hypnotherapy’s effectiveness to support behavioral changes (especially weight loss and smoking cessation), increase confidence and “reprogram” fears or phobias as well as to supplement other healing techniques.
 

 

Credited to Barbara Schiffman, C.Ht., yoursoulsupport.com

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Integrative medicine and health reaffirms the importance of the relationship between practitioner and patient, focuses on the whole person, is informed by evidence, and makes use of all appropriate therapeutic and lifestyle approaches, healthcare professionals and disciplines to achieve optimal health and healing.
 
 
 
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Kinesiology refers to the study of movement AND in the USA is synonymous with muscles as monitors (muscle monitoring/muscle testing). This allows for the opportunity to understand the body’s innate wisdom and what it needs for optimal health and wellbeing. Bioenergetic wellness has replaced kinesiology as a term for muscle testing / muscle monitoring and being a Kinesiologist is a regulated profession in Canada.
 
 
Thanks to Heather Phillips of Muscle Tuners International Inc.
 
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Martial arts are mind-body practices used for a number of reasons including physical, mental, and spiritual development; exercise; self-defense; competition; and the preservation of certain cultures.
The most common Martial Arts include:
  • Aikido
  • Capoeira
  • Hapkido
  • Jiu Jitsu
  • Judo
  • Karate
  • Krav Maga
  • Kung Fu
  • Muay Thai
  • Tae Kwon Do
  • Tai Chi
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A Medical Intuitive evaluates the current state of physical health of the human body using the skill of intuitive “scanning.” This evaluation provides specific information regarding the functioning of all body systems, including the impact of illness and disease. Medical Intuitives are noted for locating health issues that standard medical diagnostic tests may miss, as well as finding energetic imbalances preemptively before illness can manifest.

A Medical Intuitive also scans and evaluates the human energetic biofield, or the aura and major chakra systems, to locate areas of energetic imbalance. This can reveal unresolved emotional, mental, physical and/or spiritual traumas from a client or patient’s life experience, particularly those at the root, or cause, of current health concerns.

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Naturopaths are natural health practitioners who help you to solve your health issues without the use of drugs or surgery.  Naturopaths employ many different methods of healing, which may include herbs, tinctures, teas, essential oils, reflexology, energy work, supplements, nutrition, massage, accupressure, and other techniques.  

All techniques used by naturopaths are based on natural methods using food, water, air, exercise, sleep, energy and management of emotions.  Modern methods may be employed to enhance the treatments.  Naturopaths take the creed "First, do no harm" very seriously.  They believe that chemicals and prescription drugs are harmful to the body.  

The most important thing naturopaths do is to treat YOU as a whole person, not a set of symptoms.  Naturopaths will work with you to discover the CAUSE of your symptoms, so that they will go away permanently, completely, and naturally.

 

From Dr. Sherrie Reimers, N.D.

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Reiki is a form of alternative medicine developed in 1922 by Japanese Buddhist Mikao Usui.  Since originating in Japan, Reiki has been adapted into varying cultural traditions across the world. Reiki practitioners use a technique called palm healing or hands-on healing through which a "universal energy" is allegedly transferred through the palms of the practitioner to the patient in order to encourage emotional or physical healing.
 
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A popular form of natural therapy in Europe and Russia, Salt Therapy is also known as Haloherapy. It is a natural and holistic treatment for adults and children that has been known to help with respiratory system concerns like allergies and asthma, as well as skin conditions. It also promotes better breathing, sounder sleep and overall wellness.

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Shamanism is a practice that involves a practitioner reaching altered states of consciousness in order to perceive and interact with a spirit world and channel these transcendental energies into this world.
 
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Sound Healing uses the power of sound and vibration to restore one's body, mind, and soul.
 
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Thermography is using digital infrared camera imaging to see the surface of the skin reflecting the physiology in the sympathetic nervous system of what's happening internally in the body. Used as a health screening for inflammation, pre mammogram breast tissue, tumors, periodontal disease, infection pathways from the mouth through the trigeminal nerve to the heart, and many more early detection of hidden conditions within the body for early detection of heart disease cancer, etc.
 
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Vibrational Medicine is a term coined by R Gerber for any form of alternative healthcare that attempts to alter factors in a client which cause disharmony in the flow of vital energy. The goal in vibration medicine is to move, unblock or balance life energy over the physical, energetic and spiritual body.
 
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Many people who practice yoga do so as a form of preventative health care. Research has shown potential advantages resulting from yoga for several elements of well-being, including: 
  • Reducing stress for individuals of all ages and genders
  • Increasing strength and flexibility for physical fitness
  • Improving mental health and emotional wellness
  • Encouraging nutritious food choices and healthy exercise routines 
  • Better balance
The most common forms of yoga are:
  • Ashtanga
  • Bikram
  • Hatha
  • Iyengar
  • Kundalini
  • Vinyasa 
  • Swastika *image on left*
For more information from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) > click here 
 
And remember, blessed are the flexible for they shall not get bent out of shape!
 
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