Diabetes Blogs

Alternative Healing and Diabetes

reiki healing In 2015, the availabilty of complementary or alternative forms of healing is widespread. There is growing acceptance of Oriental Medicine and acupuncuture, chiropractic, and various forms of massage, bodywork, and so-called "energy work" (eg: Reiki, Craniosacral Therapy, or Polarity Therapy), and research on the efficiacy of such practices and modalities to is mounting. 

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has its own National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH), and their website includes links to articles with titles such as "Are You Considering a Complementary Health Approach?", as well as pages dedicated to topics such as "Herbs at a Glance". 

Diabetes Research and Complementary Medicine

A relatively robust page on the NCCIH website is dedicated to the intersection of diabetes and complementary/integrative medicine, and it is here that earnest readers can peruse research on nutritional supplements and their impact on diabetes, as well as links to active medical studies on diabetes, such as a study entitled, "Group Acupuncture Treatment Effects for Painful Diabetic Neuropathy."

Using Discretion

As a person with diabetes, use discretion, critical thinking, and your innate intelligence to determine if a particular alternative/complementary practice or modality may be right for you.

There is a plethora of information available on the Internet, and the quality and reliability of such information varies widely. Anyone can publish an article or blog post on the Web, and authors can also inflate their expertise with little consequence. Be cirumspect and cautious in accepting Internet-based claims as fact, and always seek secondary sources that corroborate and/or criticize the claims that you've found. 

Seek Out Experts

Experts in their fields can be excellent sources of information regarding particular areas of medical specialty; professional organizations can also provide resources in this regard. 

For example, if you're researching the effectiveness of acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for the control of diabetic neuropathy, you can use the NCCIH webiste to review the current body of literature, you can speak with a local acupuncturist (LicAc) or Doctor of Oriental Medicine (DOM), and contact organizations like the American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine for further references or information. 

Meanwhile, even as you explore such modalities in the interest of your health and the management of your condition, it is prudent and advisable to discuss your plans, questions, concerns, and hopes with your primary medical provider and/or endocrinologist. If you have a diabetes educator as a trusted member of your medical team, consulting that individual may also shed light on these issues. 

Bear in mind that some allopathic (mainstream, traditional, or so-called "Western") medical providers may not be amenable to complementary medicine in any way, while others will be wholly supportive. If you'd like to explore these alternatives and your provider refuses to discuss them, you may want to seek a more open-minded medical provider with whom you can have non-biased conversations. 

It's Your Health, After All

If you have interest in pursuing complementary medical interventions or modalities in order to take deeper control of your health and well-being, it is completely your choice to do so. As mentioned above, a medical provider who is unwilling to discuss these modalities will be of no assistance in this regard, thus it's advisable to find a new provider rather than pursue these modalities in secret. 

It is entirely your prerogative to explore alternative treatments for your diabetes and other health conditions; it's also simultaneously prudent to keep all of your providers informed of the treatments you're pursuing, and the supplements that you're taking. 

By all means, explore and discover the various forms of treatment and symptom management available to you. At the same time, actively create a team of medical providers (both complementary and mainstream) who are willing to listen with an open mind, communicate with one another, and support you as you endeavor to live the healthiest life possible. 

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