Answering the question “What is holistic medicine?” it is both simple and complex at the same time. The answer must be argued in order to take the reader, or the listener, beyond cultural preconceptions and walls. Despite the inflated and misleading use that has been made of it in recent decades, the term “holistic” remains the most appropriate definition to define a global approach to health for patients. The holistic view considers our organism as one and unique and as such it must be treated.
The word holism, together with the adjective holistic, was coined in the twenties by Jan Smuts, politician, intellectual and philosopher according to which the properties of a system are not given by the sum of the individual components, but it is the system that influences the parts that constitute it.
Over the years, the development fronts of this paradigm have multiplied, finding today applications in medicine, psychology, physics, philosophy, pedagogy and even in marketing. However, the typical example of a holistic structure remains the biological organism, since the living being as such must be considered as a unity-totality that cannot be expressed with all the parts that make it up.
What is holistic medicine?
What is Holistic Medicine? The holism current of thought can be applied to many disciplines. The term holism comes from the Greek όλος, olos, which stands for “totality”, “whole”. Holism in medicine represents a state of global health, the union of body, mind, environment and society in which biological, psychological and social factors are strongly interconnected.
The search for health in holistic medicine is oriented to the person and not to the disease, to the cause that generated a dysfunction and not to the symptom, to the system and not to the organ, to restore function by stimulating the body’s natural self-healing process. (just think of the self-regeneration capacity of cells, tissues, organs …). The goal that holistic medicine sets itself is not to cure a single organ or tissue, but to restore balance and well-being to the individual as a whole and to restore balance with the surrounding environment.
Another important aspect to underline concerns prevention (understood as a correct lifestyle) which is essential for maintaining a state of health. The attitude of each of us should therefore be responsible and aimed at preventing illness, both physically and mentally and spiritually.