Alternative Healing Methods

The science of Alternative Healing

There are some alternative healing methods which are labelled as 'alternative' or 'complementary'. Nonetheless, they are backed up by scientific research.

For example, I discuss in another article the following alternative healing tests :

  • tests for intracellular magnesium
  • tests for high fecal mercury levels
  • thermal imaging scans

These tests remain 'alternative' in the UK simply in the sense that they are not yet offered on the NHS (National Health Service).
It is possible that in other countries or on private health insurance such tests are available within conventional medicine.

Many alternative healing methods go on to become mainstream.

alternative healing
  • An old folklore remedy involving the healing properties of mould existed long before the cultivation of penicillin.
  • there are antimalarial drugs derived from a Chinese shrub known about since ancient times…
  • Statin drugs were made from mould…
  • aspirin derived from willow bark
  • Some medical practices offer acupuncture for pain relief.
  • Some GP (General Practitioner) are trained as homeopaths.

Some alternative healing methods later become validated by scientific research. Studies are now out which show the effectiveness of currently alternative methods for healing pain.

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The following section looks at the characteristics which distinguish alternative healing methods and tests from those offered by conventional medicine...

Contents below

How to choose amongst alternative healing methods

How do alternative healing tests vary from conventional tests?

Some (of many) alternative healing methods I have tried

How to choose amongst alternative healing methods

There are many alternative healing tests and treatments available for CFS/ME and any chronic illness.
Some may seem rather weird and wonderful if you are new to them.

Some may continue to seem rather weird and wonderful once you are familiar with them!

Use your judgment when deciding if an alternative healing practioner can help you.

I have never met a practitioner who was trying to con me. But I have met a few who had far more faith in their healing methods than was warranted.

Remember: no matter how enthusiastic a practitioner is about their alternative healing method, it is your money, your time, your investment of hope and your decision.

Many practitioners are highly trained and credited by a professional organisation. If you know the type of alternative healing you want, such as accupuncture or homeopathy, you can look up the relevant organisation to ask for a list of qualified practioners.

A recommendations from someone you know is wonderful if you can get it, even more so if the person was treated for the same chronic illness as yourself.

How does an alternative healing method vary from the conventional approach?

Each healing technique is different, but there tend to be some similarities which distinguish alternative healing methods from conventional ones.

With a conventional doctor you will often have tests done. These typically lead to a diagnosis. Treatment is then determined by this diagnosis.

This labeling approach does not allow for individual variations in causes and symptoms.

Once the label of a particular illness is assigned there is also a risk that if you develop an additional illness, it will be missed.

Benefits of Alternative Healing over a conventional approach:

  • A practitioner in alternative healing therapy typically tests you on each visit.
  • There is little or no attachment to giving you a specific diagnosis.
  • The treatment is tailored to your individual needs.
  • The approach of alternative healing therapy is usually holistic - the body is considered as a whole, rather than giving treatment being given to a particular part of the body.

It is unlikely that an alternative healing practitioner will diagnose a particular illness. They will and should advise you to seek tests and diagnosis from a conventional Doctor.

However, the practitioner may tell you if they have other patients with the same illness who have similar alternative healing test results to yourself.

If you are not yet diagnosed, the practitioner's experience with other people may enable you to push your medical practitioner to send you to an appropriate specialist for diagnosis.

Some alternative healing methods I have tried
and the methods they use for testing or 'diagnosis'

Below I list a few alternative healing methods that I have tried personally with practitioners:


The acupuncturist measures various pulses in your body to determine blocks in energy flow.

The energy flows are then restored by inserting small needles needles into the body.

I did not persevere beyond a few sessions of acupuncture. The practitioner said that my pulses rose during a session but the following week they were back to the previous levels. She was so honest that she said she was concerned she wasn't helping me enough. Although acupuncture did not change the Myalgic Encephalomyelitis symptoms for me it did reduce joint pain. I am also aware that back then, I was not good at resting, and did not have the support to rest. Perhaps under different conditions the acupuncture would have been more effective.

My experience from myself and others is that acupuncture is well worth trying if you have any joint problems.

Shiatsu Healing massage

Practitioners measure pulses in the same way as acupuncturists.

I had a lovely practitioner who was very gentle with me and was willing to do house visits.

Some practitioners will press on the body in a way which is too forceful for a person with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.


Kinesiologists use 'muscle testing' to determine which treatments your body needs.

Kinesiology can be used to ask any question of the body which can be answered Yes or No.

My understanding of the logic behind kinesiology is that your muscles connect with a greater source of knowledge than your conscious mind.

You can learn muscle testing for yourself, though I personally would rather allow someone else to do it.

Field Control Therapy is a alternative healing therapy which uses kinesiology and combines it with an approach that has some overlap with homeopathic principles.

I tried it because I had heard of someone with mercury fillings and mercury overload experiencing great health benefits.

Bio energetic healing, spiritual healing, reiki healing

A healer 'scans' your body with their hands to identify blockages.

Spiritual healing works with the principle that God, the divine, is working through the healer. The practitioner asks for guidance as to where to move their hands.

I certainly felt a lot going on, but there was no sustained improvement for me.

Self Healing

If you live with chronic illness you may - like so many of us - explore alternative healing methods at the hands of a practitioner. But I would also advise you to engage in a self-healing technique at least once a day.

It is cheaper! And allows you to receive a more sustained level of healing input.

One example of emotional self healing is to use visualisations to heal your inner child. You give your younger self the resources she or he needs to have formed more life-affirming beliefs about themselves.

Wishing you healing both within and beyond illness,


Katherine T Owen

Katherine T Owen runs this website -

She is author of Be Loved, Beloved ( or kindle)

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Disclaimer: I am not a medical practitioner. The articles on this website are not to be taken as medical advice. Please consult a medical practitioner as necessary.