Treat the sick rather than an illness. This fundamental credo of complementary medicine emphasizes the patient’s personality: his physical state, his psyche, his human and material environment, his history… What does this comprehensive and detailed approach to our life bring us concretely?
“The microbe is nothing. The land is everything. Shortly before his death, the microbiologist Louis Pasteur would have conceded it to the physiologist Claude Bernard. For the latter, the ground is the “internal environment”: the blood and lymph which feed our tissues and our organs. Keeping it constant makes it possible, in fact, to avoid a poor general condition (decline in immune defenses, fatigue, etc.), liable to generate physical, mental and emotional illnesses. Today, this notion of field has broadened and no longer concerns only the blood and lymph: it includes the physical, the psyche and the family, professional, material, natural environment …
The field is all facets of ourselves. A global vision of being that Asian medicines have favored for millennia and that they have transmitted to us. The enthusiasm of the French for homeopathy, a Western method included in this approach, shows it. Eight out of ten households use these granules based on natural substances to relieve winter ailments, bruises or stress by avoiding chemicals (source: “The French and homeopathic medicines”, Ipsos for Laboratoires Boiron, June 2010 .).
According to body philosopher Bernard Andrieu, “people combine these natural medicines in a spirit of“ bodily ecology ”: I am responsible for my impact on the environment, but also for the traces it leaves in my body. “The use of the term” ecology “is not neutral: taking care of our land subjected to an unbalancing climate (pollution, stress, bacteria, etc.) does not also ensure our sustainable development?
It will be understood: the microbe has a greater chance of triggering a disease if it encounters a context favorable to its expression. While modern Western medicine will directly fight the germ, virus or bacteria, therapies that adopt the notion of the ground will first and foremost cultivate the means to avoid the intrusion of these harmful invaders! They are therefore not intended to treat the symptoms of a disease, but to keep a person healthy.
Bernard Andrieu is the author of a box set of 4 books, Body ecology (Atlantica, 2011)
Health, a fragile balance
An art more than a technique. Indeed, this philosophy supposes to permanently restore a balance as vulnerable as the tightrope walker on its wire. It doesn’t take much for a pathogen to express itself. Let’s take a simple example: we all once said “my stomach hurts”. First reflex: suspect a digestive problem such as ulcer, gastroenteritis … Without hiding the infection or examining the possible responsibility of a spoiled food product, field medicine will first take an interest in this “I” that is occurring. complains of bloating or tightness in the abdomen. Am I more of the anxious type, ready to “give me the fuck” for nothing? Do I tend to prefer spicy dishes? Are my family relationships in good shape or is my mother “blowing me up”? Everyone experiences suffering in their own way, depending on their “nature”. A health problem does not arise just anytime, anyhow in anyone.
Tamar, François, Flore and Ariane have found the approach that suits them. Find their testimony.
By taking into account all our dimensions, holistic approaches require more detailed attention. The first meeting lasts on average 1h30. Time for practitioners to submit to an in-depth questionnaire that helps them define our field: pathologies of ascendants, food tastes (predilection for salty, raw …), reaction to hot, cold, pain, restless gait or calm, time of night waking up, frequency of sexual intercourse… Some traditional Asian doctors even seek to identify the characteristics of our professional or family environment and the values that guide us. The autopsy of a lifetime! The pulse, tongue, skin, hair, eyes or voice are also examined.
Suddenly, the treatment (acupuncture, herbal medicine, physical exercises, nutritional recommendations…) which aims to reduce the gap between our basic constitution and our current state is necessarily tailor-made. A word of advice: take out your health record containing valuable information on your childhood (birth weight, height changes, childhood illnesses) and do not hesitate to record the history of your pathologies, from sprain to thrust. ‘herpes. Anything that helps the therapist to get to know us better also allows him to provide more informed care and advice.
Prevent rather than cure
These field medicines provide care. But their great strength is above all to intervene in a preventive way. To consult only in case of worrying symptom goes against their approach. The proof, the old Chinese doctor did not get paid when his patient fell ill, but only when he had managed to keep him in good health! In addition to recommending check-ups, these therapies invite us to live in better understanding with all that surrounds us. Let us keep as a basic principle that maintaining good land amounts to carrying out selective sorting on a daily basis: feeding on what is good for us and eliminating what is harmful.
This implies eating organic and seasonal in line with your therapeutic profile, but also knowing how to admire the landscape, regulate your sleep, flourish in an activity: gardening, meditation or energy gym. What to introduce more spirituality in his life! Removing the negative involves draining the emunctories (the waste elimination pathways such as the liver, intestines, kidneys, lungs and skin) with nutrients, massages or sweating techniques. And to avoid all kinds of pollution: pesticides, chemical drugs, electromagnetic fields such as parasitic thoughts or unpleasant surroundings. Thus, advice on healthy living is no longer an appendix to medical practice. Traditional Chinese medicine is based as much on pharmacopoeia and acupuncture as on dietetics, massage and qigong. Likewise, Ayurveda encompasses food, herbal medicine, manual care, meditation, yoga …
Basically, we have acquired the idea that the body can repair itself, supported by genetic research on stem cells. And the side effects of chemical drugs also prove the interplay between the different dimensions that make up the person.
Psychoanalyst Anne-Marie Filliozat approves this holistic vision. “But you have to consult your inner doctor with a certain relaxation. A nutrient can harm the body if we are convinced that it is not suitable for it. Moreover, these non-surgical therapies do not cure everything. “Improving the pitch does not cure cancer, AIDS, syphilis, insulin-dependent diabetes or certain microbial infections. But that supports the treatment ”, specifies Albert-Claude Quemoun, president of the Scientific Homeopathic Institute and author of Homeopathy: a practical guide (Leduc.s Editions).
For its part, the World Health Organization lends these “unconventional” medicines a “complementary” or “alternative” action. Do we have to believe in it for “it to work”? “All drugs have a placebo effect,” recalls Albert-Claude Quemoun. However, we have successfully treated crayfish victims of muscle weakness and vines affected by mildew by administering homeopathy drops… And we cannot say that they believed it! ”
Anne-Marie Filliozat is the author of Help yourself, your body will help you, (Albin Michel) and launched the site http://lecerclepsychosom.free.fr
Beware of quackery!
Lemon juice against cancer and gurus promising people suffering miraculous cures… The 2011 report of the Interministerial Mission for Vigilance and the Fight against Sectarian Abuses (Miviludes) highlights a worrying trend: sects and charlatans invade the field of medicine under the guise of “natural” or “spiritual” therapies.
However, the law is very precise: in France, among the complementary therapies, only homeopathy and acupuncture have the legal status of medicine and must therefore be practiced by doctors. For other disciplines (naturopathy, osteopathy, aromatherapy, etc.), it is better to talk about adjunct therapies and classify tai chi, meditation or dietetics in the category of healthy lifestyle practices. Nevertheless: the patient must first find out about the skills of those who provide them.
Thierry Janssen’s opinion
“Finding your way around the somewhat confused landscape of unconventional medicine is not easy. The multiplicity of therapeutic proposals and the lack of legislation governing practices mean that patients are on their own. To choose a “good” therapist, it is better to avoid those who claim to heal every time, exclude other approaches and practice prohibitive prices. The temptation could be to indulge in “therapeutic tourism” without exploring a path in depth. This would be a shame, because it takes time to assess the effectiveness of a method. ”