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May 28, 2004

More Americans Using Natural Remedies

A survey conducted by the US government reveals that many Americans use some kind of alternative medicine.

According to a survey of 31,000 in 2002, 36 percent of them use herbal remedies, acupuncture, chiropractic, yoga, massage, special diets or some combination of these.

Many Americans, 43 percent, also pray to achieve health benefits. In addition, deep breathing and meditation are also popular among about 10 percent of the people questioned.

The poll finds that people turn to such ancient techniques mostly to cure pain and stiffness, colds, anxiety and depression, even though there may be a drug or other sophisticated medical therapy available to deal with the problem.

One "surprising" finding: 28% of people using alternatives believe that conventional medicine would not help their health problem, writes lead researcher Patricia M. Barnes, MA, with the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

"The public makes the assumption that because it is natural, it is safe, but there is increasing research showing that when used inappropriately, these natural products can potentially be harmful," he stated.

"The World Health Organization estimates worldwide over 80 percent of humans use natural products."

Posted by linda at May 28, 2004 7:22 AM

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