Young people are generally healthy, but on the off-chance they’re not, a new survey reports that millennials are much more accepting of natural healing alternatives than any other generation.
Most traditional medical settings recommend sticking to traditional treatments and adding in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). But this report by the Natural Marketing Institute, published in The Fiscal Times, says most people in their 20s and 30s are embracing CAM, which includes everything from massage, meditation, acupuncture, and yoga, to herbal, plant-based supplements and homeopathic medicine.
Roughly 11 percent of millennials used homeopathic medicine in 2013, up from four percent just a few years earlier, according to a 2013 report by the Natural Marketing Institute. To compare, only six percent of baby boomers and seven percent of Generation X use those same natural treatments.
Most people, millennials included, use CAM to maintain their well-being and prevent the development of any serious health conditions. But this survey found that the younger generation in particular is more inclined to use these natural modalities exclusively instead of defaulting to traditional treatments from a medical doctor. For example, see more on how yoga may help manage symptoms for fibromyalgia.
Maryellen Molyneaux, president of the Natural Marketing Institute, explains that because millenials are “constantly exposed to new, new, new and different, different, this generation are early adopters and they are more likely to be accepting of newer ideas and certainly alternative medicines and alternative products.” Check out these 8 natural cures for arthritic knee pain.
Regardless of western medicine’s constant reminders that many alternative modalities do not have scientific proof of effectiveness, prestigious medical schools are taking note of the millennial interest in alternative medicine. Harvard, Boston University, and Duke are offering more and more electives in mind and body practices.
If you are taking prescription medication or are being treated for any given condition or disease, check with your doctor about how alternative treatments may affect your existing treatment plan. Most younger people feel that these more holistic treatments are cleaner, safer, and more in line with their values than traditional medical treatment. Do your own research, and see if these natural alternatives align with your values and vision for your health.