An Introduction to Integrative Medicine

By Kimberly Meiners, MD, Lane Family Practice

 

What is Integrative Medicine? 

Integrative Medicine combines Western, mainstream medicine with evidence-based holistic treatments (examples listed below) to create a personalized treatment plan.

Providers of Integrative Medicine emphasize the whole person so all of the factors that influence health, wellness, and disease are taken into consideration - including body, mind, and spirit. 

As a physician, it is rewarding for me to empower patients to learn healthier lifestyles and become engaged in the medical decision making process.  Around 40% of people across all age ranges use complementary and holistic treatments, including massage, meditation, biofeedback, acupuncture, chiropratics, yoga, mindfulness, supplements, and most importantly an emphasis on diet/exercise/lifestyle to increase their overall wellbeing.

Integrative Medicine is now practiced and researched in nearly half of the medial schools in the country.  Many leading medical facilities have Integrative Medicine departments such as the Mayo clinic, MD Anderson, John Hopkins, Emory, Duke, and Harvard to name a few. 

There are 26 Integrative Medicine fellowships throughout the country, as well as a new medical board certification through the American Board of Physician Specialties that began in 2015.

 

5 Simple Recommendations to Inspire Health This Fall

  1. Create, experience, and appreciate Joy every day.
  2. Meditate 5-20 minutes a day, focusing on breath awareness to calm and still the mind. Meditation research continues to uncover new benefits including improved memory, decreased blood pressure, decreased irritable bowel symptoms, improved insomnia, and reduction in anxiety and depression symptoms.
  3. Eat a Healthy Diet with 3-5 servings each of colorful veggies and fruits. Eat more nuts and limit/eliminate processed foods, fried foods, carbonated sodas, sugars, white and refined flours, added preservatives, added salt, and artificial sweeteners.
  4. Exercise for 30 minutes, 5 days a week, using a combination of aerobics, strength training, and stretching. If you are not used to exercising, try a 10 minute walk every day this week.
  5. Be attentive to your mind body connection. This is another way of saying “Be Mindful.”  Thoughts and emotions can have both a positive and negative impact on our health.

If you’ve gotten off track with your health resolutions, fall is a great time of year to start an exercise program as the weather starts to cool. Also, be sure to enjoy seasonal produce this October – December, such as fresh spinach, kale, broccoli, carrots, citrus, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, winter squash, green peas, basil, Brussels sprouts, mushrooms, onions, and radishes.

 

Integrative Medicine in Zachary

I infuse elements of Integrative Medicine into my patient care approach every day.  As a result, patients can achieve greater overall wellbeing as well as optimize their health. I like to remind everyone to not just focus on their health when there is a problem, but to make Integrative Medicine a part of their daily routine.

To schedule an appointment Dr. Kimberly Meiners at Lane Family Practice, please visit LaneRMC.org or call 225-654-3607.