The Whole Picture

Back in January of this year I wrote an article about the multi-dimensional aspect of human beings. The premise of the article was that we are more than just our physical bodies, and in fact we have multiple energetic bodies or layers that represent multiple aspects of ourselves.

What happens when these ‘other selves’ are not well or feeling under the weather, so to speak? These diseases are sometimes expressed through our temperament, emotions, the state of our mental well-being, as well as our physical bodies. When faced with a particular physical ailment we can often enhance the healing process if we tend to our mental, emotional and even spiritual health. Attending to our whole being facilitates healing on a deeper level.

In today’s modern world, science and metaphysics are joining hands more and more to branch allopathic and ancient healing practices. Whether it be a lifestyle choice or desperation after having tried all medical options, more and more people are turning to alternative therapies for wellness. Scientific research verifies the healing benefits of complementary medicine, and hospitals and medical schools around the world are incorporating alternative therapies in their services at an ever-increasing rate.


Prevention is the Best Medicine

A natural diet that reduces the amount of processed foods consumed, a life regime that includes nutritional supplements, herbal remedies, exercise, relaxation, psycho-spiritual counseling, meditation, breathing exercises, Yoga and other self-regulatory practices, are all examples of how we can nurture our body, mind and soul. Holistic health should be a marriage of the best of modern scientific diagnosis and monitoring techniques, together with alternative modalities that look beyond symptoms and address the whole person.


Not a Replacement but a Partnership

Integrative Care (IC) — the blending of alternative/complementary medicine with conventional medical care — is on the increase. Patients are seeking out IC and prepared to pay out of pocket for it. Health care providers are increasingly seeing the value of providing complementary therapies as a support for medical treatments. Some health conditions that have shown success with IC include allergies, arthritis, asthma, backaches, headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, menopausal discomforts, neurological disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome and many more.


Higher Level Wellness

Examples of alternative therapies include acupuncture, osteopathy, homeopathy, massage therapy, energy healing, psycho-spiritual counselling and much more. These therapies emphasize prevention, health maintenance and ‘higher’ level wellness that often include some sort of introspective activity such as Yoga, meditation or simply a walk in nature.

Hanoi offers a fair range of complementary/alternative therapies. Along with the traditional Vietnamese healing arts, there are several Western practitioners providing services. Contact the author for more information on holistic health care in Hanoi or access the Hanoi Holistic Health Guide at

Karen Gay, A-Roaming Bodyworker is a holistic health practitioner practicing in Hanoi. For information on the types of services provided visit

Karen Gay

A true global citizen, Karen has lived and travelled overseas for more than 20 years. Her current journey has led her down the rabbit hole. She's not sure she'll resurface. You can follow her on and


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