Natural Cures for Alcoholism
With the ever increasing variety of different modern drug therapies that are being developed and that are
currently available for alcohol addiction, numerous people are justified in asking the following question: are
there any natural cures for alcoholism?
The $64,000 Question: Can Alcoholism Be Cured?
Although alcoholism can be treated, unfortunately, at this time and with the current research methods available,
a cure is not yet available.
Stated differently, even if an alcoholic has been abstinent for many years and has regained good health, he or
she is still very capable of a relapse and must continue to avoid all alcoholic beverages.
Moderate drinking or "cutting down" on one's drinking doesn't work for the alcoholic. Indeed, the only path to
successful recovery for the alcoholic is to totally refrain from drinking alcohol.
Even people who are highly motivated to remain sober, however, might experience one of more relapses before
reaching long-term sobriety.
Relapses are quite common and do not necessarily mean that the person is a failure or cannot recover from
If a relapse does, in fact, take place, however, it is very important for the individual to stop drinking and
get whatever additional support he or she needs in order to abstain from drinking.
Help From Your Health Care Practitioner
If your health care practitioner determines that you are not an alcoholic but are involved in a pattern of
alcohol abuse, he or she can help you to do the following:
- Evaluate the benefits of making positive changes to an unhealthy drinking pattern.
- Establish a drinking goal. For instance, while some people who abuse alcohol choose to abstain from alcohol
altogether, others feel that they can limit the amount that they drink.
- Identify the situations that "trigger" your alcohol abuse and help you develop non-alcohol, more healthy
As a real-life example, many people who have stopped drinking after suffering alcohol-related problems choose to
attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings for information and support.
And this was the case even though they were not been diagnosed as alcohol dependent.
Complementary Therapy for Addiction: Drumming out Drugs
Recent publications citing the experiences of clients and therapists suggest that substance abuse rehab programs
employing "drumming" and related community and shamanic activities can play a key role in treating drug and alcohol
Known as "Drumming out Drugs," these programs are used in various prisons, community centers, addiction
workshops and training programs, and in well-known rehabilitation programs.
Even though reliability and validity studies of the "Drumming out Drug" programs are lacking, evidence suggests
that drumming augments substance abuse recovery. These observations are corroborated by studies on the therapeutic
psychophysiological effects of drumming, mediation, shamanism, and other shamanic practices.
Traditional Chinese Medicine
All forms of Oriental medicine have their roots in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). TCM is the oldest
professional, continually practiced, literate medicine in the world. TCM is a body of health care that includes
acupressure, moxa, nutrition/food therapy, cupping, herbal medicine, acupuncture, tui-na massage, and medical
exercises such as qi-gong and tai-chi.
Complementary medicine means that TCM is frequently used in addition to conventional Western medicine. Modern
Western conventional medicine and TCM are the two major medical systems in the world today. TCM is one of the
earliest forms of holistic medicine, which addresses the mind, spirit, and the body.
In TCM, unlike most conventional medicines, treatment and diagnosis are centered on the patient as a whole
person, and less on the symptoms. Unlike most conventional medicines, TCM also used natural methods in treatment
People who have a preference for a more holistic and natural method of treatment are candidates for TCM. A good
illustration of this natural and holistic approach concerns the treatment of people with drug, alcohol, and eating
These dependencies have physical and psychological aspects or manifestations. TCM is relevant under such
circumstances due to the fact that it simultaneously addresses the mind, body, and spirit in the diagnosis and
treatment of the patients' dysfunctions.
Other problems such as chronic pain, sexual dysfunction, depression, incontinence, insomnia, tension headaches,
obesity, and anxiety, are examples of medical dysfunctions that TCM can diagnosis and treat due to their underlying
physical and psychological aspects.
In addition to the importance of the spirit, TCM views healing the mind as a vital aspect of healing the body.
Similar to biofeedback techniques, TCM practitioners can teach patients how to control ordinarily involuntary body
functions, such body temperature, muscle tension, and heart rate.
Unlike traditional biofeedback, however, TCM features a type of mind-body treatment biofeedback that does not
require hooking up a person to a machine.
Vitamins and Supplement Therapy
Various vitamin and supplement therapies have been proposed as "natural" ways to treat alcohol abuse.
For instance, a nutritional product entitled "Neu-Recover" claims to effectively treat alcohol abuse by
replenishing the neurotransmitters that were exhausted via repeated alcohol abuse over time.
According to the proponents of Neu-Recover, the following neurotransmitters are interrelated with alcohol abuse
and alcoholism: serotonin, dopamine, enkephalin, and GABA. When alcoholics use Neu-Recover and eat healthy food,
they will experience increased calm as their craving for alcohol subsides.
Some practitioners who advocate a "natural" approach to alcohol abuse point to nutritional supplements and herbs
that can be used to counteract alcohol withdrawal after a person stops drinking.
Many natural approach practitioners, however emphasize that natural withdrawal methods should not be employed as
substitutes for detox centers or for Alcoholics Anonymous and similar alcohol treatment programs.
Such a complementary focus has much in common with the holistic and natural TCM approach discussed above.
Conclusion: Natural Cures for Alcoholism
Since alcoholism cannot be cured and due to the fact that there is a variety of different treatment options
available, numerous individuals have started to look beyond the current "drug-oriented" medical profession as they
hope to find answers to the following question: are there any natural cures for alcoholism?
Though not as well studied or as conventional as the different drug therapies that are currently employed in
most parts of the United States, natural remedies such as vitamins and supplement therapies, "drumming out drugs,"
and traditional Chinese medicine provide hope to those who choose to use natural methods to treat their health
problems and illnesses, including alcoholism.