(NaturalNews) Despite bearing the brunt of years of mockery from mainstream medicine, alternative remedies continue to gain in popularity among Americans who actually want to cure their ills and improve their health. According to researchers from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), about 40 percent of Americans today utilize some form of treatment that is not officially taught in Western medical schools.
In response to the growing popularity of alternative treatments back in the early 1990s, Congress passed legislation to fund a new division of health called the Office of Alternative Medicine (OAM). And in 1998, Congress officially established the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) to act as a liaison between the scientific community and the public in matters relating to alternative medicine.
Since that time, NCCAM has helped to provide scientific backing for many alternative treatments such as chiropractic and acupuncture that have become increasingly more popular amongst the mainstream public. Though not always in full support of every alternative and natural remedy out there, the center provides a wealth of useful information about many therapies, and it has helped increase the popularity of non-conventional treatments.
Alternative medicine includes a lot more than just massage therapy and back adjustments, though. Finding natural ways to cure allegedly incurable diseases is part of alternative medicine as well, and increasing numbers of people are turning to alternatives for the treatment of serious illnesses.
A recent VOANews.com article highlights the case of Ann Sterud, an ovarian cancer patient that had unsuccessfully tried for years to cure her cancer with conventional surgery and chemotherapy treatments. She eventually gave up on that and decided to try vitamin C infusions instead, even though this method of treatment is not officially recognized by Western medicine as viable.
"When you feel like your time is starting to run out, you feel you just have to go 100 percent and look for alternatives and that is what I did," she said.