alternative medicine


Definition of alternative medicine

: any of various systems of healing or treating disease (such as chiropractic, homeopathy, or faith healing) not included in the traditional medical curricula of the U.S. and Britain

Examples of alternative medicine in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Osteopaths, titled as D.O.s in the field, receive similar training to a traditional M.D. — but a greater emphasis is placed on treating a person for holistic health using elements of alternative medicine. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, "25 Types of Doctors and What They Do for Patients' Health," 15 Sep. 2020 The first season took topics covered in depth on Goop -- from the female orgasm to psychedelics to energy healing -- and adapted them as shorts, led by a range of doctors, alternative medicine practitioners and the staff of Goop. Variety,, "Gwyneth Paltrow’s ‘The Goop Lab’ renewed for Season 2 at Netflix," 10 Sep. 2020 There are a number of health claims and alternative medicine regimes circulating the internet — some good, some bad. Danielle Campoamor, Woman's Day, "Everything You Need To Know About Seed Cycling and How it Affects Your Hormones," 9 Aug. 2020 There are many places online (such as to find information about alternative medicine and therapies. Lee Woodruff, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Lessons from military caregivers amid coronavirus," 7 Aug. 2020 This healing method has been successful in numerous studies, and is listed on Britain's National Health Service’s website as a complementary and alternative medicine because it is considered a treatment that falls outside of mainstream health care. Melissa Badamo, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Benefits derived from putting essential oils in belly button are questionable," 3 July 2020 India has a long tradition of alternative medicine, which are all governed by the ministry of ayurveda, yoga & naturopathy, unani, siddha, and homoeopathy (Ayush). Manavi Kapur, Quartz India, "Ramdev’s ayurvedic medicine for Covid-19 has kicked up quite a storm," 24 June 2020 The Goodyear firefighter had undergone more than $100,000 in treatment, including countless rounds of chemotherapy, radiation and other alternative medicines. Mackenzie Shuman, azcentral, "Firefighters face an outsized risk of cancer. What is being done to keep them safe?," 11 Feb. 2020 In 2016, Forbes reported the device had begun appearing at alternative medicine practices in the U.S. without approval from the Food and Drug Administration. Ian Richardson, USA TODAY, "Fact check: UV light injections are not a common medical treatment — or a COVID-19 cure," 30 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alternative medicine.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of alternative medicine

1972, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of alternative medicine was in 1972

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Last Updated

20 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Alternative medicine.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2020.

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More Definitions for alternative medicine

alternative medicine


Medical Definition of alternative medicine

: any of various systems of healing or treating disease (as homeopathy, chiropractic, naturopathy, Ayurveda, or faith healing) that are not included in the traditional curricula taught in medical schools of the United States and Britain

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