Peaceful Medicine
by Caryn Polito, MS

Shining Waters Publishing LLC, 2015. ISBN 978-1-312-86373-6.
Reviewed by Diane Stanton
Posted on 08/29/2015

Nonfiction: Active Life

Dissatisfaction with the effectiveness of mainstream healthcare has provoked a strong response from those searching for alternative approaches and treatments. For many, sidestepping the accepted insurance subsidized treatment approaches can be disconcerting at best. There's safety in accepting the standard even when the standard doesn't seem to be working. Yet there is also an overriding desire to be healthy.

In her book, Peaceful Medicine, Caryn Polito addresses this desire for better health. She notes that "quick fixes like pills and surgery" address symptoms which are merely the "surface level indicators of the body's underlying condition." Springing from a personal experience which she describes early in the book, Polito reveals that she wishes to explore an approach "that doesn't come from medical treatments that inflict pain and suffering on your body, but through helping your body's own natural energy heal itself."

To this end, Polito interviews a variety of holistic practioners. She offers information on their specialties including acupuncture, Ayurveda, chiropractic, herbalism, massage and Reiki, naturopathy, and nutrition. Her descriptions are easily comprehensible to the lay mind and illustrated with personal stories of users of the different approaches. I never quite understood chakras or meridians but found her descriptions of both to be specific and understandable. Her final two chapters offer tips on financing care and creating a health plan. Included in this last chapter is a helpful chart comparing the different treatments and conditions.

Polito offers some valuable information on alternative medicine. Her book should be particularly appealing to those who may be suffering from a chronic condition and frustrated by the merry-go-round of specialists and treatments.

Caryn Polito has focused her career on improving quality of life for people. Ms. Polito earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a master's degree from the Opus College of Business at the University of Saint Thomas in Saint Paul. Currently, she works to ensure that low and moderate income Minnesotans have access to safe and healthy affordable housing. When not working or researching holistic healthcare, she enjoys spending time with her husband and White Shepherd, enjoying fresh air, clean lakes, sunshine, and shadows of trees on the moonlit snow.

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