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Wellness-related Use of Common Complementary Health Approaches Among Adults

Wellness-related Use of Common Complementary Health Approaches Among Adults: United States, 2012

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SOURCE:   Natl Health Stat Report. 2015 (Nov 4);   (85):   1–12 ~ FULL TEXT

Barbara J. Stussman, B.A., Lindsey I. Black, M.P.H.,
Patricia M. Barnes, M.A., and Tainya C. Clarke, Ph.D., M.P.H.,
and Richard L. Nahin, Ph.D., M.P.H.

National Institutes of Health
National Center for Health Statistics


Objective   This 12 page National Institutes of Health report presents national estimates of selected wellness-related reasons for the use of natural product supplements, yoga, and spinal manipulation among U.S. adults in 2012. Self-reported perceived health outcomes were also examined.

Methods   Data from 34,525 adults aged 18 and over collected as part of the 2012 National Health Interview Survey were analyzed for this report. In particular, whether adults who used selected complementary health approaches did so to treat a specific health condition or for any of five wellness-related reasons was examined, as well as whether these adults perceived that this use led to any of nine health-related outcomes. Sampling weights were used to produce national estimates that are representative of the civilian noninstitutionalized U.S. adult population.

Results   Users of natural product supplements and yoga were more likely to have reported using the approach for a wellness reason than for treatment of a specific health condition, whereas more spinal manipulation users reported using it for treatment rather than for wellness. The most common wellness-related reason reported by users of each of the three approaches was for ‘‘general wellness or disease prevention.’’ The majority of users of all three health approaches reported that they perceived this use improved their overall health and made them feel better. Yoga users perceived higher rates of all of the self-reported wellness-related health outcomes than users of natural product supplements or spinal manipulation.

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Keywords:   disease prevention • mind–body • nonvitamin, nonmineral dietary supplements • National Health Interview Survey


From the FULL TEXT Article

Introduction

Complementary health approaches include an array of health care systems, therapies, and products with a history of use or origins outside of mainstream medicine. Examples include yoga, chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation, and acupuncture. Previous studies have shown that many individuals use complementary health approaches for disease prevention and to improve health and wellbeing [1, 2], or to relieve symptoms associated with chronic diseases or the side effects of conventional medicine(s) [3, 4].

Persons who use complementary health approaches often have a holistic health philosophy, want greater control over their own health, and practice a ‘‘wellness lifestyle’’ [5, 6]. Previous studies have also shown that different approaches are used for different reasons [7–9]. For example, Hawk et al. 2011 [7] found that nearly 60% of users of massage therapy did so for reasons other than treatment of a specific health condition, whereas only 31% of naturopathy users, 15% of acupuncture users, and 18% of chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation users sought care for reasons other than to treat a specific health condition.


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