Integrative & Holistic

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Integrative & Holistic - Informative Purposes

Complementary, Alternative, or Integrative Health Care 

We’ve all seen the words “complementary,” “alternative,” and “integrative,” but what do they really mean? 

This fact sheet looks into these terms to help you understand them better and gives you a brief picture of the mission and role of the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) in this area of research. The terms “complementary,” “alternative,” and “integrative” are continually evolving, along with the field, but the descriptions of these terms below are how we at the National Institutes of Health currently define them.

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