So should you incorporate alternative medicine into your corporate wellness program and is it safe? Here’s what you should know:
While the health claims of alternative medicine are dubious and sometimes dangerous, it’s not all bad. Alternative medicine options like massage and yoga do work in helping employees relieve pain. Including these options in your corporate wellness program is a good idea in that it will help your employees relax and improve their mental health.
Alternative medicine claims are unproven. Before you decide to include alternative medicine in your corporate wellness program, you must be aware of the fact that many of the health claims are unproven or don’t work at all. In fact, many alternative health treatments can interfere with other treatments as prescribed by an employee’s doctor.
Many people decide to include alternative medicine because they assume that “natural” remedies are safer than treatments prescribed by doctors, but natural doesn’t always mean safe. Natural products can cause side effects like:
Thoroughly research alternative medicine before you incorporate it in your corporate wellness program. Doing so can prevent unwanted and unintentional side effects, keeping your employees healthy and safe.
When researching alternative medicine, finding reliable sources is important so you can get accurate, trustworthy information to pass on to your employees. When researching health claims, the CDC recommends that you consider the following:
By doing your research, you will be able to answer any questions your employees may have, like if a new health fad is safe.
Since alternative medicine like natural supplements are not regulated by the FDA as drugs or food, they don’t have to be approved before being put on the market. Also, some herbal medicines have been shown to contain contaminates like lead and mercury.
Alternative medicines like homeopathy, the practice of treating a medical condition through small, diluted natural substances, often contains high levels of alcohol and other ingredients that can cause dangerous side effects and drug interactions. Therefore, it’s good practice to avoid treatments like these altogether in your corporate wellness program.
If you decide to include alternative medicine in your corporate wellness program, arm your managers and employees with complete and accurate information about the benefits and risks. That way, employees won’t unknowingly endanger their health and managers can curb any potential problems.