Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is a disease that severely weakens the immune system, making the body vulnerable to certain infections or cancers, which usually prove fatal. AIDS is caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), which can be passed along by sexual contact, by contact with infected blood, and from mother to fetus.
The goal of many alternative treatments is to treat HIV infection or AIDS as a chronic disease with which one may live for a long time. Patients often combine alternative medicine with conventional HIV and AIDS drugs in the hope that fewer allopathic drugs will be necessary and to minimize the drugs’ toxic side effects.
A Seattle study combined several alternative therapies into one naturopathic treatment program for HIV infection. The men who followed the program for one year experienced a decline in their HIV-related complications and an improved sense of well-being. Their treatments included:
- nutritional therapy
- herbal medicine
- hyperthermia therapy
- mind/body medicine