Charles tells doctors of the world to use alternative treatments

Herbs and holistic remedies could replace conventional therapies, the Prince of Wales will say next week

The Prince of Wales will urge doctors to start using unconventional techniques such as chiropractic, acupuncture and herbal medicines to treat serious illnesses, in a speech to the World Health Organisation next week.

Prince Charles will claim that such major chronic illnesses as diabetes and heart disease, which affect tens of millions worldwide, could be successfully treated using complementary medicines and a "whole body" approach to healthcare.

His comments, which will invite fresh complaints from his critics, are to be made in a keynote address to the annual WHO Assembly in Geneva on 23 May, where the Prince will set out his case for "integrated healthcare" to a global audience for the first time.

The Prince is expected to argue that doctors should put less reliance on conventional drug-based treatments and take a more "holistic" view by putting greater emphasis on preventive healthcare, diet and healthy lifestyles.

This would help tackle endemic diseases such as strokes, heart disease and diabetes which kill 35 million people annually, and which are the cause of 80 per cent of GP referrals in the UK each year, he will say.

The Prince also believes there is proven evidence that some mental illness can be treated without anti-depressants, for example, using the herb St John's wort for post-natal depression.

Doctors and governments should be focusing on diet, environmental pollution and reducing the use of harmful chemicals in homes and farming, he will say.

In a speech last year when he was made an honorary fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine, Prince Charles said that modern Western lifestyles played a major role in the rise of allergic diseases such as asthma, various cancers and in obesity.

"The human body has too often been mechanistically reduced to individual parts and treated with limited reference to the whole person," he said then.

"We need to harness the best of modern science and technology, but not at the expense of losing the best of what complementary approaches have to offer. That is integrated health - it really is that simple."

Officials at Clarence House say the Prince is gratified that the WHO has invited him to promote the case for complementary therapies and "integrated health" - a subject which he has championed for several decades, setting up the government-funded Foundation for Integrated Health in London.

He has frequently been attacked by the medical establishment for pursuing "crank" theories on health after he first advocated non-conventional medicine to the British Medical Association in 1982. Critics accused him then of a "flight from science".

His address to the World Health Assembly is a "sign of how far the debate has moved on", said one official. Integrated health was now the "subject of mainstream discussion".

But Prince Charles will avoid mentioning one of his most contentious personal interests - homeopathy, the widely disputed theory that minuscule doses of medicine can cure illness.

Prominent cancer specialists were also aghast when the Prince advocated the Gerson diet method of treating cancers. Michael Baum, emeritus professor of surgery at University College London, bluntly said Prince Charles had "got it wrong" and urged him to "exercise your power with extreme caution" when it came to health matters.

THE PRINCE'S WAY

ACUPUNCTURE The ancient Chinese science of inserting needles in key points on the body can help osteoarthritis, menopause symptoms and nausea in childbirth.

HERBAL REMEDIES Some have proven value - St John's wort for depression, and Chinese medicines for eczema and hay fever.

CHIROPRACTIC Mostly manipulating the spine, this can treat muscle and joint pain, migraine, asthma, menstrual pain and sports injuries.

DIET Prince Charles is a keen fan of organic, pesticide-free foods and supplements such as Omega 3 and fish oils, saying they improve health and cut the risk of illness.

Voices
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
Sport
The Pipes and Drums of The Scottish Regiments perform during the Opening Ceremony for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park on July 23, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland.
Commonwealth GamesThe actor encouraged the one billion viewers of the event to donate to the children's charity
Sport
Karen Dunbar performs
Entertainers showcase local wit, talent and irrepressible spirit
Sport
Members of the Scotland deleagtion walk past during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Commonwealth Games at Celtic Park in Glasgow on July 23, 2014.
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookA wonderful selection of salads, starters and mains featuring venison, grouse and other game
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
film
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
News
Very tasty: Vladimir Putin dining alone, perhaps sensibly
news
Life and Style
Listen here: Apple EarPods offer an alternative
techAre custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?
Arts and Entertainment
Top guns: Cole advised the makers of Second World War film Fury, starring Brad Pitt
filmLt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a uniform
News
The University of California study monitored the reaction of 36 dogs
sciencePets' range of emotions revealed
News
Snoop Dogg pictured at The Hollywood Reporter Nominees' Night in February, 2013
people... says Snoop Dogg
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from Shakespeare in Love at the Noel Coward Theatre
theatreReview: Shakespeare in Love has moments of sheer stage poetry mixed with effervescent fun
News
Joining forces: young British men feature in an Isis video in which they urge Islamists in the West to join them in Iraq and Syria
newsWill the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?
Arts and Entertainment
The nomination of 'The Wake' by Paul Kingsnorth has caused a stir
books
News
i100
Life and Style
food + drinkZebra meat is exotic and lean - but does it taste good?
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    BI Manager - £50,000

    £49000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client is...

    BI Project Manager - £48,000 - £54,000 - Midlands

    £48000 - £54000 per annum + Benefits package: Progressive Recruitment: My clie...

    VB.Net Developer

    £35000 - £45000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: If you're pa...

    SAP Business Consultant (SD, MM and FICO), £55,000, Wakefield

    £45000 - £55000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: SAP Business...

    Day In a Page

    Screwing your way to the top? Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth

    Screwing your way to the top?

    Good for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, says Grace Dent
    Will the young Britons fighting in Syria be allowed to return home and resume their lives?

    Will Britons fighting in Syria be able to resume their lives?

    Tony Blair's Terrorism Act 2006 has made it an offence to take part in military action abroad with a "political, ideological, religious or racial motive"
    Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter, the wartime poster girl who became a feminist pin-up

    Beyoncé poses as Rosie the Riveter

    The wartime poster girl became the ultimate American symbol of female empowerment
    The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones: Are custom, 3D printed earbuds the solution?

    The quest to find the perfect pair of earphones

    Earphones don't fit properly, offer mediocre audio quality and can even be painful. So the quest to design the perfect pair is music to Seth Stevenson's ears
    US Army's shooting star: Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform

    Meet the US Army's shooting star

    Lt-Col Steven Cole is the man Hollywood calls when it wants to borrow a tank or check a military uniform
    Climate change threatens to make the antarctic fur seal extinct

    Take a good look while you can

    How climate change could wipe out this seal
    Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier for the terminally ill?

    Farewell, my lovely

    Should emergency hospital weddings be made easier?
    Man Booker Prize 2014 longlist: Crowdfunded novel nominated for first time

    Crowdfunded novel nominated for Booker Prize

    Paul Kingsnorth's 'The Wake' is in contention for the prestigious award
    Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster to ensure his meals aren't poisoned

    Vladimir Putin employs a full-time food taster

    John Walsh salutes those brave souls who have, throughout history, put their knives on the line
    Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

    Tour de France effect brings Hollywood blockbusters to Yorkshire

    A $25m thriller starring Sam Worthington to be made in God's Own Country
    Will The Minerva Project - the first 'elite' American university to be launched in a century - change the face of higher learning?

    Will The Minerva Project change the face of higher learning?

    The university has no lecture halls, no debating societies, no sports teams and no fraternities. Instead, the 33 students who have made the cut at Minerva, will travel the world and change the face of higher learning
    The 10 best pedicure products

    Feet treat: 10 best pedicure products

    Bags packed and all prepped for holidays, but feet in a state? Get them flip-flop-ready with our pick of the items for a DIY treatment
    Commonwealth Games 2014: Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games

    Commonwealth Games 2014

    Great Scots! Planes and pipers welcome in Glasgow's Games
    Jack Pitt-Brooke: Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism

    Jack Pitt-Brooke

    Manchester City and Patrick Vieira make the right stand on racism
    How Terry Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

    How Newton tragedy made iron men seek help to tackle their psychological demons

    Over a hundred rugby league players have contacted clinic to deal with mental challenges of game