Article

Journal of Immigrant Health

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 23-31

Use of Alternative Folk Medicine by Mexican American Women

  • Rebecca A. LopezAffiliated withDepartment of Social Work, California State University Email author 

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Abstract

Nontraditional health care resources available to Mexican Americans are many. The Mexican culture is rich with alternative health and illness beliefs and remedies which have their origins in ancient Mestizo/Indian folklore which viewed the causes of illness to include social, spiritual, and physical forces. This perception calls for culturally relevant folk practitioners who can treat all aspects of the perceived illness. This study of 70-Mexican American women explored their knowledge of and use of alternative Mexican folk medical practitioners in their own health maintenance. Results provided some evidence that, even among highly assimilated Mexican American women, there persist traditional, indigenous beliefs, and practices.

KEY WORDS

health Latinas alternative folk medicine