Can Natural Therapies Succeed Where Modern Medicine Fails?
Naturopathic medicine is an eclectic approach to health that incorporates traditional diagnostic techniques with natural therapeutic modalities. Emerging in the early 1900s as a unique medical discipline, naturopathic medicine is presently experiencing unparalleled interest as a complete approach to wellness.
A primary philosophical concept of naturopathic medicine is that the body has the unique ability to heal itself, given the appropriate set of conditions. An example of these conditions include the optimal diet, customized nutritional supplementation, and herbal and hormonal support for essential organ function. With these improvements, the body is able to achieve a higher state of well-being and disease recovery.
What natural healing techniques are used by naturopathic physicians?
Naturopathic physicians have extensive training in dietary management, nutrition, botanical medicine, hydrotherapy, and homeopathy.
Are We What We Eat?
The foundation of wellness is avoiding foods that the body is intolerant to and providing the correct foods to fuel the body. The first step of dietary management is the detection and elimination of foods that are intolerable to the body. A six week to 3 month avoidance regimen and carefully planned reintroduction of intolerant foods helps alleviate the stresses placed on frequently overtaxed and inflamed digestive systems. This first step often decreases pain, increases energy and alleviates sinus and digestive dysfunction.
The second step of dietary management is providing specific foods for each individual’s unique metabolism. There are bad foods that are bad for everyone. There are good foods, some of which are good for some people and bad for others. A technique presently used to determine which good foods will help optimize cellular metabolism is metabolic typing. This technique monitors blood glucose and physical markers in an attempt to monitor shifts in the body in response to glucose and potassium challenges. Depending on the exact metabolic type, foods may be used to create acid or alkaline shifts in the body to promote the right pH for cellular function.
Nutrition – Thriving Beyond Food?
Modern agricultural techniques, stressful lifestyles, and environmental pollution have created greater nutritional needs for all individuals. Extensively trained to recognize vitamin and mineral deficiencies as well as the possible therapeutic indications for high doses of vitamins and minerals, naturopathic physicians commonly use nutritional supplements to treat functional and pathological disorders. Naturopathic physicians also have extensive training in metabolic cofactors essential to enzymatic pathways.
Botanical Medicine – Are There Benefits To Leaves, Roots And Berries?
With the rich variety of plants on this planet, many have been found to have therapeutic benefit for the body. Some of these herbs have undergone multiple research trials on their effectiveness. Others have an extensive history of use in the clinical setting. Substantial knowledge of historical herbal indications further permits customization of individualized herbal formulas.
Hydrotherapy – Can Water Cure?
A popular treatment modality of the nineteenth century, hydrotherapy remains an accepted tool to facilitate circulation and stimulates immunity and organ function. Hydrotherapy is the use of topical applications of alternating hot and cold water to the body with the intent of augmenting local circulation. Naturopathic physicians typically recommend hydrotherapy treatments for patients as an adjunct to further augment digestive and liver function.