Thursday, March 31, 2011

What is a Naturopath?

I am always surprised and quite amazed when I go somewhere and a person has no idea what a Naturopath is. But, I have to remind myself that it is a field that not many people know about... I was there once myself.

This prompted me to write this blog... to tell people the importance of seeing a Naturopath and having one on hand in times of need. The United States is a culture where many people depend on their primary care physician to tell them what is wrong with them. Most people only have the chance to sit with their physician for 10 minutes. Fifty percent of the time the diagnosis is incorrect and unnecessary medications are prescribed. So, what is a Naturopath, and why should everyone have one?

Naturopathy is the study and practice of using nature to facilitate in the body's natural ability to heal itself. It incorporates fresh food, water, air, sunshine, supplements, mind-body connection, and many other natural modalities that fit each person individually.

Naturopathy is based on many principles that were laid down by Hippocrates. These principles include:

First, do no harm: As Naturopaths we take an oath that we will do no harm. Naturopaths should never suggest any therapy or remedy they know many cause harm in some way. We use all natural substances, foods, and therapies to assist the body in its natural healing ability. 

Treat each person as an individual: Every person is different and unique. For 100 cases of depression, there are 100 different causes. A Naturopath works with the individual to determine the best treatment for themselves, usually NOT based on a protocol.

Address the fundamental causes of illness: Naturopaths work very hard and strive to find the ROOT cause of illness. Like I said above, for 100 cases of depression, there are 100 different causes and 100 different ways to heal that person. By finding the very root cause of disease and addressing that root, the Naturopath is able to facilitate in the person's healing process. The human body is amazing, and when given the proper nourishment (be it mentally, physically and/or emotionally) it WILL heal itself. 

Doctor as teacher: Naturopaths set aside at least one hour for each appointment. We strive to teach each of our clients how to heal themselves. The goal of the Naturopath is to become obsolete, teaching our clients enough and empowering our clients to heal themselves so they don't have to rely on an unreliable system.

Heal the whole person: We look at each person holistically: mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. We also look at each system as being interrelated to every other system, where the body synergistically works together. Many of our healing plans involve therapies that work on multiple levels. 

Use the healing power of nature: As Naturopaths we always use the healing power of nature, including: herbs, foods, water, sunshine, and rest. Many people don't even realize what an herb is or what it can do. Most people have never heard of homeopathy. There are many therapies and natural substances that we use to assist our clients healing processes.

As you can see above, I stated many times that we assist the human body in its own healing process. Many pharmaceutical drugs push against the body and force it to do something that is not natural. The person will feel better, but another symptom will pop up sometime down the road. They usually go back to their physician at that time and get another drug for that new symptom. Their symptom again is masked and yet again, another symptom pops up down the road. These symptoms are your body's way of telling you that something is wrong. If you have frequent headaches, something is wrong. If you have upset stomach, something is wrong. If you are constipated, something is wrong. These are all signs of imbalance and blockage in your body. These are only a few of the many reasons you should seek out a Naturopath and start on your path toward total health and wellness.

A Naturopath sets aside a large chunk of time to work with you thoroughly. They may look at your tongue, at your iris, at your fingernails, or at your toenails. They may feel your pulse. They may use other non-invasive forms of assessment like muscle response testing to find where your imbalances lay. The goal of the Naturopath is to really get to know their clients well, and to determine what is best for them in that time.

As a Naturopath I have seen so many miraculous cases of healing. Naturopathy is such a powerful healing tool, and every person should see a Naturopath! 

What can a Naturopath help you with?

EVERYTHING! We help many people with weight loss, headaches, constipation, insomnia, indigestion, mental fatigue, chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, weight loss, cold/flu, autism, seizure disorders, ADD/ADHD, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, multiple sclerosis and so much more!

The human body should not be thrown aside any longer. YOUR BODY HAS A UNIQUE ABILITY TO HEAL ITSELF WHEN GIVEN THE PROPER TOOLS! So, jump on your path to wellness!


Svea is a traditional Naturopath, classical homeopath and holistic doula. Her private doula practice can be found here. Her Montreal Natural Fertility site can be found here

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