using natural remedies to help the body heal itself
Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary health care system that blends modern scientific knowledge with traditional and natural forms of medicine. The naturopathic philosophy is to stimulate the healing power of the body and treat the underlying cause of disease.
Symptoms of disease are seen as warning signals of improper functioning of the body, and unfavourable lifestyle habits. Naturopathic Medicine emphasizes disease as a process rather than as an entity.
In addition to diet and lifestyle changes, natural therapies including botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, naturopathic manipulation, and traditional Chinese medicine/acupuncture, may also be used during treatments.
In Canada, the naturopathic medical profession’s infrastructure includes accredited naturopathic medical programs, standardized North American Board Exams (NPLEX) and jurisdictional exams, national standards of practice, and regulation in five provinces to date.
– Canadian Association of Naturopathic Doctors
Naturopathic medicine (or naturopathy) is based on the belief that the body can heal itself. It aims to improve health, prevent disease, and treat illness through the use of organic foods and exercise; a healthy, balanced lifestyle; and the use of treatments from other areas of complementary medicine. (These treatments include ayurveda, homeopathy, and herbal therapies.)
Naturopathy was developed in the late 1800s in the United States. Today, both naturopathic doctors and traditional naturopaths practice naturopathic medicine. A licensed naturopathic doctor (ND) attends a 4-year, graduate-level naturopathic medical school where he or she studies basic sciences and therapies such as herbal medicine, homeopathy, and bodywork. Naturopaths may attend training programs that vary in length and content, but they usually aren’t licensed.
Most naturopathic doctors and naturopaths believe in natural therapies, such as nutrition and lifestyle counselling. They may also suggest herbal medicines, homeopathic dilutions, physical medication (for example, therapeutic massage) or nutritional supplements. In some provinces, naturopathic doctors can also prescribe medications such as antibiotics.
– HealthLink BC