Naturopathy – What is it?
Naturopathy is a traditional healing modality that uses a holistic approach to wellness and aims to empower the patient to play an active role in their health.
The fundamental philosophy is structured around the therapeutic order which means the first step in the healing journey is to identify and remove the underlying cause of imbalance, triggers to the disease state and remove any obstacles to cure. For example if you have constipation the naturopath will take a case history and look for any dietary or lifestyle contributors to constipation such as a lack of fibre, dehydration, magnesium deficiency, stress etc. In this way diet and lifestyle interventions are the first line of therapy in the hierarchy of the therapeutic order.
The goal is to treat the underlying cause rather than just symptoms alone. When diet and lifestyle interventions are not enough a naturopath will employ nutritional or herbal medicines individually designed and tailored for the individual rather than the disease state. For instance 5 people with the same disease may receive 5 different herbal medicine blends as they are designed to improve the tone, integrity and function of relevant tissues and body systems for the individual. Naturopathic philosophy prohibits the suppression of symptoms without holistically stimulating the innate ability of the body to self heal and enhancing the vital force aka chi, prana, vitality, life force.
As each person is different the healing journey may take different amounts of time and there is no “magic bullet” or overnight cure in traditional holistic therapy. The modern naturopath creates a fusion of traditional knowledge and contemporary scientific evidence from clinical trials where available and is versed in the art of prescribing in a patient/person centred manor.
Other tools utilised by naturopaths include iridology, flower essences, homoeopathy, massage, counselling, nutritional and tongue analysis, collaboration and referral to other modalities such as medical doctors, psychologists, accupuncturists, osteopaths and chiropractors.
Core to naturopathic care is empowering the patient in a therapeutic relationship with doctor as teacher to educate the patient to enable the patient to play an active role in their healing, to have informed consent, to treat holistically in the therapeutic order, to first do no harm, to use nature as medicine and to seek out the underlying cause.
I hope you found this article informative and helpful in understanding what exactly Naturopathy is and I wish you the very best on your healing journey.
Disclaimer: This is information is for educational use only and does not substitute personal health advice. Consult with a practitioner for individual health advice if anything you have read here raises any questions or concerns about your health.