Naturopathic Medicine 101

by Nov 13, 2013Sunscreen Tips for Kids

Parties are always fun for me. If I am not careful, I can talk about work the entire evening. Fortunately, I love my profession. Last night’s event was no exception.

With a friend, arm in arm, we review the snack table. She is headed for the nachos with dip and I kindly steer her to the cut vegetables. With a plate full of veggies we begin to mingle with the growing crowd.

It begins with the usual pleasantries and then eventually someone asks, “What do you do?” Heads turn when I say, “I practice Naturopathic Medicine.” One person replies that they have seen a Naturopathic Doctor before and received acupuncture for a chronic back problem. I reply “Yes, acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine is one modality that we use. We also are trained in physical medicine, botanical medicine, homeopathic medicine, clinical nutrition and lifestyle counselling.”

Another woman comments that she is interested in becoming a Naturopath. Her eyes widen when I explain that prospective students must obtain an undergraduate degree with the basic prerequisite science courses and then prepare for 4 years of the program with two state board exams. I explain encouragingly that if you love what you do, the studying is enjoyable and the career is rewarding.

With a gathering crowd, I explain that the biggest misconception about seeing an ND is that one has to be sick or have a major health concern. I let them know that our medicine is also a preventative medicine. If a family member or parent has diabetes or cardiovascular problems, ND’s can review diet, lifestyle and protocols that can reduce known risk factors. The goal is optimal health. I explain that it is our goal to address the whole patient, treat underlying causes and also respect the mind-body connection.

With my friend still close by, we exit the crowd by asking where the drinks are located. My friend goes for the coke and of course, there are no herbal teas here. I choose the unknown punch bowl concoction. My friend agrees when I say “We all have to live a little.”

On our way home in a cab, I reflect on the evening. We are what we say and what we do. I practice what I preach but once in a blue moon, I have my lattes and cheesecake too. And that is what reaching optimal health demands – making conscious choices. A look out the window in the fresh night air reveals a friend. There it is, the moon with a shade of blue….

Written by Dr. Odessa Gill

Reposted from Daily Squeeze.

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