The Founding Principles of Naturopathic Medicine
As Naturopathic Medicine becomes increasingly popular, (there are now over 400 licensed California-licensed natural medicine primary care doctors) many people have been wondering, "What exactly is Naturopathy?"
This is the first of three parts on the six guiding principles of naturopathic medicine - founded on medical tradition and scientific evidence. These principles are the foundation that all naturopathic doctors use to diagnose and treat patients.
The first principle that defines naturopathic medicine is to treat the cause, not merely the symptoms. If we compare our bodies to our cars, we know that there are a whole host of warning lights that can indicate potential problems, such as the "check engine" or "low gas" lights. When these lights appear, do we disconnect the light so we don't see it or do we try to find and fix the problem?
Likewise, when we experience pain, headaches, low energy, mood disorders, etc. - these are our body's "warning lights" that something is wrong. We can ignore the problem and hope it goes away and risk serious complications, another option is to take pharmaceutical drugs to mask these symptoms. And yet another option is to heed the messages and begin to understand what the underlying issues are.
Naturopathic doctors (NDs) are committed to helping their patients get answers to what might be causing their symptoms. Using depression as an example, is this very serious medical condition caused by an anti-depressant drug deficiency? Or, instead, could the problem be an imbalance of neurotransmitters and a lack of important nutrients (vitamin D, B vitamins, etc) that the brain needs to function properly?
The second principle in naturopathic medicine is do no harm. Hippocrates' instruction to physicians clearly states that whatever intervention a doctor can make is only acceptable if it will do no further damage to the patient's health. A good example of a naturopathic approach to healing a bacterial infection is, instead of killing all the body's bacteria with antibiotics (anti-life), to get rid of the "bad" bacteria, ND's would instead strengthen the body's immune system. Antibiotics rearrange the body's microorganisms, leaving an individuals' immune system weakened, and ripe for a very serious yeast infection. Although there are situations that antibiotics might be necessary, NDs would prefer to try a more natural, non-toxic approach.
Another example of this principle is to not suppress symptoms, which are the body's efforts to self-heal. The body may cook up a fever in reaction to a bacterial infection, and as our body heats up, it creates an inhospitable environment for the harmful bacteria, thereby destroying it. Of course, the ND would not allow the fever to get dangerously high, but also would not turn to fever-reducers as a first step.
Stay tuned for the next four principles of Naturopathic Medicine, and in the meantime, please feel free to contact Dr. Godby, ND at DrGodby@SacND.com or Meghan at DietitianMeghan@SacND.com with comments or questions.
Dr. Dennis Godby, Doctor of Naturopathy, Sutter Medical Foundation.
He may be reached online or at his Sacramento Office (916) 446-2591.
Placer County News HeadlinesGood News for FHA BorrowersRealtor, Julie Jalone, of MagnumOne Realty in Roseville, writes about the recent lowering of the FHA mortgage insurance premiums.
United Auburn Indian Community Invests in Danny Wimmer PresentsDanny Wimmer Presents one of the largest independent producers of destination rock music festivals in the U.S., announced today that it has received a significant investment from the United Auburn Indian Community Development Corp.
Roseville Offers Up Cash for GrassThe City of Roseville is offering up for $1,000 for your grass when converting water-thirsty turf with water smart landscaping
Invented Abundance by Mollie Oblinger in RocklinThe Ridley Gallery at Sierra College presents Invented Abundance, an exhibition of sculpture in which Mollie Oblinger examines California's water issues in response to the historic drought
Rocklin Resident Exhibition at Alex Bult GalleryIn February, The Alex Bult Gallery welcomes emerging artist and long-time Rocklin resident Timothy Mulligan in his first solo exhibition entitled Raw, Real & Reimagined.
50 Days of the Dead: Tennessee JedThe Dead return for a memorable performance on their home turf of Palo Alto in October of 1982 to play Frost Amphitheatre.
New California Laws for 2015 (Part 29)New California laws for 2015, part 29 includes finance lenders, vehicle registration, state teachers retirement, veterans, prepackaged food, dismissal criminal action and more.
Safeway and Albertsons' Merger Set to CloseAB Acquisition LLC (Albertsons) and Safeway Inc. today announced that they have received clearance from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for the companies' proposed merger
Placer County Unemployment Rate Hits 5.2 PercentPlacer County's unemployment rate dropped to 5.2 percent during December, reaching its lowest point since 2007.
50 Days of the Dead: Loser1990 seems like yesterday, but far from it. Stellar version of Loser in Albany,NY.
Rocklin Crime Report Digest Update (1-27-15)The Rocklin Police Department weekly crime report digest for the period of January 19 - 26, 2015.
FBI: Russian Spy Ring BustedCharges were filed against Evgeny Buryakov, a/k/a "Zhenya," Igor Sporyshev, and Victor Podobnyy in connection with Buryakov's service as a covert intelligence agent on behalf of Russia.