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 HeadlinesLoomis Students to Learn About Pediatric Iron Lung for World Polio DayIn recognition of World Polio Day, Rotary Club of Sunset Loomis will bring a pediatric iron lung to Loomis Grammar School and Loomis Basin Charter School
Esteemed Roseville Historian DiesLeonard "Duke" Davis, considered by many the foremost authority on the history of Roseville, passed away on Friday, October 10.
Michaels Store in Auburn to Open November 16thMichaels, North America's largest arts and crafts specialty retailer, announces the grand opening of its new Auburn store, featuring an inspiring new design, located at 2785 Bell Rd
Janina VanVooren at Patrons Club November 3rd Rocklin, CA - The Patrons Club, a volunteer arm of the Sierra College Foundation, invites the public and those interested in becoming members of the organization to attend
Roseville Men's Tennis Team Edged Out in National ChampionshipsThe men's tennis team from Roseville, Calif., representing the USTA Northern California Section, finished second at the USTA League Adult 18 & Over 2.5 National Championships
Dermatomyositis: Woman Battles Weakness, RashIn 1993, and only two weeks after having given birth to her second child, Becki Lanser of Cary, North Carolina, was experiencing severe muscle weakness and fatigue.
Jeep Grand Cherokee: More Refined Than EverA 2014 "refreshening" has given the Grand Cherokee a more modern, sophisticated look that will have admirers giving it the double take.
People & Culture Days in Rocklin October 22- 23Rocklin, CA - Have you ever sampled Persian food? Have you listened to Peruvian music? Can you make a Japanese origami crane? Would you like to get a henna tattoo?
Heartstoppers Haunted House Frightening Ghosts and Ghouls You will be scared out of your wits for a good cause this October as the Heartstoppers Haunted House returns to the former Mine Shaft venue
PCWA Encourages Rapid Watershed ProtectionIn wake of the King Fire, the Placer County Water Agency is encouraging expanded and rapid remediation of heavily burned National Forest Lands to protect water quality of the Rubicon River watershed before winter storms.
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy at Thunder Valley on New Year's EveGuests will have the chance to purchase tickets to Thunder Valley Casino Resort's much anticipated $100k Big Easy New Year's Eve Celebration Main Event- as tickets go on sale Saturday, October 18 for Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.
Ebola Virus: Oral and Facial Surgeons AdvisoryThe California Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons (CALAOMS) has issued an advisory to all oral and facial surgeons in California that provides important guidance on Ebola virus