Natural Medicine

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naturopathicWhat Is Natural Medicine?

Natural Medicine is a distinctively natural approach to health and healing that recognizes the integrity of the whole person. Natural Medicine is heir to the vitalistic tradition of medicine in the Western world, emphasizing the treatment of disease through the stimulation, enhancement, and support of the inherent healing capacity of the person.

Methods of treatments are chosen to work with the patient’s vital force, respecting the intelligence of the natural healing process. The practice of Natural Medicine emerges from six underlying principles of healing. These principles are based on the objective observation of the nature of health and disease, and are continually re-examined in light of scientific analysis. It is these principles that distinguish the profession from other medical approaches:

The healing power of nature.

The body has the inherent ability to establish, maintain, and restore health. The healing process is ordered and intelligent; nature heals through the response of the life force. The healthcare practitioner’s role is to facilitate and augment this process, to act to identify and remove obstacles to health and recovery, and to support the creation of a healthy internal and external environment.

Identify and treat the cause.

Illness does not occur without cause. Underlying causes of disease must be discovered and removed or treated before a person can recover completely from illness. Symptoms are expressions of the body’s attempt to heal, but are not the cause of disease. Symptoms, therefore, should not be suppressed by treatment. Causes may occur on many levels including physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. The healthcare practitioner must evaluate fundamental underlying causes on all levels, directing treatment at root causes rather than at symptomatic expression.

First do no harm.

Illness is a purposeful process of the organism. The process of healing includes the generation of symptoms which are, in fact, an expression of the life force attempting to heal itself. Therapeutic actions should be complimentary to and synergistic with this healing process. Therefore, methods designed to suppress symptoms without removing underlying causes are considered harmful and are avoided or minimized.

Treat the whole person.

Health and disease are conditions of the whole organism, a whole involving a complex interaction of physical, spiritual, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social, and other factors. The healthcare practitioner must treat the whole person by taking all of these factors into account. The harmonious functioning of all aspects of the individual is essential to recovery from and prevention of disease, and requires a personalized and comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment.

The Healthcare Practitioner as teacher.

Beyond an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment, the healthcare practitioner must work to create a healthy, sensitive interpersonal relationship with the patient. A cooperative practitioner- relationship has inherent therapeutic value. The practitioner’s major role is to educate and encourage the patient to take responsibility for their own health. The practitioner is a catalyst for healthful change, empowering and motivating the patient to assume responsibility. It is the patient, not the practitioner, who ultimately creates/accomplishes healing. The practitioner must strive to inspire hope, as well as, understanding. The practitioner must also make a commitment to his/her personal and spiritual development in order to be a good teacher.


The ultimate goal of any health care system should be prevention. This is accomplished through education and promotion of life-habits that create good health. The practitioner assesses risk factors and hereditary susceptibility to disease and makes appropriate interventions to avoid further harm and risk to the patient. The emphasis is on building health rather than on fighting disease.


Natural Medicine philosophy serves as the basis for holistic practice. The current scope of Natural Medicine practice includes, but is not limited to:

Clinical Nutrition

Good nutrition is the best medicine and is a cornerstone of holistic practice. Many medical conditions can be treated more effectively with foods and nutritional supplements than they can by other means, with fewer complications and side effects. Natural Medicine practitioners use dietetics, natural hygiene, fasting, and nutritional supplementation in practice.

Botanical Medicine

Many plant substances are powerful medicines. Where single chemically-derived drugs may only address a single problem, botanical medicines are able to address a variety of problems simultaneously. Their organic nature makes botanicals compatible with the body’s own chemistry; hence, they can be gently effective with few toxic side effects.

Homeopathic Medicine

Homeopathic medicine is based on the principle of “like cures like.” It works on a subtle yet powerful electromagnetic level, gently acting to strengthen the body’s healing and immune response.

Physical Medicine

Natural Medicine has its own methods of therapeutic manipulation of muscles, bones, and spine. Doctors of Natural Medicine also use exercise, massage, water, heat and cold, air, and gentle electrical pulses.

Psychological Medicine

Mental attitudes and emotional states may influence, or even cause, physical illness. Counseling, nutritional balancing, stress management, biofeedback, and other therapies are used to help patients heal on the psychological level.