Naturopathy is an approach to health care which aims to promote, restore, and maintain long-term good health. It is a complement to allopathic, or modern, medicine, not a replacement. The two can work very well in tandem. The primary focus with naturopathy is to provide the least invasive, most efficient, non-toxic therapies that go to the root of illness, not just the suppression of symptoms. Hippocrates believed in viewing the whole person to look for a cause of disease, and using the laws of nature to induce cure, and it was from this that modern naturopathy evolved.
Revolutionary progress in modern medicine means that over the past 50 years we have seen, to name but a few, the introduction of: antibiotics, cortisone, open-heart surgery, the polio vaccine, The Pill, IVF, organ transplants, triple therapy for AIDS… However, allopathic medicine is very much focussed on managing or eradicating symptoms, and not finding and treating the root cause. There is a tendency to see the body in parts, and not as a whole. Given the right tools, the body is pretty effective at healing itself.
Naturopathy literally means ‘natural cure’. By using a combination of healthy diet, simple self-help techniques, for example, breathing and relaxation exercises, beneficial herbs and general exercise, naturopathy seeks to promote the body’s own ability to heal itself. The focus is on underlying causes, rather than the symptoms. The ultimate aim is homeostasis, or the maintenance of balance.
Just under 20 years ago I visited an endocrinologist because I was suffering terrible palpitations. He did some blood tests and, seeing that my thyroid, iron levels, etc were normal, prescribed beta blockers. He seemed extremely taken aback when I wanted to know the cause of the palpitations, instead of just accepting his ‘bandaid’. The beta blockers worked well, but I was concerned that it seemed as though I might be beta blockered for life; there had to be a reason – my heart hadn’t just made a unilateral decision to ‘rave’ 24/7.
After some research, and a visit to a naturopathic doctor, it turned out I was very deficient in magnesium. This also explained the terrible muscle and joint pain I had been having. It sometimes really is that simple. I happily replaced my beta blockers, muscle relaxants and ibuprofen with magnesium-rich food, and a good magnesium supplement and haven’t looked back.
From birth to eight months, my son, Léo, slept in stretches of about an hour, when he would wake up screaming. The local doctor said he was ‘capricious’, and was doing his best ironing board impression at hourly intervals throughout the night for fun. After numerous pitiful attempts, I eventually found a wonderfully understanding pediatrician, with a forensic attention to detail and a sympathetic ear, who immediately diagnosed silent reflux. She prescribed the necessary medication, as well as changes to his eating and sleeping arrangements. That night my ‘capricious’ baby slept for 12 hours straight.
The other doctors had missed this diagnosis because it was ‘silent’ (he wasn’t vomiting or even regurgitating). I returned to see the local doctor because I thought she might be interested to hear the conclusion, perhaps for other patients. She flat-out refused to believe he had silent reflux on the basis that if you can’t see it, touch it, or test it, it doesn’t exist. She had made her helpful diagnosis of ‘capricious’ and she was sticking to it.
We still visit the doctor from time-to-time and I am eternally grateful for many aspects of modern medicine. We are mostly vaccinated, and take things like antibiotics or cortisone when necessary. But there is a time and place for everything, and these two experiences turned out to be salutary: I learnt that in order to stay healthy, I had to advocate, sometimes forcefully, for my family’s health.
I am a ‘Natural Health Consultant and Educator’ (diplomas from the AMCC), and offer consultations to help you balance your body’s natural defenses so it can heal itself.
If you would like to book a consultation (a questionnaire to complete followed by a telephone or video consultation, and then my written recommendations), please contact me by email: firstname.lastname@example.org. I consult in English and French.
First consultation: questionnaire plus telephone or video consultation, usually lasting 1hr, recommendations by email. 80€
I also offer a shorter ‘trial’ consultation: questionnaire plus shorter (20 minute) telephone or video consultation, recommendations by email. 35€
Follow-up consultations and recommendations by email. 35€