What is Naturopathic Consulting?
A Naturopathic Consultant is a health practitioner who incorporates a variety of natural approaches to promote and facilitate health and well-being in all areas of a person’s life: body, mind, and spirit. Such approaches are generally safe, non-invasive, and designed to promote the long term health and wellness of the client. They typically act as an adjunct therapy to treatments offered by conventional medicine, although historically they have often been the primary therapy available. A person should expect a synergy between each of their health care providers and a Naturopathic Consultant works to that end.
The various approaches offered by Naturopathic Consultants can be quite varied in approach and application. There are two broad categories: active, which includes such things as diet/nutrition, bodywork, exercise, and supplementation, and passive, which includes such things as rest, meditation, and relaxation. Normally, a client will be directed to engage in a number of these methods in order to get maximum benefit.
There are also two primary areas of focus in naturopathy: one is to support the body’s own innate ability to be healthy. This is accomplished by assessing what the client may need to take into their bodies for health and wellness and to determine if there is currently something that might need to be eliminated from the diet to engender health. A second area of focus is to encourage people to make changes to their lifestyle that may move them more quickly along the road to health.
There are a number of fundamental philosophies that govern how I work at Abbott Wellness Solutions. These philosophies are typical of any Naturopathic Consultant you might choose to deal with:
1. First and foremost – do no harm. Look for the safest, least invasive, but most effective therapy for the client you are dealing with. This includes recognizing that each person is unique and treatments need to be approached as such.
2. The body has the natural ability to heal itself.
3. Identify the cause of the concern rather than simply treat the presenting symptoms. This is perhaps the defining difference in approach between naturopathic and conventional medicine.
4. Treat the whole person as an integrated entity of body, mind, and spirit.
5. Education is an important and critical part of the healing process. When a person understands why something is happening there is a better chance that they will be compliant to requests made.
6. Prevention of disease is the best approach to take.
What does a Naturopathic Consultant do: Each Naturopathic Consultant that you see will have a number of complementary treatment options they use. No Naturopathic Consultant will use all of these treatment options but it will give you a sense of what might be available when you visit.
Examples of such treatments include:
Nutritional counseling – this would include discussion about foods that may be challenging for you to eat, encouraging the eating of certain foods to restore balance and health, ensuring that you are following certain basic nutritional guidelines for health, and suggesting a supplementation regimen that may help your specific situation.
Physical or bodywork approaches – this might include a number of “hands-on” therapies that promote healing, Chiropractic, massage, Bowen Therapy, Cranial sacral therapy, and many others are examples of this approach.
They might also utilize hot and cold compress therapy, laser work, electric current, or sound waves to effect change.
Herbal medicine – the use of herbs for therapeutic uses as been around as long as we have had written records. Many of today’s pharmaceutical drugs had their roots in herbal beginnings. A naturopathic consultant might use herbs as a safer alternative to more toxic pharmaceutical drugs.
Homeopathic medicine – although not well-received by conventional medicine, homeopathy remains an effective healing approach as many people have attested.