roots date back thousands of years drawing from the healing wisdom of
many cultures. The modern practice of Naturopathy has its roots in the
European Nature Cure movement of the 19th century. In America,
Naturopathy is over 100 years old. Dr. Benedict Lust is known as the
father of Naturopathy in America, he came from Germany to practice
hydrotherapy taught to him by Father Sebastian Kneipp. The first school
in America was founded in New York in 1902. Naturopathy experienced a
decline in the 1940's with the rise in pharmaceutical medicine. There
has been a resurgence in the medicine as we begin to look for
alternatives that have been there all along! Naturopathy focuses on
individualized care where the patient plays a central role.
Principles of Naturopathic Medicine
The Healing Power of Nature - Vis Medicatrix Naturae - The
body has an innate ability to heal. The Naturopaths role is
to facilitate the healing process helping the patient to achieve
balance, remove obstacles, and create a healthy internal
and external environment.
Identify and Treat the Cause - tolle causam -
Symptoms are the expression of the bodies attempts to heal and are
not typically the cause of the disease. The Naturopath seeks the
underlying cause of disease by examining physical, emotional, mental,
and spiritual levels.
First do no Harm - primum no nocere - The
Naturopath will pay attention to the ways in which treatments are
affecting the body. Remedies used to suppress symptoms without
addressing the underlying cause are considered harmful.
Treat the Whole Person - in perturbato animo sicut in corpore sanitas esse non potest - The
health of a person involves many aspects; including social,
environmental, genetic, physical, mental, and emotional to name a
few. Naturopaths take a personalized and comprehensive approach to
Doctor as Teacher - Docere -
The Naturopaths responsibility is to educate the patient on their
health and to assist the patient in taking responsibility for their own
health. The Naturopath helps the patient become empowered to
make changes that are in accordance to a healthy balanced lifestyle.
Prevention - principiis obsta: sero medicina curatur -
The emphasis is on building health instead of fighting disease. The
Naturopath teaches a healthy lifestyle and habits while assessing risk
factors and hereditary susceptibility to disease by giving
recommendations for prevention.