What is Naturopathic Medicine?

Naturopathy Philadelphia Cancer

By Georgia Tetlow, MD and Jill Maddock, PIM Office Manager

At Philadelphia Integrative Medicine, we combine the best of conventional and evidence-based alternative medicine to give you the tools to be well. The world of alternative or holistic medicine is vast. One area we especially value and respect is Naturopathy or Naturopathic Medicine; like all forms of holistic medicine, Naturopathic Medicine utilizes therapeutic methods and substances to support optimal health and emphasize our body’s inherent ability to self-heal. Join us on 4/4 for an exploration in the most recent research: The Latest in Mind-Body Science.

A Naturopath uses scientific, traditional, empirical and modern methods. These methods include diagnostic testing, physical medicine, homeopathy, IV therapy, prescription and botanical medicine, hygiene, minor surgery, nutrition, etc.

The foundational principles of a naturopathic practice:

  • Treat the whole person- a Naturopathic physician takes into account the individual environmental, physical, emotional, mental, genetic, social, lifestyle and sometimes spiritual factors to encourage total health.

  • The healing power of nature- physicians identify and act to remove obstacles that may inhibit the patients’ natural ability to recover and heal.

  • Identify and treat the cause- The underlying cause of an ailment is identified and reduced or removed rather than just the symptom.

  • Prevention- Assessment of genetics, risk factors and susceptibility to illness and disease is emphasized and treated through appropriate interventions in collaboration with the patient.

  • Doctors as Teachers - Physicians encourage self-responsibility of their patients through education and doctor-patient relationship.

  • Do no harm - Physicians avoid harming the patients by three general rules: avoid harmful suppression of symptoms, recognize and work with the patients’ individual self-healing process, and utilize substances or methods that decrease the risk of side effects.

Unfortunately for both providers and patients, Pennsylvania does not recognize Naturopaths as a health care providers. Despite four years of medical school and residency, it is illegal for a board certified Naturopath to touch a patient in PA. We at Philadelphia Integrative Medicine recognize the extensive training and value of Naturopathy and appreciate the opinions and expertise of our local and national colleagues. We especially recognize the work of our local colleagues to support those undergoing active cancer treatment. If you or a loved one is undergoing active cancer care, consider reaching out us for contact information for a local and recommended Naturopathic physician.

PIM wants to hear from you! Do you have an experience with Naturopathic Medicine? Did you find this article helpful? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!

Interested in connecting with PIM? Register for one of our upcoming events - FREE Group Classes at Cabrini College (please RSVP online) OR Nutrition Classes with our very own Rachel Hershberger, MS, CNS, LDN, tickets just $45 at sign up (limited to 8 participants for individual attention, no walkins, please).

If you or your loved one has ongoing stress, mood or hormone imbalance, or they are suffering from a chronic illness, please consider scheduling a 20 minute free consultation or an appointment with Lauren Houser, MS, MSN, CRNP or Annmarie McManus, MMSc, PA-C, PT, IFMCP.