Principles of Naturopathic Medicine
The Healing Power of Nature (Vis Medicatrix Naturae)
Naturopathic Medicine acknowledges and respects the intelligence of nature in the healing process. The Naturopathic Doctor, then, works to support this creative action by removing obstacles from its path, emphasizing healthy internal and external environments, and stimulating the body's own healing wisdom.
Identify and Treat the Causes (Tolle Causam)
Recurrent symptoms are interpreted as expressions of the body's attempt to heal itself. As such, they are traced back to a cause or an underlying imbalance in the individual. The Naturopathic Doctor aims to understand and address the cause of symptoms and is not happy to simply suppress them.
First Do No Harm (Primum Non Nocere)
To avoid harming the patient, Naturopathic Physicians strive to intervene as little as possible in the diagnosis and treatment of illness. They like to use gentle methods and substances in restoring health. They avoid the suppression of symptoms since this most often interferes with the healing process and, of course, they work with rather than against the self-organizing momentum of living systems.
Doctor As Teacher (Docere)
Education is integral to the individual's path of healthy being and becoming. The Naturopathic Physician likes patients/clients to assume responsibility for their own health. They work to increase awareness of environmental (food, air, water), psychological and other forces that influence well-being.
Treat the Whole Person
Naturopathy recognizes that all aspects of being affect our health. Our wellness is the symphonic effect of mental, emotional, environmental, genetic, social, physical and other forces. In this context of wholeness, Naturopathic Physicians encourage individuals to pursue their personal and spiritual development. The unique patterns that mould each individual play a significant role in diagnostic and treatment programs.
Naturopathic Medicine studies health as well as illness. Besides treating illness then, Naturopathy aims to maintain states of well-being and so prevent the onset of illness. They assess risk factors, heredity and susceptibility to disease in order to design, together with the individual, programs for prevention. Naturopathic Doctors understand that we cannot be healthy in an unhealthy environment.