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Naturopathic Medicine

Have you heard about naturopathic medicine? This branch of medicine incorporates the traditional Eastern approach to healing by treating disease through the stimulation and enhancement of an inflicted person's inherent healing capacity. Naturopathic healing promotes the body's natural capacity to recover, and does not use chemically derived drug treatments or invasive surgery. The field of naturopathic medicine is a relatively new development in the Western world—though it has been used by Eastern cultures with success for thousands of years.

The principles of naturopathic medicine are different from modern medical practices. A naturopathic physician identifies and treats the cause of disease by supporting the creation of a healthy environment for the patient and removing obstacles to health and recovery. Naturopathic medicine treats the whole person, rather than the disease itself. This includes every aspect of a person's environment: physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, and social factors are taken into account when a treatment program is developed. The naturopathic physician's role is more that of a teacher; he or she shows the patient how to best heal and maintain himself. Finally, naturopathic medicine concentrates first on prevention, and attempts to avoid the need to treat disease altogether.

There are many aspects involved in naturopathic medicine. Clinical nutrition is the cornerstone of the practice; as many conditions can be treated most effectively with diet controls and nutritional supplements. Botanical medicine is another component of naturopathic practice, as is physical therapy and homeopathic cures such as magnet therapy. Finally, naturopathic doctors can and do perform minor cosmetic surgery such as cyst removal and repair of superficial wounds.

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