You’ve committed to visiting the farmers markets to purchase local, responsibly produced food whenever possible; switched to organic skincare products; and clean your home with environmentally-friendly cleaning supplies… So why not take a natural approach with your health, too?
Naturopathy is a smart, holistic movement that treats healthcare as collaboratively as possible and is based on a fusion of modern research and traditional medicines. We chatted with Dr. Natalie Waller, B.Kin., ND., regarding why we’d want to see a naturopath and how we should go about finding one in Vancouver.
We learned from Dr. Waller that naturopathic doctors (NDs) have a similar education background as general family practitioners (GPs), but also study holistic and nontoxic approaches to therapy with a strong emphasis on disease prevention and optimizing wellness. NDs start with three years undergraduate pre-med sciences, followed by a four-year clinical program. And to ensure that NDs are up-to-date with the latest naturopathy information and technology, they have to obtain continuing education credits every two years.
Naturopaths treat all medical conditions and can provide both individual and family health care. Instead of offering a prescription for a drug to suppress a specific symptom, Dr. Waller shared that NDs will look at the individual as a whole (nutrition, exercise, stress management, sleep patterns) and not just what the specific symptom is and its treatment. They work to find the root of the cause and eliminate it.
You don’t require a doctor’s referral to see a naturopathic doctor, so it’s up to you to do the research. Ask friends and colleagues if they can recommend an ND, or visit the BC Naturopathic Association or Canadian Association of Naturopathic Doctors for a list of local NDs.
When looking for a naturopath, Dr. Waller advises that “fit and comfort are most important.” You need an individual you will enjoy working with, have open communication with, and trust. When meeting a potential ND for the first time, don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions.
Here are five highly-recommended – and in some cases “Best of” award-winning – Vancouver-area Naturopathic Clinics that you may want to check-out:
Elements Wellness Centre & Studio, 207-2678 West Broadway, Vancouver
Integrative Healing Arts, 730–1285 W. Broadway, Vancouver
Sage Clinic, 487 Davie Street, Vancouver
Ray Clinic, #3-201 Morrissey Road, Port Moody
West Vancouver Wellness Centre, #103-565 17th Street, West Vancouver
Do you have a go-to Naturopathic Clinic in Vancouver? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @ViewTheVibe.