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2011 is lucky 13 for Naturopathic Medicine Week

This year marks the 13th year that Naturopathic Medicine Week (NMW) has been proclaimed in Canada.

This is a national annual awareness initiative to teach members of the community about naturopathic medicine, health promotion and disease prevention.

Over the course of the week naturopathic doctors across Canada will be providing open house clinic hours as well as public workshops and lectures on topics such as the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. This is to educate the public on the benefits of naturopathic treatment. A complete listing of events is posted on www.cand.ca and on www.bcna.ca

Naturopathic physicians (ND’s) are primary health care providers with seven to eight years of post secondary education who practice safe, effective, science-based natural health care.

Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary health care system that blends modern scientific knowledge with traditional and natural forms of medicine.

ND’s diagnose, treat and prevent disease using natural therapies including botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, naturopathic manipulation, traditional Chinese medicine/acupuncture and lifestyle counselling.

The big accomplishment for myself and our profession in B.C. was that 180 ND’s received limited prescribing rights in September 2010. This allows ND’s to prescribe medicines that have been taken away from them over the years, i.e. tryptophan and amino acids. The training also provides evidence-based statistics to help patients manage their prescriptions.

Across Canada there are over 1,600 registered ND’s and in B.C. there are 376 practicing ND’s. This is a far cry from the 40 of us that were practicing in B.C. in 1985 with myself being one of three women at that time. Now half of the 376 ND’s are women!

There are two schools in Canada: Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine (Toronto) and Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine (Vancouver). The Canadian Association of Naturopathic Doctors (CAND) is recognized as a stakeholder with the federal government and is a participant in consultations on scientific panels and expert advisory committees. Legislation for naturopathic physicians exists in five provinces, B.C., Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and Ontario. Lobbying for regulation is underway in all remaining provinces and the Northwest Territories, with Alberta legislation pending very soon.

The word doctor comes from the latin “docere” which means to teach.

ND’s take the time to educate their patients on the cause and treatment of their ailments in order for them to take a more proactive part in their health care.

It is also the role of the ND, as educator, to sift the wheat from the chaff when the media paint a negative view of natural therapies. Many ND’s, myself included, write articles and offer educational websites to continue this educational process after the visit ends.

Naturopathic medicine week is to help educate the public about the extensive expertise of naturopathic physicians in their role as coach in helping people achieve optimal health and preventing chronic disease.

Naturopathic medicine is for those who are ready to look at the underlying cause of disease and change their lifestyle.

This means getting out of their comfort zone and regular eating habits and trying new things.

I welcome you to my office for Tasting Day/Open House on May 9 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. I  will be providing tastes of various foods and recipes from my website that I find people are reluctant to try.

Now is your chance to come in for a taste. Carmen, my technician, will also be offering free candida testing from 10 a.m. to noon.

Are you ready for a change in your health? Try naturopathic medicine.

Dr. Ingrid Pincott, naturopathic physician, has been practicing since 1985 and can be reached at 250-286-3655 or www.DrPincott.com

 

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