I have start this post with a disclaimer: I am not a doctor (yet). Please do not take any of the medical and health advice I may talk about on this blog seriously without seeking the advice of a health professional. What I share on this blog is just my personal interpretation of what I am learning while studying naturopathic medicine (NM) and should not be taken as solid fact.
Alright, now on to some interesting tidbits from today about NM...
Allopathic medicine is typically about treating a disease, whereas NM is about treating a person. NDs examine the person in whole, taking into consideration their emotional, mental, and physical well-being. NDs care about how people feel and not just the lab results. For example: if your thyroid hormone levels are normal (according to the lab result) but you still feel fatigued, an ND will still consider you to be unwell and will work to find the root cause of your ailment until you feel optimal.
When in doubt, allopathic doctors (aka MDs) prescribe their patients antibiotics (drugs, drugs, drugs!). I learned today that the naturopathic equivalent is fish oil and probiotics. My personal naturopathic doctor (ND) once told me that all of his patients walk out of this office with this very prescription. I guess every field of medicine has their own "go to" remedy!
Other random and interesting things I learned today...
- The symptoms experienced when sick (e.g. fever, headache, mucous, chills) are not caused by the virus/bacteria, but are caused by your own body. Feeling these symptoms is a good thing because it meats that your immune system is working hard to battle the invader. People too often take medicine to relieve them of these yucky feelings, but you need them in order to fight off the invader!
- When people get sick, they usually feel sick for 5 days or so because it takes 5 days to the adaptive immune system to grow strong enough to actually kill off the infection.
- It is important that children get sick when they are sick because the only way to build up the immune system is to "teach it" how to fight invaders.
- Babies are not born with the ability to make antibodies (these help the body recognize foreign cells), so the only way babies get antibodies is through their Mother's milk (breast feeding is SO important to the development of infants... more to come on this!).
- The HIV virus doesn't actually hurt your body. It just destroys your immune system. Without an immune system, something as simple as a cold virus can kill you.