AN ALTERNATIVE AND COMPLEMENTARY MEDICINE RESOURCE GUIDE
From the Alternative Medicine Foundation, Inc
Naturopathic medicine is a distinct healthcare profession that combines natural, non-toxic therapies with current advances in health and medicine. Naturopathic physicians are primary care physicians clinically trained in a wide variety of natural therapeutics, adapted to each patient, with a focus on preventive and whole patient care. Therapies used by naturopathic physicians include:
Counseling and Stress Management
Public Health Measures and Hygiene
Depending on his/her interests and skills, a naturopathic physician may focus on just a few of these areas. Naturopathic physicians cooperate with all other branches of medical science, referring patients to other practitioners for treatment or diagnosis when appropriate.
[Back to Contents]
Principles of Naturopathic Medicine
The naturopathic physician's approach to health and wellness is guided by the following philosophy and principles of practice:
The Healing Power of Nature: Naturopathic medicine recognizes an inherent self-healing process in each person that is ordered and intelligent. Naturopathic physicians act to identify and remove obstacles to healing and recovery, and to facilitate and augment this inherent self-healing process.
Identifying and Treating the Causes: The naturopathic physician seeks to identify and remove the underlying causes of illness, rather that to merely eliminate or suppress symptoms.
First, Do No Harm: To avoid harming the patient, naturopathic physicians follow three precepts:
- Utilize methods and medical substances that minimize the risk of harmful side effects, using the least force necessary to diagnose and treat.
- Avoid, when possible, the harmful suppression of symptoms.
- Acknowledge, respect, and work with the individual's self-healing process.
Doctor as Teacher: Naturopathic physicians educate their patients and encourage self-responsibility for health. They also recognize and employ the therapeutic potential of the doctor-patient relationship.
Treating the Whole Person: Naturopathic physicians treat each patient by taking into account individual physical, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social and other factors. Since total health includes spiritual health, naturopathic physicians may encourage individuals to pursue their personal spiritual development.
Prevention: Emphasizing the prevention of disease, naturopathic physicians assess a patient's risk factors, heredity, and susceptibility to disease, and make appropriate interventions in partnership with their patients to help prevent illness.
[Back to Contents]
Education, Clinical Training and Licensing
Naturopathic doctors receive their training at four-year, graduate level naturopathic medical schools with admissions requirements comparable to those of other medical schools. The Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree (N.D.) is awarded after the completion of classroom, clinic and practical study.
The basic sciences component of naturopathic medical education includes: anatomy, biochemistry, cardiology, clinical & physical diagnosis, dermatology, gynecology, immunology, lab diagnostics, microbiology, minor surgery, neurology, obstetrics, pathology, pediatrics, pharmacology, physiology, and radiology. Throughout the four years, there is also training in naturopathic therapeutics, including botanical medicine, therapeutic nutrition, counseling, homeopathy, natural childbirth, hydrotherapy, physical medicine and other therapies.
Naturopathic physicians can perform physical examinations, gynecological exams, nutritional and dietary assessments, and order laboratory testing, metabolic analysis, allergy testing, X-ray examinations, and other diagnostic tests. Naturopathic physicians are trained to combine and adapt western science-based concepts to treatments that use individual based, non-toxic, natural therapies. As a result, they are able to distinguish when a referral to another branch of medical science for diagnosis and/or treatment is appropriate. In addition to their training in western medical approaches, naturopathic physicians achieve an expertise in botanical medicine, homeopathy, nutrition, and other naturopathic therapeutics.
Naturopathic doctors do not prescribe pharmaceutical medications. Although in some licensed states, there is a limited scope of practice for small amount of selected prescriptive medicines. Naturopathic doctors do not perform surgery. Although in some licensed states there is a limited scope of minor surgical procedures allowed (for example, removal of a wart or repair of ingrown toenail.)
The practice of medicine in the United States is regulated by each state. Currently, 12 states (and Puerto Rico) have licensing laws for naturopathic doctors: Alaska, Arizona, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, Oregon, Utah, Vermont, and Washington. Each state defines the scope of practice for licensed naturopathic physicians. The following requirements must be met to attain a license in the states that offer them:
- Graduation from an accredited four year, residential naturopathic medical school
- Passage of extensive postdoctoral board examinations (e.g., NPLEX)
- Fulfillment of state mandated continuing education requirements
In many unlicensed states, supporters of naturopathic medicine have introduced bills and are actively working toward achieving licensure.
[Back to Contents]
The methods and therapies used in naturopathic medicine have been the subject of scientific research in peer-reviewed journals from many disciplines, including naturopathic medicine, conventional medicine, European complementary medicine, clinical nutrition, Oriental medicine, phytotherapy (herbal medicine), pharmacognosy, homeopathy, psychology and others. Naturopathic physician researchers serve on the Research and Advisory Board of the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
Research in naturopathic therapies is also being conducted at research institutes affiliated with naturopathic medical colleges. Information about the current research and lists of publications at Bastyr University Research Institute can be found at http://www.bastyr.edu/library. Bastyr's library can be reached at http://library.bastyr.edu.
Information about research at Southwest College can be found at http://www.scnm.edu/research.
The National College of Naturopathic Medicine (NCNM) has a satellite Natural Health Sciences Research Clinic at 545 First Street, Lake Oswego, OR 97034 (503)-636-6600. Information about research at NCNM can be found at http://www.ncnm.edu/academics-at-ncnm/research.php . The Helfgott Research Institute (www.Helfgott.org) was established in June of 2003 at the National College of Natural Medicine.
The future of naturopathic medicine research is being directed by the collaborative work entitled the Naturopathic Medical Research Agenda (NMRA). http://www.bastyr.edu/research/NMRA/default.asp?jump=1
As described in the NMRA Executive Summary:
Hypotheses and Extent of Research To date
1. The Naturopathic Medical Research Agenda (NMRA) is based on a series of hypotheses that respect the historical tradition of naturopathic medicine and the observations of current naturopathic scholars and physicians about its health advantages. These hypotheses are:
- That the wide spread implementation of naturopathic medicine in primary care will be both safe and effective
- That the wide spread implementation of naturopathic medicine in primary care will improve public health outcomes including cost-effectiveness
- That the scientific exploration of naturopathic medical principles and practice will yield important scientific insights
2. A model mapping the types of naturopathic medical research was developed that identified three major domains:
- Whole practice research, with a focus on research on naturopathic medicine as practiced in the community
- Content research, with a focus on components of naturopathic medicine (e.g., botanical medicine)
- Context research, with a focus on observations about the practice of naturopathic medicine
3. The majority of research to date on naturopathic medicine was in the domain of content research. Currently, little research has been done in the domains of context research and whole practice research.
It is predicted that the process of creating such an agenda will facilitate and inform the future of naturopathic research.
[Back to Contents]
NOTE: The following resource listings are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to be used as a guide for treatment. They are provided for information only. The resources are selected and categorized to help you with your own research.
Some of these books have been authored by licensed naturopathic doctors. Other books are not but relate to the field of naturopathic medicine. In general, there are many books related to naturopathic medicine, and this list is clearly not exhaustive or all inclusive.
Some of the books listed below can also be found in a list created by the American Medical Student Association's Naturopathic Medicine's Interest Group http://www.amsa.org/naturopath/index.cfm.
General Naturopathic Medicine
||Joseph E Pizzorno, N.D., and Michael T Murray, N.D.
The Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine, 2nd edition, revised
Prima Publishing, 1997
A comprehensive, user friendly guide to more than 70 medical conditions.
||Joseph E Pizzorno, N.D., and Michael T Murray, N.D
The Textbook of Natural Medicine
Originally published by Churchill Livingstone, 1999
Text/reference with approximately 10,000 citations to peer-reviewed literature providing standards of practice for natural medicine. Covers history and the conceptual basis of natural medicine, diagnostic procedures, common modalities, issues relevant to disease, and specific diseases. For clinicians.
||Tori Hudson, N.D.
Women's Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine
Women's Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine covers in depth the whole range of women's health concerns including menstrual difficulties, menopause, endometriosis, osteoporosis and others and explains how integrated medicine can be used to treat these conditions.
||J. Pizzorno, ND, M. Murray, ND, H. Joiner-Bey, ND
The Clinician's Handbook of Natural Medicine, 2nd Edition
Churchhill Livingston, 2002
This in-depth guide provides clear and rational directives on diagnosing and treating specific diseases and disorders with natural medicine. This book has summaries of diagnostic procedures, general considerations, therapeutic considerations, and therapeutic approaches for 84 of the most commonly seen conditions.
||Eric Yarnell, ND
Publisher not known, 2000
This text contains information on aspects of the treatment of disease and problems of gastrointestinal homeostasis.
||Lise N. Alschuler, N.D., Karolyn A. Gazella,
Alternative Medicine Magazine's Definitive Guide to Cancer: An Integrative Approach to Prevention, Treatment, and Healing
(Alternative Medicine Guides, 2007)
This comprehensive guide to cancer has discussions of 20 specific cancers, including detailed descriptions of integrative treatments. The authors also review key body functions including immunity, inflammation, hormonal influences, insulin resistance, digestion, detoxification and elimination.
||W. Lininger Schuyler, D.C.; Alan R. Gaby, M.D.; Steve Austin, N.D; Don Brown, N.D.; Jonathan Wright; M.D. and Alice Duncan D.C., C.C.H.
The Natural Pharmacy rev. ed.
Prima Publishing, 1999
This book covers clinically proven natural treatments for most common medical conditions.
||Marc Micozzi, M.D., Ph.D (Ed.)
Fundamentals of Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Churchhill Livingston, 2001
This introductory textbook contains the historical background of alternative therapies and health systems. It focuses on treatments supported by clinical trials, explains the development of key ideas and approaches, and includes new appendices.
My Water-Cure (New Edition)
Standard Publications Inc, 2007, original published 1956
The author presents his water-cure, tested for more than 35 years and published for the cure of diseases and the preservation of health.
||Dr. Henry Lindlahr, M.D.
(The Nature Cure Publishing Company, 1922)
This book is a reprint of the classic early guide to holistic medicine. Dr. Lindlahr was the founder of American Naturopathy and introduced the United States to the German Nature Cure movement.
||Friedhelm Kirchfeld and Wade Boyle
Nature Doctors: Pioneers in Naturopathic Medicine
Medicina Biologica, 1994
This book details prominent Nature Doctors from the European nature cure movement and those who brought the movement to the Americas, like Priessnitz, Grafenberg, Fathere Kneipp, Rikli; Felke, and Dr. Schweniger, Benedict and Louisa Lust, Henry Lindlahr, Thomson and Lief, Otis G. Carroll, Dr. Koegler and Dr. Boucher, and finally John Bastyr, the father of modern naturopathic medicine.
||Wade Boyle, ND and Andre Saine, ND
Lectures in Naturopathic Hydrotherapy
Buckeye Naturopathic Press, 1988
This book is the essential reference for naturopathic hydrotherapy written by 2 pioneering naturopathic physicians, Wade Boyle and Andre Saine. The techniques are based on Dr. O. G. Carroll's constitutional hydrotherapy treatments and adhere to the basic principles & philosophy of hydrotherapy.
||Henry Lindlahr, M.D
Philosophy or Natural Therapeutics - Henry Lindlahr
Standard Publications Inc, 2007; Original 1919
This book is rich with classic naturopathic philosophy and treatment guides serving as foundation for modern naturopathic medicine.
||Sharol Tilgner, N.D.
Herbal Medicine from the Heart of the Earth
Wise Acres, 1999
This text includes 170 herb profiles, herbal preparations, formula arranged by body system. Tilgner has compiled the information from traditional herbal teachers, the current model of naturopathic health care and current research from respected scientists.
||William Mitchell, N.D.
Plant Medicine in Practice: Using the Teachings of John Bastyr
Churchill Livingston Publishing, 2003
This book is derived from the teachings of the eclectic naturopathic physician, John Bastyr. Contains practical advice and insight drawn from Dr. Bastyr's notes, lectures, and writings, as well as the author's own clinical experiments with plants during 25 years of practice.
The Book of Herbal Wisdom: Using Plants as Medicines
North Atlantic Books, 1997
Matthew Wood, practicing herbalist and homeopath, blends Western Herbalism, North American Indian shamanistic botany, Homeopathy, and Traditional Chinese Medicine. This book contains both practical knowledge of medicinal plant usage and insight on how medicinal plants may bestow their wisdom and healing on those that use them. In slightly under 500 pages, Wood provides an extensive and eclectic description of 41 herbs, their indications, uses and fascinating points about their history.
||Joerg Gruenwald, Thomas Brendler, and Christof Jaenicke
PDR for Herbal Medicines, 4th ed. (Physician's Desk Reference (Pdr) for Herbal Medicines)
DMedical Economics, 2000
Includes full-color identification guide, drug interactions guide, and herbal monographs on 700 botanical substances.
Feeding the Whole Family: Recipes for Babies,Young Children and Their Parents 3rd Edition
MoonSmile Press, 1997
This book focused on an easy-to-prepare, sustainable, whole foods diet for the entire family. The third edition of Feeding the Whole Family adds chapters on balancing meals, planning shopping trips, drinks for kids, and over 60 new recipes to this edition. Over 180 recipes overall.
||Russell Marz, N.D.
Medical Nutrition from Marz
Quiet Lion Press, 1997
This comprehensive textbook details clinical nutrition from both a nutrient focus, as well as many medical conditions.
||Michael Murray, N.D. and Joseph Pizzorno, N.D., and Lara Pizzorno
The Condensed Encyclopedia of Healing Foods
Drs. Murray and Pizzorno provide historical tidbits and discoveries from the laboratory along with tips on selecting, storing, and preparing all kinds of healthful foods, as well as recipes.
The Soul of Remedies
Homeopathic Medical Publishers, 1997
This book contains detailed descriptions of homeopathic remedies, along with important comparisons to other remedies.
||Timothy Dooley, ND, MD
Homeopathy Beyond Flat Earth Medicine, Second Edition
Timing Publications, 2002
Dr. Dooley intersperses stories from his twenty years of training and experience as he explains what homeopathy is, how it differs, when to use it, what to expect, how to get results, and what is needed for success in treatment.
[Back to Contents]
Specific to Naturopathic Medicine
Journal of Naturopathic Medicine
Official publication of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP). Currently in re-development, and will be available at end of 2008.
International Journal of Naturopathic Medicine
Peer reviewed online journal.
Dedicated to providing accurate, authoritative information for the advancement of naturopathic medicine. Alex Vasquez, ND, DC Editor. 12 printed issues per year, also extensive information online.
Naturopathic Doctor News and Review
Naturopathic Doctor News & Review is a professional news and information resource for naturopathic physicians in North America.
American Family Physician
Official publication of the American Academy of Family Physicians
An informative article from the Journal of Family Practice describes a naturopathic visit and the role NDs play in our health care system. “Naturopathic Medicine: What can Patients Expect?” volume 54, number 12, December 2005
Alternative Medicine Review
Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine
Complementary Therapies in Medicine
An international, peer-reviewed journal that aims to publish valid, relevant and rigorous research and serious discussion articles with the main purpose of improving healthcare.
Integrative Medicine: A Clinician’s Journal
Launched as a peer-reviewed journal in 2002, Integrative Medicine: A Clinician’s Journal (IMCJ) provides practitioners with a practical and comprehensive approach to integrating alternative therapies with conventional medicine. The journal is published 6 times per year under the leadership of Joseph Pizzorno, ND, Editor in Chief, a co-founder and former president of Bastyr University.
Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine
Research on Paradigm, Practice, and Policy
Townsend Letter, the Examiner of Alternative Medicine
Townsend Letter, the Examiner of Alternative Medicine, publishes a print magazine about alternative medicine. It is written by researchers, health practitioners and patients. As a forum for the entire alternative medicine community, they present scientific information (pro and con) on a wide variety of alternative medicine topics.
Exploring conscious healing at the heart of medicine
Published quarterly by Unified Health Press.
Unified Energetics is a complimentary trade journal publication for clinicians and it covers a broad spectrum of topics, with a regular editorial emphasis on the clinical significance of whole food nutrition and the influence of spirituality and consciousness on healing.
[Back to Contents]
American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP)
4435 Wisconsin Avenue, NW Suite 403
Washington, DC 20016
Toll free: (866)-538-2267
Phone: (202) 237-8150
Fax: (202) 237-8152
The professional organization for licensed naturopathic physicians. Contact the organization for referrals, licensing, and extensive information about naturopathy. Contact information for the AANP’s state affiliate associations are also listed for about 37 states at
Council on Naturopathic Medical Education
Council on Naturopathic Medical Education
P.O. Box 178
Great Barrington, MA 01230
Founded in 1978, CNME is accepted as the programmatic accrediting agency for naturopathic medical education by the four-year naturopathic colleges and programs in the United States and Canada, by the American and Canadian national naturopathic professional associations, and by NABNE. CNME advocates for high standards in naturopathic education, and its grant of accreditation to a program indicates prospective students and the public may have confidence in the educational quality of the program. The U.S. Secretary of Education recognizes CNME as the national accrediting agency for programs leading to the Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine (N.D. or N.M.D.) or Doctor of Naturopathy (N.D.) degree.
North American Board of Naturopathic Examiners (NABNE)
Suite 119, #321, 9220 SW Barbur Boulevard
Portland, OR 97219-5434
NABNE administers the NPLEX (Naturopathic Physicians Licensing Examinations) to candidates who have met examination requirements. NABNE is an examining board only, not a credentialing or licensing board. Students and graduates of programs accredited or pre-accredited (candidacy) by CNME are eligible to apply for examinations administered by NABNE.
[Back to Contents]
NATUROPATHIC MEDICAL SCHOOLS
The following schools are accredited by the CNME (Council on Naturopathic Medical Education):
14500 Juanita Drive NE
Kenmore, WA 98028-4966
Phone: (425) 823-1300
Fax: (425) 823-6222
Practitioner Referral Line: (voicemail) (425) 602-3390
Clinic: (206) 834-4100
Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine
1255 Sheppard Avenue East
Toronto, Ontario M2K 1E2
Phone: (416) 498-1255
Toll Free: 1-866-241-2266
Clinic: (416) 498-9763
College of Naturopathic Medicine- University of Bridgeport
60 Lafayette Street
Bridgeport, CT 06601
Phone: (203) 576-4108
Toll Free: 1-800-EXCEL UB ext. 4108
Fax: (203) 576-4941
National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM)
049 SW Porter
Portland, OR 97201
Two Clinics: 503-552-1551 and 503-552-1552
Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine and Health Sciences
2140 East Broadway Road
Tempe, AZ 85282
Phone: (480) 858-9100
Fax: (480) 858-9116
Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
[Back to Contents]
Promotional and commercial sites are not included in this listing unless they provide significant impartial information resources.
HealthWorldOnline - Naturopathy
Contains information on naturopathy under several categories, including therapeutic modalities in naturopathic medicine, naturopathic approach to specific health concerns, naturopathic medicine schools, and naturopathic resource center.
Naturopathic Medicine Network
Site includes a section for professional naturopaths, and several sections for consumers, including a a "Yellow Pages" of naturopaths graduated from accredited 4-year programs.
Informative site from a professional naturopath, Suzanne Lawton, ND
The Integrator Blog
News, reports, opinion, and networking for the business, education, policy and practice of Integrative Medicine, CAM, and Integrated Health Care. John Weeks, Publisher/Editor
List of Conferences for Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Maintained by Townsend Letter
Maintained by Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine
[Back to Contents]