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Naturopathic Treatments - your insights into what is what...


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I am not sure where to begin with this thread. Over the past few years my interest has increased in nutritional healing along with avoidance of medications and other traditional 'medical model' treatments for health conditions. I furthermore believe in preventative measures in pursuit of health, as opposed to masking or treating symptoms.

I will admit that my lifestyle habits are not perfect and that my knowledge of this area is limited. Also that I am very passionate about learning more and more each day, and sharing information with others.

This thread could be about the chiropractic and accupuncture treatments I attend weekly or the juicer I just bought, which is hard to clean but worth the trouble. It could also be about what supplements one is taking or the new recipe just tried (try mixing OJ, basil, mint and spinach in a blender - my new favourite drink :D).

What I really want to know today, is...

1) who is your naturopathic doctor?

2) Do you use ionic foot baths? Would you buy your own?

3) Has anyone tried the new QXCI Biofeedback for assessment and/or treatment purposes?


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hey, so I couldnt resist a shameless plug, but I am just finishing my degree in naturopathic medicine and I thought I'd post a few links you might find helpful.

For listings of ND's in your area you can visit the CAND Canadian Association of Naturopathic Doctors - Welcome! or the OAND OAND - Ontario Association of Naturopathic Doctors.

Also, for discounted rates the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine has an onsite clinic (RSNC) at Leslie/Sheppard. The school site is: CCNM | Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine and the RSNC Clinic website is: Robert Schad Naturopathic Clinic (Teaching Clinic) | Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine.

The rates are reduced because you will be treated by student interns who are all supervised by licenced ND's.

As far as the ionic foot bath goes, there is no scientific evidence (read: clinical trials, publications in peer reviewed journals) to support it.

Not too familiar with biofeedback.

I would be totally willing to discuss or answer questions.

Hope this helps.
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Thanks for the links... my boyfriend is going to be seeking out a naturopathic doctor in Toronto following a diagnosis of hypertension (I am currently in London).

I attended a presentation for an ionic foot bath today and the water turned all sorts of colours. Made for good drama but between that and the QXCI Biofeedback I was feeling very sceptical. They said you can test and diagnose imbalances in the body, i.e. saliva pH, analyze vitamins and minerals, tests adrenals, food and environment allergies, do a cellular evaluation, etc. etc. all by hooking you up to some machine. I was aware naturopathic doctors can test for food sensitivities but to this extent?

As for 'the bill' it sounds riveting so far.


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I suggest you research these treatments... naturopathy is a catch-all term to describe a bewildering variety of modalities. Some might be valid but the vast majority--in my experience--are pseudoscientific scams that will perform no better than placebo (at best) and will certainly swindle you out of considerable sums of money if you go full throttle.

I suggest you peruse some of the following resources... you are free to disagree but you should at least know the parameters of the debate about many CAM practices.

Acupuncture: acupuncture - The Skeptic's Dictionary - Skepdic.com
Chiropractic: chiropractic - The Skeptic's Dictionary - Skepdic.com
QXCI biofeedback: Some Notes on the Quantum Xrroid (QXCI) and William C. Nelson Local News | How one man's invention is part of a growing worldwide scam that snares the desperately ill | Seattle Times Newspaper
Ionic foot baths/aqua detox: The Aqua Detox Scam Ionic Foot Baths - Might as well flush your money down the john... - As Seen on TV - America's Worst Buys - The Blog - WhosPlayin.com

The situation in naturopathy is essentially this: some practitioners likely do a fine job with nutrition and diet advice, application of herbs, etc. but the real money is in these quack treatments involving "quantum" something or nonsensical detox regimes. Some commonly accepted modalities such as acupuncture turn out to perform no better than placebo--which means there is an effect, but the entire philosophy on which it is based has not shown to be anything other than bunk.

I hope we don't need to go over homeopathy at any point.

Subsonic Chronic

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Over the past few years my interest has increased in nutritional healing along with avoidance of medications and other traditional 'medical model' treatments for health conditions.
You know, not all things mainstream are bad and evil, and you'll want to be careful about so quickly dismissing traditional Western medicine for unproven treatments like ionic footbaths, colonic irrigation, and whatever else is being pushed by certain 'naturopaths' these days. Heck, even chiropractors have been known to push ridiculously expensive, marginally effective treatments to clients who don't know any better.

Obviously there are areas where mainstream medicine can be improved, but when you go see an MD you're getting someone who's spent a certain number of years in school and has had to meet certain criteria in order to practice. Most procedures that you receive have been clinically tested and are backed by years, if not decades of evidence. You've also got laws that apply to what they do, colleges that oversee their work and a means of following up if you feel you've been wronged in some way. Basically, you can expect some measure of quality control.

Things are at least coming along in this respect when it comes to naturopaths, but right now there's plenty of scammers out there who are waiting for people like you to hand over buckets of cash for the latest fad treatment just because it's 'natural' or 'alternative'.


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Good points Pete.

People need to realize that just because something is natural doesn't mean it's good for you.


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I go see an ND in Missisauga named Derek Murphy.

I feel really good when I leave there. Is it the Bowen? Probably not, but I get a lot of quality advice from him regarding career, family, general health.

He has helped reduce my allergies, and some of my lung issues. Hasnt helped my sleep at all.

The CPAP Machine has hepled even less though. Cost insurance 1300 bucks, plus 760 from the Government.

Went to the Osteopath last week. He told me he couldn't help me, and sent me away. I appreciate the honesty.

The Dr. Joe Show on CFRB is really entertaining for insights into ionic footbaths and the like. His book called Science, sense, and nonsense was good also
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A good naturopath will recognize and acknowledge that in some cases a "western" medical treatment is called for. Any medical practitioner should be looking out for the best interests of their patient, and should treat them with the optimal (balancing efficacy with possibility of side effects) approach...whatever it is, rather than strictly practising one form of treatment.

If you'd like a referral to a naturopath who I feel meets these criteria, please PM.


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but the water changes colour! That's pure toxins coming out of my body! Please take all my money.

Now off the buy lottery tickets and Ginko Balboa.


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It appears I may have given the impression I have discounted western medicine, which is most certainly not true. Perhaps it is better to state that I am interested in exploring alternate methods and asking the question, why the absence of health, as opposed to being reactive and focusing on symptom treatments.

One of my favourite books currently, for this area, is "Prescription for Nutritional Healing', Phyllis Balch. It offers general insight into an array of topics pertaining to drug-free remedies.

Interestingly, the book makes no reference to ionic foot baths and QXCI Biofeedback, which were the main focus of the seminar I attended yesterday. Frustrating as the information was presented in a manner in which it was masquerading as truth. I still haven't located any empirical (read: science) data to back up those two 'treatments'.

I must agree that one should be cautious about what is 'natural' vs 'artificial' and am pleased that many of you are thinking so critically. This is what I was looking for in this post...... :D


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Erin Truscott Brock is my Naturopathic doctor. She does not overstep her boundaries and referrers on when she has exhausted her resources.

To many ND in my opinion will try to keep you for a long as possible with voodoo shit. Its difficult for them as they are trying to practice their craft (witch) but still run a successful business (making money) at the same time and this can lead to poor advise as they need to keep you as a client so they can pay their rent. The same can be said for chiropractors, physio's, massage and osteo's.
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^^^ That there is pure awesome.

Meta-analysis in a graphical format for the most-talked about supplements. Great find.


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LOVE the chart!!!!

Update: determined the woman presenting in naturopath seminar the other day is NOT registered. This is why she is able to promote her new 'methods'.
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As a naturopath (note I didnt use quotations because we are actual doctors) I fully endorse allopathic medine and most definitly think there is a place for both forms of medicine. The ultimate goal, in my opinion, should truely be what is of most benefit for the patient. I am a firm believer in conjunctive care.

I am in full agreement with regards to the importance of registration. I would not under any circumstances recommend anyone seek out any health care practitioner who isnt registered by their governing body. As far as I was aware, in order to call yourself an ND or a naturopath in Ontario one had to be licenced. That being said, I have seen unregistered "naturALpaths".

While I practice with much more of an emphasis on orthomolecular interventions, I would under no circumstances discount the benefits and power of botanical, chiropractic, TCM, and yes, even homeopathic medicines. Admittedly, I am on the fence about homeopathy, but I have seen it work. I am also unwilling to argue with 5000 years of homeopathy as a form of medicine in other parts of the world. To each his own.

For the record, and for your interest or information, ND's are required to have a 4 year undergraduate degree before qualifying for the 4 year naturopathic medical education we garner from accreditied educational institutions regularily monitered for quality. We are also required to undergo rigourous licencing examinations both for NPLEX (NABNE) and provincial board exams for the province you wish to practice. These licencing examinations are on par with the USMLE Step exams issued to medical students in the US. I would also like to point out here, that in addition to similar medical curriculums, naturoapthic students are also required to be appropriately educated in all the alternative fields in which we practice. This equates to 50+ hours of class a week for the first three years followed by a year of residency/internship where we are required to have 1032 hours of clinical experience before even being eligiable to sit boards. I would also like to point out a pass in this program is 70% or higher. So, no, we aren't quacks, and what we do isnt quackery. We aren't just any old scammer trying to take you for all your money. It refelcts very poorly on the profession that these kinds of "dr's" are out there.

In Ontario, the province is working to establish a body similar to the College of Physicians and Surgeons. As ND's we want this and agree that the need for such an organization is dire.

As with any choices you make regarding healthcare, etc, education is absolutly key. If you arent sure about an ND, or a product or a "fad" or the ionic footbath for example, do research. Reputable sources are important.

I agree that the cost of naturopathic care is expensive, rediculous in some cases. I am unsure of how I feel about this. I absolutly feel that natural healthcare should be available to all and in this way I am all for OHIP coverage of what we do. I also believe firmly in the value of volunteering my time at clinics where the service is provided free of charge and are run mainly on donation. That being said, paying out of pocket for healthcare garners an immense committment to the treatments we recommend and compliance is very high. Patients compliant with treatments prescribed get better. This is fact.

I dont mean to rant/vent, but I am insulted when people downgrade the effectiveness and validity of what we do. If you dont believe in what we do, dont see an ND, but dont insult something simply because you dont understand it.


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As a naturopath (note I didnt use quotations because we are actual doctors)

Ummm no sorry dear, you're not an "actual doctor". That's like saying a PHD is an "actual doctor" or chiropractor is an "actual doctor"

Naturopathic medical is available to all. You just have to pay for it and some insurance companies will cover a portion.

As noted above I use a ND for some stuff but more to supplement the work of my actual doctors.

I'm skeptical as shit really doesn't work for "me" and its not properly regulated IMO - yes you go to school and have a college Naturopathic medicine if I'm not mistaken but telling me to take some shit pills and do stupid assessments made in China that has no real literature to back it up makes no sense to me.

I have yet to have a ND provide me with substantial research articles that validate their Dx and subsequent Tx uses.

ND validation is usually "it works for clients of mine"

I really don't mean to rain on your post but to think ND are anywhere near to actual MD's is a bit short sighted. I can appreciate you sticking up for your craft, I have to stick up for mine all the time but come on.......OHIP funding for ND should and never will happen. See what happened to Chiro'?


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another recommendation for sugar's ND, she is terrific.

i see an ND in Kitchener who has helped me immensly (sp?) with my crohns, energy levels, back problems, the list goes on. i still regularly see my MD. they both know about each other, and they both support each other... i am very lucky that my MD is not one to push medication at all (unless it's really needed) and supports trying to treat problems without prescription meds.

what you need to find in an ND is someone who takes your whole health history in account, and someone you are comfortable with. there are many, many, many benefits of using an ND.

it's actually really cool to see how an ND can test you for allergies and vitamin deficiencies.

i do think those foot baths are crap though, but that's my opinion.


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I would under no circumstances discount the benefits and power of botanical, chiropractic, TCM, and yes, even homeopathic medicines. Admittedly, I am on the fence about homeopathy, but I have seen it work. I am also unwilling to argue with 5000 years of homeopathy as a form of medicine in other parts of the world. To each his own.
All that training and you're still on the fence about hocus pocus like homeopathy? Some doctor you are.
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