Naturopathic Medicine and Parkinson's Disease · Parkinson's Resource Organization

Naturopathic Medicine and Parkinson's Disease

Category: Newsletter

Parkinson’s Disease (PD) is the second most common neurogenerative disorder experienced by seniors; voluntary movement is impaired or lost. Although the dis-ease may come to affect the whole body, it most commonly weakens one’s ability to control semi-voluntary motions such as swinging arms when walking or moving one’s tongue so that speech is clear and precise. 

Naturopathic Doctors are America’s best-kept secret! – Naturopathic medicine is well-suited for treating and preventing Parkinson’s disease. Naturopathic Doctors (ND) are the only primary care doctors in the United States trained in both conventional and natural medicine. Naturopathic education thus bridges two worlds that the public often sees as being very distinct: science-informed medicine and natural healing methods. ND training gives naturopathic doctors many tools to deliver the best of both these worlds.

Naturopathic Medicine is a unique and distinct system of health care that emphasizes prevention and natural therapeutics. Naturopathic doctors (NDs) are trained to serve as primary care general doctors who are experts in the prevention, diagnosis, management, and treatment of both acute and chronic health conditions.

Licensed naturopathic doctors complete a four-year, doctoral level, medical education at an accredited school, recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. Naturopathic doctors spend two years studying the same biomedical sciences as medical doctors as well as advanced training in botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, behavioral medicine, exercise therapeutics, and homeopathy. Only naturopathic medical students who graduate from an accredited program are eligible to take the Naturopathic Licensing Examination, required for licensure. 

Some of the Causes of Parkinson’s disease – One of the six principles of Naturopathic Medicine is to find and treat the causes of dis-ease. Some of the potential Parkinson’s causes include pesticides and herbicides; toxic metals, such as lead; poor nutrition; hidden and delayed food allergies, such as gluten; traumatic brain injuries; inflammatory brain disorder, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction (the last three known to be caused by environmental toxicants). According to Dauer (2003), only 5-10% of PD cases are linked to genetics.

Naturopathic Medicine 101 – In my practice, the first medical appointment includes extensive blood testing. Using optimal, rather than standard ranges to objectively evaluate symptoms and their concrete reality, a program that enhances the fundamental building blocks of health will then be developed. This often includes exercise, healthy nutrition, quality sleep, managing stress, proper hydration, and mental and emotional health. I prescribe lifestyle change and natural medicine to treat the causes of health issues. 

In addition to treating the cause, the other five principles of Naturopathic Medicine are: (1) Do No Harm; (2) The Healing Power of Nature; (3) Treat the Whole Person; (4) Preventive Medicine, and; (5) Doctor as Teacher. 

Naturopathic treatments are effective in treating a wide variety of conditions without the need for additional intervention. Naturopathic doctors can also function within an integrated framework, and naturopathic therapies can be used to complement treatments used by conventionally trained medical doctors. The result is a patient-centered approach that strives to provide the most appropriate individualized treatment. 

Naturopathic doctors have been at the forefront of the evolution of integrative and functional medicine. The Federal Department of Education recognizes eight Naturopathic medical schools, and 26 U.S. jurisdictions license Naturopathic Physicians. 

Over the past two decades, there has been a paradigm shift in attitudes, further understanding and acceptance of natural medicine. Naturopathic institutions are frequently recipients of National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding and other grants to advance medical research, and often awarded highly competitive NIH fellowships. 

Naturopathic medicine is safe, effective and evidence based. As with most medical conditions, Parkinson’s can be immensely helped by healthy lifestyle, natural medicine, and removing the obstacles to cure. 

Dr. Dennis Godby, ND, MA; CNDA California Naturopathic Doctor of the Year, 2012; Board of Director for California Naturopathic Doctors Association; Serving Sacramento Region Since 2005 - 17th anniversary year; Sacramento’s longest serving Naturopathic Doctor is now a member of the Wellness Village. PRO is so excited to welcome him to the Wellness Village and to present him to you through our programs.

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Updated: August 16, 2017