Naturopathic doctors use natural therapies to support the healing process, prevent disease, and optimize the patient’s health, energy and well-
The main types of naturopathic therapies used by Dr. Sepúlveda to treat his patients include:
The purpose of naturopathic counseling is to educate patients about lifestyle changes that help reduce health risks (such as those associated with a deficient diet, sedentary life, high levels of stress, toxic exposures, etc.). These lifestyle changes may be part of a prevention program, or an integral part of a recommended treatment for a specific health condition. In addition to this, as part of a holistic approach, naturopathic counseling helps the patient to identify situations, attitudes and emotions that may be causing or contributing to a particular health condition. It is important to note that the counseling offered by naturopathic doctors is not a substitute for the treatment provided by mental health professionals (such as psychiatrists and psychologists), or counseling provided by other professionals (such a marriage counselors).
Dietary Changes & Therapeutic Nutrition
All living beings turn into what they eat. For this reason, a good nutrition is the most important foundation both for disease prevention and for disease treatment (including conditions such as cardiovascular disease and many cancers). Naturopathic medicine emphasizes educating patients so that they can choose foods and food preparation methods that promote good health.
Phytotherapy (Medicinal Plants)
Medicinal plants have been used for thousands of years for the treatment of many health conditions, and constitute one of the pillars of naturopathic medicine. In fact, many pharmaceutical medications are derived from chemical substances extracted from plants. It is extremely important to have studied and to understand medicinal plants at a deep level because, contrary to popular belief, not all medicinal plants are safe and free of toxicity. A significant number of medicinal plants can cause damaging side effects, especially when they are used concurrently with pharmaceutical medications.
The word “orthomolecular” is derived from the Greek “ortho” which means “correct”, and from “molecule” which, after the atom, is the most fundamental component of all beings. In other words, the objective of orthomolecular medicine is to prevent and treat diseases by providing the patient with optimum (“correct”) quantities of natural substances (“molecules”) that are necessary to sustain life and to reach the state of metabolic balance that we commonly call health. Orthomolecular medicine makes use of nutritional supplements, including vitamins, minerals, diverse types of antioxidants, essential fats, amino acids, enzymes, probiotics, and other natural substances that are a normal part of our biochemistry and physiology.
Preventive and Therapeutic Exercise
Together with diet, exercise is another pillar of good health (especially aerobic exercise). Exercise is fundamental, both for the prevention of many diseases (including diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, some cancers, and possibly Alzheimer’s) and for the treatment of many.
Environmental Medicine and Detoxification (“Detox”)
We all know that our environment is being loaded with toxic substances every day. Every day we get exposed to those toxins through the air we breathe, through the fluids and foods we ingest, and through contact with our skin. Those toxins include heavy metals (like lead and mercury), plastic by-
Hormones are chemical messengers that our bodies produce, which have very profound and widespread effects. Hormone treatment is not a panacea, and it is important to consider its benefits versus its potential risks. Unfortunately, there are some practitioners that recommend them to treat an absurd number of health conditions for which there is no reliable scientific evidence of significant benefit and safety (the best example of this is the use of progesterone). This exposes patients to potential side effects that may be detrimental to their health, and causes an unnecessary expenditure of money. For some health conditions (such as menopausal hot flashes, which can be effectively treated with hormones) there are other treatments that are much cheaper and very safe (such as medicinal herbs). For these reasons, hormonal treatment should be used very selectively for the treatment of very specific health conditions.
Physical medicine treatments are commonly used to treat musculoskeletal problems (like muscle or joint pain). However, they can be used to treat other health conditions such as anxiety and digestive system problems, among others. Therapeutic massage, muscle stretching and hydrotherapy are some examples of physical medicine treatments.
Modern science has clearly demonstrated the strong connection between the human mind and health. Our emotions, attitudes and beliefs, either conscious or subconscious, exert a strong influence over the functioning of the human body. This influence is so significant that modern clinical studies used to evaluate the effect of pharmaceutical medications or natural substances must take this into account (called the placebo effect) to make sure that the measured positive effect was caused by the substance being studied and not by the mind. In recent times we have also seen the emergence of new areas of research, such as psychoneuroimmunology, which studies the effect of the mind over the immune system. Mind-
Aromatherapy is the use aromatic essential oils from plants for treating a diverse number of health conditions. Its practice is based on the fact that our sense of smell has a strong connection with our subconscious mind and our emotional states. Considering in turn the strong connection between emotional states, the subconscious mind and the functioning of the human body, we understand the way that aromatherapy can be used not only to benefit the mental state of patients, but to benefit their physical condition as well.
The roots of energy medicine are thousands of years old. Its practice assumes the existence of transpersonal healing mechanisms based on energy transfer from one human being to another in ways that our current scientific knowledge can not explain. These therapies are looked at with total skepticism by conventional medicine. However, recent scientific studies have begun to demonstrate what practitioners of these therapies know by experience: that energy medicine therapies have significant effects over our mind and body.
For information on coverage of naturopathic medicine by some health insurance plans, please call (787) 607-