Naturopathic medicine week is this week, October 9th-15th, and I figured it was time to share why I became a naturopathic physician. My life transformed when I learned about naturopathic medicine at the age of 15 and to my mom, I will always be grateful.
From Disease to Wellness
Doctors prescribed me frequent antibiotics and gave me multiple sets of vaccinations beyond the norm as a child. I was always sick with something. My legs ached every night. My sinuses were congested. I had acne and I had a mouth full of amalgams by age 10. Every time I ran outside for my PE class, I would get wheezy and I thought that was normal. I was so toxic and didn’t know it. In fact, I had no idea what it meant to feel healthy until my mom found me a naturopathic doctor. My naturopathic doctor taught me about yeast, stress, and about my food sensitivities to cow milk and sugar. I changed my diet and took a couple of supplements to support my body’s detox process. I became a little more aware of healthy habits. A few weeks later, my skin improved, my leg pains resolved and I could think more clearly. I could actually breathe and was no longer wheezy when I ran. I was ecstatic for I finally felt better and had hope for a healthier future.
Medicine of the Future: Naturopathic Medicine
I was so blessed that a naturopathic physician entered my life at age 15. From that point forward, a seed had been planted in my heart and mind…I had to become a physician. And not any physician but a naturopathic physician who would truly heal patients. I started reading and studying the Baha’i Writings on health and healing. I came across Writings from Abdu’l-Baha about the medicine of the future. For example, I read statements such as “Treat disease through diet, by preference, refraining from the use of drugs; and if you find what is required in a single herb, do not resort to a compounded medicament” and “At whatever time highly-skilled physicians shall have developed the healing of illnesses by means of foods, and shall make provision for simple foods, and shall prohibit humankind from living as slaves to their lustful appetites, it is certain that the incidence of chronic and diversified illnesses will abate, and the general health of all mankind will be much improved. This is destined to come about”; finally, “When the science of medicine reaches perfection, treatment will be given by foods, aliments, fragrant fruits and vegetables, and by various waters, hot and cold in temperature.”
These were power statements about the future of medicine. I recognized that naturopathic medicine exemplified just what the Baha’i Writings talked about…..Naturopathic physicians diagnosed and treated disease with nutrition, herbs, hot/cold therapy, leaving prescription drugs and surgery as a final resource. So I thought to myself…it is possible that Naturopathic medicine will be the medicine of the future and I must be part of that transformative future.
Finding My Path
By the time I graduated from high school, I realized that my mission was to be a hollow reed through which healing passed on to the patient. For the first 15 years of my life, I had been led down the path of disease …but suddenly, my path had changed… I had been led towards wellness and health. I figured if I could have hope so could others. If I had the blessing of being given hope and healing, I had the obligation to give others hope and help them heal. I also had a strong yearning to follow certain deeply-engraved principles I had been taught growing up: 1) investigate the truth independently 2) harmonize science and spirituality, and 3) create unity.
Putting it all together, I found my only path in life: to become a licensed naturopathic physician to assist in the precious journey of healing individuals. Combining science and spirituality, integrating the arts with medicine, investigating the truth in healing by finding the root cause of disease, creating unity within and amongst people by treating the whole, and truly healing others became my passion. I was determined. I was on a mission to transform myself, and help transform others…and I am still on that mission, continuing to practice my passion 33 years later… I am so so grateful…