Glossary of Naturopathic Terms
At the Naturopathic Institute of Therapies and Education (NITE), we believe in educating anyone who is willing in the ways of holistic healing and natural health. Learning about the techniques, remedies and practices involved with naturopathy is what so many students come to us each year to do. Time and time again, we encounter inquiring minds that want to know how naturopathic study can help improve their lives. We know that the students, alumni and faculty at NITE share our vision of making the world a happier, healthier place and that we must begin that journey with a sound education.
Expanding your knowledge base of naturopathy and natural healing often begins by asking a few simple questions: What is naturopathy? How can I become a naturopath? What is the difference between a Naturopathic Doctor and a Naturopathic Physician? At NITE we strive to make learning about naturopathy simple, enjoyable and fulfilling. The easiest way to begin expanding your knowledge is by learning the basics of the terminology we use to describe what we do. Look over our glossary of naturopathic terms and if you want to know more about NITE, you can request information here.
Naturopathy – This term refers to the practice of using all natural, non-invasive forms of prevention and treatment to gain optimal health using therapeutic methods and substances that encourage individuals’ inherent self-healing. It is a process of treating disease that employs no surgery or synthetic drugs. Naturopathy relies on naturally occurring substances to help combat the detrimental side effects of living in an increasingly unnatural world. Exercise, vitamins, meditation, relaxation, herbs and even the sun itself are often the best ways to overcome both sudden and chronic illnesses alike.
Naturopath – This term simply refers to a practitioner of naturopathy. Naturopaths dedicate themselves to studying all forms of holistic and natural healing and preparing themselves to meet the needs of their patients. Any practitioner of naturopathy is a Naturopath, but there are also Naturopathic Physicians and Doctors. When considering a school, you should consider the length of time in operation, the success of their graduates and approval from the State or an Accreditation Board. The ANMCB Board suggests you visit the American Naturopathic Medical Accreditation Board for schools that have been granted Accreditation. The Board (ANMCB) knows these Accredited programs will gain the knowledge needed to pass the certification examination. At NITE, our fourth year students take the national exam from the American Naturopathic Medical Accreditation Board, and that organization grants the credential of ND or Board Certified Naturopathic Doctor.
Doula – This is a person who assists in the miracle of natural childbirth by providing physical assistance and emotional support both in the home and hospital setting. Unlike midwives who assist in delivering newborns, the Doula focuses on supporting the mother through pregnancy, birth and early infancy phases.
Holistic – This describes the practice of viewing the human body’s internal systems and their properties as a whole, rather than a collection of parts. Holistic naturopathic healers understand that you must consider the entire human form when considering treatment for an ailment, even if it only affects part of the patient.
Learning the terms is a great first step, but it will take more in order to start making a difference as a naturopathic professional. Success will be achieved by learning which of the multiple therapies taught is best blended for the individual client. Extremely high standards are held for passing final exams, ensuring that all graduates of the institute have truly earned their diplomas. Graduates experience tremendous personal growth, learn the art of compassion, and are then able to provide hope for the great number of people who will seek them out because of their balanced approach to physical, emotional and spiritual wellness.