The Value of Naturopathic Care part 1

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Is naturopathic care worth the money spent on it?

By Bob Bernhardt, PhD

September 19, 2017

Naturopathic doctors may at times receive this question from their patients. It is nice to know that there is an evidence-based response that says “Yes!”

Rising health care costs have been a fact for some time. Evidence is now emerging that adding or enhancing adjunctive care services can serve to reduce overall costs. Much of the evidence relates to treating chronic conditions that can be major cost drivers within health care. This article highlights the findings from four randomized clinical trials conducted in partnership with a major Canadian corporation and a major union, and examines public polling data suggesting that the savings identified can be anticipated in other settings.

The genesis of the four corporate clinical trials was a joint (union/management) health and wellness committee created to improve the health of union members within the corporation. Although it was understood that improved employee health could relate to cost savings, this was not the initial focus.

The studies examined:

  • cardiovascular health as measured by the risk of a cardiovascular event
  • chronic back pain
  • rotator cuff tendonitis
  • anxiety

The largest, and most recent of these studies, was multi-centered (Toronto, Edmonton and Vancouver) and focused on the reduction of the risk of a cardiovascular event (myocardial infarction, stroke, etc.) among volunteer union employees whose physical examinations revealed significant risk. Over 1,100 study candidates were screened; 246 were admitted to the study and randomized to one of two groups. Members of the control group were encouraged to continue to see their standard medical providers as deemed appropriate for managing their condition. Members of the active treatment group were also encouraged to continue to see their standard medical providers, but in addition they received naturopathic care consisting of some combination of lifestyle counselling, nutritional counselling, and dietary supplementation. The study showed that the group receiving naturopathic care experienced a significant risk reduction for cardiovascular events, as well as a reduction in the frequency of metabolic syndrome. The results of this study were published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.1

A companion economic study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine determined that the significant reduction in cardiovascular risk resulted in a net study year savings of $1,187 to the employer, and an additional $1,138 for society(all figures in Canadian dollars).2

The chronic back pain study involved workers aged 18 to 65 with a clinical diagnosis of low back pain of at least six months duration. Both the active treatment group and the control groups had bi-weekly meetings with a healthcare provider. The control group received standard physiotherapy advice, while the active treatment group received naturopathic care consisting of exercise and dietary advice, relaxation training, and acupuncture. The study found that those receiving naturopathic treatment reported significantly lower back pain (P<0.0001) as measured by the Oswestry questionnaire. Quality-of-life was also significantly improved in the group receiving naturopathic care in all domains except for vitality. All secondary outcomes were also significantly improved in the group receiving naturopathic care: spinal flexion (P<0.0001), weight-loss (P=0.0052) and Body Mass Index (P= 0.01). The paper was published in the Public Library of Science One online journal.3

According to a companion economics study, researchers concluded that the impact of naturopathic care would “significantly reduce societal costs by $1,212 per participant.”4

The additional studies and the data on patient behavior will be presented in the next blog post.

For more information on the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine, visit http://www.ccnm.edu/



  1. Seely et al. Naturopathic medicine for the prevention of cardiovascular disease: a randomized clinical trial. CMAJ. 2013 Jun 11;185(9):E409-16. Epub 2013 Apr 29.
  2. [Herman PM, Szczurko O, Cooley K, Seely D. A Naturopathic Approach to the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease. J Occup Environ. 2014 Feb; 56(2):171-6.]
  3. Szczurko O, Cooley K, Busse J, et al. Naturopathic Care for Chronic Low Back Pain: A Randomized Trial. PLoS ONE. 2007 2(9): e919.
  4. Herman P, Szczurko O, Cooley K, Mills E. Cost-Effectiveness of Naturopathic Care for Chronic Low Back Pain. Altern Ther Health. 2008 Mar-Apr; 14(2):32-9


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Your Teeth and Your Health

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What Is Homeopathy?

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What is homeopathy?

For over 200 years, homoeopathy has been recognised as a safe, gentle, effective, but most of all rational system of medicine. At a time when the use of aggressive and highly toxic compounds as medicines was based on unsubstantiated theories, Samuel Hahnemann instituted a system of therapeutics at the end of the 18th century, founded on close observation of the effects of small amounts of medicinal substances on healthy people. Today, the system Hahnemann founded is bringing health benefits to millions around the world, including the British Royal Family.

Homeopathy works by assisting the body’s own powers of self-healing, rather than brushing them aside or overriding them, as conventional medical treatments often do. Though not necessarily implying therapeutic superiority (timely conventional medical intervention is often vital in accident and emergency situations), homeopathy has often proved invaluable in the treatment of chronic illnesses, where the best efforts of conventional medicine have failed. Consequently, homeopathy and conventional medicine should be seen as complementary, ideally each fully available to patients and health practitioners as part of a spectrum of therapeutic possibilities.

Homoeopaths use a holistic approach to health which means that as well as noting a patient’s physical symptoms, their mental and emotional states may be considered just as important in ascertaining the underlying nature of the disease (often written and pronounced as ‘dis-ease’).
From this perspective, viruses and bacteria may not be the only causative disease factors – they are opportunistic organisms that take advantage of the body’s lowered immune system and defences. Similarly, fevers, skin eruptions, vomiting, or headaches are not the disease either – they represent the body’s attempts at re-establishing harmony, which in so doing gives rise to these symptoms. Thus, the goal of homeopathy is to support the patient’s immune system while assisting it in its attempts to restore balance.

This is reflected in homeopathy’s principles, some of which hark back to an earlier and more ancient appreciation of health and dis-ease. Samuel Hahnemann, the discoverer (some think, the re-discoverer) of homeopathy towards the end of the 18th Century, used Hippocrates’ Principle of Similars, referred to as ‘like cures like’. In other words, a remedy produces in a healthy person, the same symptoms as those from which a sick person might suffer.

For example, someone suffering with a hot, dry, delirious fever might be treated with a dose of belladonna which produces precisely these symptoms in a healthy person. But, in order to avoid the toxic effects of the drug and any concomitant aggravations or ‘side-effects’ that might arise from them, the remedy is usually diluted (in some cases, out of all molecular existence), and then strongly agitated. This process, which homoeopaths call potentisation, far from weakening the remedy, is thought to increase its curative powers, while reducing any aggravation of the patient’s condition.

1.   Homotoxicology & Physiological Regulating Medicine

Homotoxicology, or anti-homotoxic medicine, is a mid-20th century ‘upgrade’ of homeopathy formulated by Dr Hans-Heinrich Reckeweg. Increased stress, sedentary life-styles, processed foods, over-use of pharmaceuticals (e.g., antibiotics), lack of exercise, and environmental pollutants (e.g., dental mercury) all make modern life more toxic than in Hahnemann’s day. Reckeweg combined homeopathic principles with conventional bio-medicine, developing the notion of the body as a holistic cellular ‘ecosystem’.

Here, disease symptoms are considered the outward manifestations of the body’s difficulty neutralising and excreting toxins. These toxins can accumulate outside cells and poison them, upsetting the homeostatic balance of the whole ‘ecosystem’. As the body’s difficulties increase, diseases sequence through well-defined symptom-expressing phases; ranging from acute (inflammatory), through chronic, and finally to life-threatening changes.

Homotoxicological preparations are complex mixtures of remedies (see www.heel.com) designed to help restore the body’s homeostatic balance at the organ and cellular levels, so better performing its essential tasks of neutralisation, excretion, and protecting cells against toxic damage, i.e., organ and cell support and drainage.

Physiological Regulating Medicine (PRM, also known as the Guna method: www.gunainc.com), is the latest ‘upgrade’, integrating homeopathy, homotoxicology, nutrition and ‘psycho-neuro-endocrine-immunology’ or PNEI. This describes how homeostatic balance is maintained at the biochemical level, via ultra-sensitive ligand-receptor biochemical feedback mechanisms. PNEI involves minute amounts of cellular communication molecules, e.g., hormones, neuro-peptides, interleukins, and growth factors.

PRM follows the same holistic ecological principles of homotoxicology, with modern knowledge of its governing PNEI biochemical feedback ‘network’. So PRM remedies also contain homeopathic preparations of cellular communication molecules at the minute amounts they appear in the body.

Dental fillings are an amalgam of at least three different metals besides mercury, including copper, silver, and tin. Each metal has a different electrical potential. This amalgam bathed in electrolytes (saliva, tissue fluids etc), acts like a battery, releasing tiny amounts of the metals, causing the metallic taste many patients report. Mercury suppresses the immune system, interferes with inflammatory PNEI processes, while acting as a potent anti-microbial. Removing dental mercury therefore can sometimes leave the body vulnerable to infections.

So, apart from assisting the body in sequestering and excreting mercury, homotoxicology/PRM during filling removal aims to prepare and help rejuvenate the body’s suppressed immune system. In addition, other dental problems (e.g., those involving the temporomandibular joint – TMJ) may also benefit during dental treatment from homeopathy, homotoxicology, and PRM, alongside acupuncture, and cranio-sacral therapy.

  1. 2.  Remedies: some ‘serving suggestions’

Mercury causes damage to delicate phospho-lipid membranes that surround each of our body’s cells. This releases a cascade of cell communication molecules (enzymes and interleukins) to be released, leading to on-going inflammatory processes that ultimately upset the PNEI balance, and hence the immune system.

In addition, mercury further weakens the immune system by binding to naturally-occurring chelator molecules (e.g., glutathione and sulphur-containing proteins) vital for combating oxidative stress. Consequently, mercury can have wide-ranging toxic effects on the body.

To help combat mercury toxicity, we use homotoxicological/PRM preparations and micro-nutrients before and after mercury removal, as well as for other dental and related problems.

Here is just a sample of some of the remedies you might be given, and some of the conditions they might help  – the list is BY NO MEANS exhaustive or set in stone, and will vary from case to case:-

HOMOTOXICOLOGY*(Liquids & Pills)

PRM†(Liquids & Pills)

TISSUE SALTS‡ (Soft Pills)

Micronutrient combinations







Chlorella Help sequester and excrete mercury from the body Citomix Supports immune system in acute/chronic  inflammatory infections Comb H +Kali Mur Support for issues of toxicity around mercury in amalgam
Detox Kit Primes liver, kidneys, and lymphatic system for body detox Eubioflor For intestinal dysbiosis e.g., antibiotic treatment Comb R Support for post-treatment dental problems
Engystol Helps activate non-specific immune system after Hg removal Guna Cell Helps stimulate cellular metabolism  
Merc  Heel In the event of skin and mucosal eruptions after Hg removal Guna Matrix Helps detox extra-cellular spaces where toxins accumulate
Traumeel Injuries, e.g., post-op inflammation, oedema, etc Guna Fem/ Male Helps rebalance PNEI axis in women/men.
Ubichinon Comp Stimulates immune system against toxins blocking  enzymatic pathways *Homotoxicology remedies  made by Heel in Germany and supplied in the UK by Biopathica Ltd:
†PRM remedies made by Guna in Italy and supplied in the UK by Cyto-Solutions Ltd;
‡Micro-nutrient tissue salts by New Era and can be obtained from any good
chemist, or health-food outlet, e.g., Holland & Barrett, The Nutricentre (London)
Co-enzyme Comp Helps reactivate blocked  enzyme systems in degenerative Dx


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What Is Homotoxicology?

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Click the Chart to Enlarge

 The above chart is a slight modification to the practice of homotoxicology. Information about the Phases of Homotoxicology can be found HERE.

Homotoxicology is a scientifically proven and extensively researched medical practice that studies the effects of toxic substances on the human body. It integrates new advances in modern medical science like pathology, toxicology, biology, enzymology, and immunology with homeopathic principles of treatment.

It’s a fairly new approach to medicine that understands disease to be caused by a build up of toxins in the body. Prolonged exposure to such toxins, also knows as homotoxins, are commonly found in the environment; the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat. The severity of an illness often depends on the intensity and duration of toxic blockages and, the body’s natural ability to detoxify or eliminate such threatening poisons.

Some common examples of homotoxins include:

  1. Mercury fillings in teeth.
  2. Unhealthy microorganisms in the gut often caused by an unhealthy diet, hormone replacement therapy, and/or antibiotics.
  3. Chronic yeast infections (Candida).
  4. Exposure to unhealthy electro-magnetic fields.
  5. Air pollution
  6. Pesticides
  7. Undiagnosed bacteria such as salmonella
  8. Undiagnosed stomach infections

What naturopathic practitioners  do, is investigate, identify and eliminate the homotoxins from the body using custom tailored protocols, lifestyle guidance and natural homeopathic preparations. Empowering the body to naturally get rid of such poisons will bring about healing and restore vitality.

Homotoxicology is an evolved form of natural health care whose roots stem from the foundation of Homeopathy.

Homotoxicology began about 50 years ago in Germany and is now widely used around the world with tremendous success. The German physician Hans-Heinrich Reckeweg expanded Homotoxicology into a medical theory based on an ancient Chinese concept. In 1955 Reckeweg published his six-phase table of Homotoxicosis. Each of the six phases offers a state-of-health description of disease progression and the best naturally charged healing direction to take.

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Oasis Of Hope Dr. Francisco Contreras

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45th Annual
Cancer Convention

Sept. 2, 3 & 4, 2017

Sat., Sun. & Mon. – Labor Day Weekend

For Info Click HERE

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