About Naturopathic Care
Naturopathic physicians are trained in all aspects of family and primary care and are primary care physicians in licensed states. They attend a 4-year medical school and pass board exams in order to be licensed, similar to allopathic physicians.
In the US, naturopathic physicians are licensed as health care providers in 17 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. New York State does not currently have a law licensing naturopathic physicians, but there is strong effort underway to pursue licensure which is expected to occur in the near future. Due to the absence of licensing laws in New York, Drs. Serena Ma and Christine Hwang act as naturopathic health consultants and cannot diagnose or treat diseases as a physician. For more information, please visit the New York Association of Naturopathic Physicians (NYANP).
Naturopathic physicians are trained in vitamin and mineral supplementation, herbal remedies, homeopathic remedies, physical medicine, hydrotherapy treatment, and nutrition. Strong emphasis is placed on diet and lifestyle.
Six Principles of Naturopathic Medicine
Each patient is considered with these principles in mind:
The Healing Power of Nature - The body is ordered and intelligent, therefore we identify and remove obstacles to cure and help facilitate this natural healing ability.
Treat the Cause - We identify and remove the underlying causes of illness.
First Do No Harm - We utilize methods and substances which minimize the risk of harmful side effects.
Doctor as Teacher - We educate the patient and encourage self-responsibility for health.
Treat the Whole Person - We treat the individual by taking into account physical, mental, emotional, genetic, environmental, social and other factors.
Prevention - We emphasize disease prevention by assessing risk factors to disease and suggest appropriate interventions to prevent future illness
Naturopathic doctors are experts in nutrition. In fact, we always start with food and digestion for all our naturopathic patients.
Many of us find that figuring out what to eat is confusing. There are so many different diets out there: vegetarian, vegan, macrobiotic, raw food, Blood Type, Paleo, GAPS, etc. We will help you come up with a food plan that suits your beliefs without compromising nutrition. We believe that there is no single diet that suits everyone. Ultimately we promote:
- whole, non-processed foods
- colorful fruits & vegetables, preferably organic
- low refined (and unrefined) sugars
- sustainable seafood that is low in toxicity
pasture-raised, hormone- and antibiotic-free meat, if you eat meat
We help our patients navigate labels and figure out what they should and should not be eating according to each individual's situation.