A naturopath aims to identify and treat the root cause of a health problem rather than simply treating the symptom. Just like treating a diseased plant or tree, you’d first look at nourishing and watering the soil at the roots (cause) rather than focusing on trying to treat the branches and wilting leaves (symptoms). If you have a migraine, you can take a painkiller and you’ve treated the symptom because the pain is gone, but why did you have that migraine in the first place? It wasn’t from a paracetamol deficiency, so you need to look upstream to find the reason why. Unless you remove the cause it’s likely to return another day.

Consultations are typically 60-90 minutes where we discuss all the systems of the body (not just focusing on your presenting symptoms). No system in the body is working in isolation, they are all communicating with each other and working together, so if one system is out of balance it’s going to affect another system. This is where we treat the whole body. Acne for example is not just a skin problem, it can be a hormonal imbalance, liver detoxification problem, digestive insufficiency, gut problem such as a microflora imbalance, leaky gut and inflammation which can then further exacerbate nutritional deficiencies – the list goes on! Each person will have their own root cause(s) driving their condition, so therefore will have their own personalised protocol which can include a combination of diet, supplements, herbs, homeopathy, detoxification, acid/alkaline balance, stress management, exercise etc. Its all about treating the cause and not the symptom because the body has its own inherent ability to heal itself if you allow it by removing what’s blocking this process – the healing power of nature.  Below is an example of some additional tools that a naturopath may use during a consultation or treatment protocol.

Finding the root cause


Iridology is the study of the iris which when magnified using an iridology torch makes visible a variety of different colours, markings, patterns, and textures which are unique to each person just like our fingerprints. In a similar way to reflexology where our body systems are mapped out in reflex points on the soles of the feet, so too are our body systems mapped out in the iris of the eyes. By looking at the iris an iridologist can see where your inherent genetic weakness lie. It’s not diagnostic in the sense that you will develop these problems, but if you are aware of your weaknesses then you can make changes in your diet and lifestyle so that you work towards suppressing these genetic tendencies from being expressed.

Bach Flower Therapy

Flower essences work on the mental and emotional level to gently shift the body’s energy when we become out of balance. It’s a form of energetic medicine which floods the body with the unique vibrational essence of the particular plant used. Naturopaths believe that you can’t heal the body until you heal the mind, there are various dis-eases that have a mind-body connection. A few examples where flower essences can help are with low mood, self-hate, anxiety, fear, panic, circulating repetitive thoughts, over-care for others, impatience, irritability, feelings of over-work, over-whelm and exhaustion. Their gentle nature allows them to be used by everyone (including children), a naturopath can mix up to 7 different essences to create a personalised remedy. The most famous flower essence that most people are familiar with is Rescue Remedy. 


Homeopathy is an energetic medicine system that treats like with like, but instead of using raw ingredients such as the plant parts, it works on the energetics of the plant or animal (homeopathic remedies are made from virtually anything). The original mixture containing the raw ingredient is diluted and succussed (shaken) over and over until nothing remains except the energy, the more dilute the higher the vibration.  Although I’m not a qualified homeopath, I’m trained to use the pills for acute conditions. Homeopathy is very safe due to being based on energy, so in some situations it’s a better choice of treatment.   

Tissue Salts

Tissue salts are also known as cell salts, biochemic salts, or Schuessler salts (after the German physician who developed the concept). The discovery of 12 mineral salts in the inorganic mineral ash of the burnt human body revealed that organs are made of various minerals and their different ratios. Schuessler’s theory proposed that it was these minerals and their ratios that were vital for the functioning of cells and organ systems. He also concluded that Imbalances or deficiencies of these essential minerals within the cells can lead to various health conditions. The salts are prepared using a homeopathic dilution process where the final product contains extremely small amounts of the mineral, for this reason they are likened to the vitamins and minerals of homeopathy. These small particles are rapidly absorbed through the mucous membranes in the mouth where they can pass directly into the cells bypassing the digestive system. Tissue salts include salts of minerals that are found naturally in the body such as calcium, potassium, sodium, magnesium, iron, and silica, there are 12 in total. By replenishing deficient minerals tissue salts help to restore balance and support the body’s healing process.

Herbal Medicine

Herbal medicine, also known as botanical medicine, is the practice of using plant-based materials for medicinal purposes. It is one of the oldest forms of medicine and involves using different parts of plants such as leaves, flowers, stems, roots, and seeds, to create remedies that support health and treat various health conditions. Herbal medicine utilizes the active constituents present in plants, such as phytochemicals, essential oils, alkaloids, flavonoids, and other bioactive compounds. Herbs have a vast array of therapeutic actions, for example adaptogens help with rebalancing the body both mentally and physically, tonics help with building up a depleted body so it’s more resilient. Some herbs have specific antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory or analgesic properties and some help to manage specific conditions such as hormone balance, digestive disorders, skin conditions and respiratory ailments. Herbs come in the form of teas, tinctures, powders, capsules, and creams and can be combined to create a personalised remedy.  Medications are checked against a professional drug-herb interaction checker to make sure they are safe to take along-side any prescription medication. Not suitable during pregnancy.  


Naturopaths consider the energetics of the person when selecting foods by using the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Ayurveda to evaluate your constitution or state. Symptoms, physical appearance, tongue, and nail analysis give clues about energetic imbalances. Food carries not only physical nutrients but also energetic properties that can impact the body. Correct choice of foods, herbs and spices that compliments your constitution will help to generate homeostasis, for example warming and heating foods for cold states, cooling foods for heated conditions, moist foods for dryness and drying foods for conditions of excess moisture.

Environmental Medicine

Toxins are everywhere in our environment, there’s no escaping them, they’re in the air we breathe, the rainwater that falls on our crops, pesticides sprayed on food, plastics leaching their toxins and hormone disrupting chemicals into water bottles and food containers, exhaust fumes, cleaning fluids, paint fumes, off-gassing from home furnishing, non-stick coatings on cookware, new clothes sprayed with fire retardants, cosmetic chemicals we put on our skin – it’s impossible to escape them all! The problems they create in the body are now starting to appear in the research. Although we can’t escape the toxic world we live in, there are things a naturopath can teach you to help reduce your toxic load, they can also teach you ways to support your detoxification systems which help remove these chemicals from the body.

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