The job of a naturopath is to integrate traditional knowledge with modern research.
Modern medicine offers such fast and dramatic results, that many effective traditional treatments have fallen out of favour undeservedly. There is tremendous benefit to be found in rediscovering those old “slow” remedies where appropriate, and combining them with the life-saving miracle of modern medicine when required.
Basically, integrative medicine is common sense. For example, a patient who suffers a heart attack should not be treated by herbal medicine, because it will likely NOT prevent him from dying. But once that patient has been saved by modern medicine, herbal medicine, dietary and lifestyle changes will help to prevent the problem from recurring. Similarly, an anti-inflammatory will help you get rid of period pain, but a naturopath will help you discover the cause behind your symptoms, and treat it. Treatment will take months, not minutes, but your overall health will benefit.
Also, as most people will discover at some point, quick fixes often come with a price tag. Natural medicines can help moderate the side-effects of medications, which save our life but damage your long-term health in the process. This is what integrative medicine is all about for me – common sense and best patient outcomes.