MD vs. ND. Like an MD, ND’s are primary care physicians. However, just one little letter switch
can make a world of difference in the care you receive. Naturopathic doctors are practitioners of
alternative medicine that are educated and trained in accredited naturopathic medical colleges
that teach a blend of conventional healthcare and traditional natural cures and remedies.

What’s the Difference?

While conventional medicine often works to eradicate the symptoms of disease, naturopathic
medicine seeks to diagnose, treat and prevent the underlying causes of illness. It’s often a more
holistic approach that addresses the whole person—mind, body and spirit—in order to restore
optimal health.
Health isn’t simply the absence of disease, it’s the state of physical, mental and emotional well-
being, and naturopathic doctors look to support a person’s inherent self-healing process through
natural methods.
Naturopathic doctors can and do prescribe pharmaceutical drugs when necessary, but their
treatment approach usually embraces many additional therapies, such as herbs, massage,
acupuncture and nutritional counseling.

The Principles of Naturopathic Medicine

The overarching goal of naturopathic care is to restore balance to the body, and at its core, this
type of medicine is distinguished by six principles:
1. First, Do No Harm: Use the most natural, least invasive and least toxic therapies
2. The Healing Power of Nature: Embrace the healing power of nature and harness the
body’s inherent wisdom to heal itself.
3. Identify and Treat the Causes: Look to the underlying causes of illness and remove
obstacles to the cure.
4. Doctor as Teacher: Educate patients about how to achieve and maintain health and well-
being and empower them to take responsibility for their own health.
5. Treat the Whole Person: Understand the interconnectedness between the body, mind
and spirit and approach it as an integrated whole.
6. Prevention: Promote a focus on overall health, wellness and disease prevention.

Should You Make the Switch?

If you’ve been struggling on your health journey and ping-ponging from MD to MD in search of
answers for a chronic illness, maybe it’s time to try an ND. Naturopathic medicine aims to
provide relief of chronic conditions by offering holistic perspectives and treatments. It can
effectively address numerous health issues, such as diabetes, asthma, allergies, fertility
challenges, heart disease, digestive disorders, and respiratory conditions.
Typical ND appointments range from one to two hours. They’ll assess not only your health
history but also your diet, lifestyle habits, stress levels, environment, exercise, and more to come
up with a personalized plan of action moving forward.

If you want to learn more about naturopathic medicine and book an appointment with one of our
NDs, contact our team at 808 Wellness: Healing Spa & Maui Yoga Studio in Kihei, HI. Our spa
offers several holistic medical services, including hot stone massages and acupuncture
treatments, as well as an online holistic boutique. Shipping available. View our full list of
services and retail online, or call (808) 875-4325 to schedule an appointment.