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Online Naturopathic Courses
Here we will discuss some of the courses related to naturopathic medicine that can commonly be taken through online undergraduate and master's degree programs in the health sciences.
- In an intro to naturopathic medicine course, students discuss how naturopathic medicine seeks to support health and healing of bodily systems. Key concepts, including vitalism and the mind-body connection, along with focusing on removing the cause of illness rather than treating symptoms and emphasizing personal responsibility for health, are discussed at length. Differences in the approaches to healing from the naturopathic and medical science standpoints are also thoroughly examined.
- Through the cross-cultural health perspectives course, students discuss the role of culture in defining health. Approaches to healing, both Western and non-Western, are considered, including traditional healing and biomedical practices. Topics include a study of naturopathic medical practices from around the world, such as traditional Chinese medicine concepts like Yin and Yang, an understanding of physiology through the fundamental substances and the meridian theory.
- The botanical therapeutics course focuses on botanical medicinal therapeutics. It considers how they compare and contrast with pharmaceutical medicinal therapeutics. It also provides an overview of herbal remedies used in the United States. Topics covered include botanical medication preparation and interactions and contraindications with pharmaceuticals, as well as their actions on the body. The naturopathic approach to use botanicals to treat disease rather than mask symptoms and to work with the body's own defense mechanisms are emphasized throughout.
- A naturopathic medical ethics course introduces the values of general medical ethics, including autonomy, beneficence, non-maleficence, justice, dignity, and honesty. Students consider how to develop a framework for making ethical decisions guided by these values and the law. An emphasis throughout is placed on boundaries in naturopathic medicine, along with when to refer patients to other or supplemental treatment.
- In the medicinal and culinary spices course, students will learn how to infuse certain spices into their cooking to enhance health benefits and treat specific health conditions, such as insomnia or depression. The course will focus on spices such as turmeric, ginger, and pepper.
- A course in holistic nutrition explores the importance of key nutrients from a holistic perspective. Students learn how diet can be used to improve physical, mental, and spiritual wellness. Topics of study include beneficial food combinations, juice therapy, and organic gardening.
- In an aromatherapy course, students are introduced to the basics of essential oils and how they can be used for therapeutic purposes. Students learn to identify many of these oils and create blends that can be used to treat a variety of physical and psychological conditions.
Naturopathic programs recognized by the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges and the Council on Naturopathic Medical Education that lead to the Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine cannot be completed online. However, online continuing education opportunities are available for naturopathic doctors, chiropractors, and nutritionists. It's also possible to find individual online courses related to naturopathic medicine that can satisfy requirements for associate, bachelor's, and master's degree programs in the health sciences.
Although doctoral degree programs in naturopathic medicine are not available online, interested individuals can find relevant courses in complementary medicine that can augment their existing education or lead to a lower level degree.