The petition that riled naturopathic medicine

The petition to end all petitions.
The petition to end all petitions? Image from redalertpolitics.com.

When I started the “Naturopaths are not Doctors” petition (below), it was on the heels of the annual naturopathic medicine lobbying event where naturopaths “storm” the U.S. Capitol to advocate for their alternative system of medicine. I thought my petition would be an easy way to voice opposition to their political agenda, which includes getting NDs licensed in all 50 states by 2025 and their inclusion in Medicare with a pilot program as soon as possible. My petition against naturopathic medicine was an experiment. It turned out I scared the crap out of naturopaths.


Fumbling Leaders of Naturopathic Medicine

Five days after I launched the petition immediately above, the Executive Director of the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians, Ryan Cliche, sent an email to all members urging them to report my petition for breaking the law. I kid you not. He claimed that my petition contains libelous content and violates Change.org’s policies against impersonation and disrespecting the rights of others. Here is his email:

Screenshot 2016-06-09 20.33.21

The American Associations of Naturopathic Physicians then started its own petition aimed at me because I allegedly “disregarded facts and evidence about naturopathic medicine.” According to them, “Blog or opinion pieces by advocate groups against naturopathic physicians are not credible references.”

Let’s get this straight. If someone does not support naturopathic medicine, then that person’s writing is not credible? That’s right, the AANP would rather accuse critics of libel than address and remedy the pitfalls of its profession that have been well-documented by those who took the time to investigate. Like me, these critics are motivated by the desire to protect patients from financial, physical, and emotional damage. We cringe at the thought of pseudoscience masquerading as medicine.

Dear Ryan Cliche and the AANP

You must have at least one lawyer on retainer who could have explained to you what defamation is and what it is not. You could have Googled it. Let me help. To commit libel, one must publish statements that are false, damaging, not supported by adequate research, and done so with the intent to cause harm.

What part of my petition contains false information? Perhaps you think it is the part where I say:

Naturopaths are not trained similar to physicians, nurse practitioners, or physician assistants. Naturopaths are trained in a hodgepodge of antiquated methods, mystical theories, and bare-bone fundamentals of medicine.

Or, maybe you think it is where I say:

Naturopathic students are required to master homeopathy, energy modalities, herbalism, chiropractic-like manipulations, and therapies involving heat and water. There is a strong emphasis on anti-vaccine promotion and alternative cancer treatments.

If you think “yes,” then perhaps you should read the 18 references I provide at the end of the petition. I chose these 18, since they provide facts about naturopathic education and practice that honestly contradict the promotional spin provided by naturopaths. It just so happens that you don’t like these references because they arrive at conclusions that should, in a reasonable person, elicit extreme misgivings at the thought of naturopathic doctors treating patients. My experiences training at Bastyr University and practicing for three years in Washington and Arizona support these grim assessments of the naturopathic profession.

Please show me multiple, independent sources of information that demonstrate that naturopathic doctors are trained just like physicians and are competent professionals in the practice of medicine. It will not be easy to overturn the overarching consensus that naturopathic medicine is quackery that puts the public in danger at the hands of severely under trained practitioners, who rampantly use homeopathy, shamelessly contribute to lower vaccination rates, and possess whimsical notions of human physiology and disease pathology.

To make matters worse, you probably also didn’t like it when, about two months ago, Carly Weeks reported in the Globe and Mail that about half of the licensed naturopaths in Toronto with an online presence were in violation of advertising regulations for making statements such as “naturopathic medicine can ‘act as primary treatment’ for cancer” or saying that thermography can detect early breast changes “before the growth of a tumour.”

You probably felt less than thrilled when Rebecca Robins wrote in Stat News that licensed naturopaths, “often derided as quacks,” use discredited therapies that include detoxes, mega-vitamin injections, and blood-type diets and exercises. Robins goes on to cite you, Mr. Cliche, saying that the AANP is “still discussing its stance on vaccinations.”

Let’s pause here. It is 2016. Yet, an aspiring medical organization is still trying to figure out whether to support vaccinations? This is undoubtedly because the entire population of NDs has been trained in anti-vaccination ways of thinking. I’ve shown it on my syllabi of pediatrics courses I took at Bastyr University. But I was not the first. These anti-vaccine ideologies in the naturopathic profession and subsequent effects have been well-documented by public health researchers and concerned physicians (which are cited in my petition). Why can’t naturopaths at least get on board with vaccines and, please, denounce homeopathy for the quackery that it is?

You want NDs to be in Medicare? You think NDs provide high-quality medicine? Surely you’re joking, Mr. Cliche!

Sign the petition!

I know Change.org petitions can be annoying, and for causing annoyance, I apologize. That being said, the AANP is none too happy about the support my petition has gained in a short amount of time. Neither are other naturopaths. A “fact check” website was put up at brittmariehermesfactcheck.com, which, as you probably guessed, is less than compelling.

I hope that once you’ve checked the facts, you’ll want to sign my petition and share it with everyone you know. This could very well have real political effects by keeping medicine in the hands of those trained through a system based in science. We need more PAs, APRNs, DOs, and MDs to work in primary care medicine. We need fewer naturopaths.

Thus far, the greatest effect of my petition has been causing the AANP and other naturopaths to flail about in trying to exact an appropriate response. Kavin Senapathy nailed this account in her Forbes piece. If I were them, I would simply ignore me. Instead, naturopaths have lost control. We have yet to see naturopaths collectively behave in a way that defines a trustworthy and capable medical profession.

Let’s get more signatures and see what happens next!

  • Travis

    Great work as always.

    Small typo with “To matters worse”

    • https://www.naturopathicdiaries.com Britt Hermes

      Thanks Travis!

  • http://naturocrit.podbean.com/ Naturocrit Podcast and Blog

    The Naturocrit Podcast and Blog:

    Great post and strategy.

    I’m sure you’ve gotten some nasty language your way from NDs and supporters.

    About six months ago I reported local Connecticut NDs to authorities because I thought that what they were doing — hyperbaric oxygen treatments for children with autism, homeopathy-urine-electrodermal computer fiction (by an AANP board member, BTW), accounts of compounding and injecting a minor with their own blood mixed with homeopathic junk — was very WRONG.

    But, though they are licensed in Connecticut, nothing happened because they regulate themselves and there is no statute-iterated code of ethics or standard of practice.

    So, they have the ability to do harm without boundaries / borders.

    Hey, have you heard of “Naturopaths Without Borders”? (www.nwb.ngo/).

    Domestically, in North America, that is…

    ‘Physician-level intervention without physician-level rules and penalties for breaking those rules’, and ‘science as anything’:

    literally, naturopaths without borders.

    Glad I just wrote this comment, just got an idea for the latest script!

    -r.c.

    • has

      “Hey, have you heard of “Naturopaths Without Borders”?”

      Borders are one thing they’re certainly without.

      • daviddavy

        have you ever heard of commentor without intelligence, ‘ has’ ya….?

    • Louise Johnson

      r.c. thanks for writing your blog. I read it regularly.

      • daviddavy

        ah where do you read it?? all one item ??

      • http://naturocrit.podbean.com/ Naturocrit Podcast and Blog

        Why thanks. I’m still fascinated by naturopathy.

        -r.c.

    • daviddavy

      You must be really experienced; and important; you have 1, ONE, follower; and I think your real name rhymes with ‘sqirmies,’ or wormies… have you ever heard of dumb as a stump…. you must think readers are just that. The British Medical Association regularly invites ND’s as keynote speakers and approves peer reviews of scientific research conducted by ND researchers.

      • Marcel

        As a former peer-reviewer for a number of scientific journals, including those in which NDs attempted to be or were eventually published, I can assure you that neither an invitation or publication by the BMA amounts to credibility.

    • https://www.naturopathicdiaries.com Britt Hermes

      Thanks for your support r.c.

  • http://naturocrit.podbean.com/ Naturocrit Podcast and Blog

    The Naturocrit Podcast and Blog:

    Great post and strategy.

    I’m sure you’ve gotten some nasty language your way from NDs and supporters.

    About six months ago I reported local Connecticut NDs to authorities because I thought that what they were doing — hyperbaric oxygen treatments for children with autism, homeopathy-urine-electrodermal computer fiction (by an AANP board member, BTW), accounts of compounding and injecting a minor with their own blood mixed with homeopathic junk — was very WRONG.

    But, though they are licensed in Connecticut, nothing happened because they regulate themselves and there is no statute-iterated code of ethics or standard of practice.

    So, they have the ability to do harm without boundaries / borders.

    Hey, have you heard of “Naturopaths Without Borders”? (www.nwb.ngo/).

    Domestically, in North America, that is…

    ‘Physician-level intervention without physician-level rules and penalties for breaking those rules’, and ‘science as anything’:

    literally, naturopaths without borders.

    Glad I just wrote this comment, just got an idea for the latest script!

    -r.c.

  • Marcel

    “To commit libel, one must publish statements that are false, damaging,
    not supported by adequate research, and done so with the intent to cause
    harm.” Let’s see. Where should I begin? “Breaks the law,” “Impersonates others”, and “does not abide by the law or respect the rights of others” seem rather libelous to me. And how about Britt Hermes “is not from the United States”? Since when? As a citizen, she has every right to voice her concerns. For that matter, even though she currently resides abroad, she is not only legally a citizen of the U.S., but required to report income and pay U.S. taxes.

    • has

      Aren’t they simply priceless? I recommend that Britt’s next Internet petition be for an ANTI-SLAPP.NET. Once she stops laughing, of course.

      More seriously, you’d think a “Profession” that demands the right to play God with others’ lives would have got all of its evidence of safety and efficacy nailed down first; in which case they could’ve instantly dismissed all of Ms Hermes criticisms through simple presentation of cold hard facts. But instead they call the Waaahmbulance – how Alternative is that?

      • Marcel

        Priceless? Yes, but let’s not discount sanctimonious.

      • daviddavy

        almost as silly as Ms Hermes and her equally odd husband pretending to be other people so concerned as to write independent thought comments….

        • has

          Phillip Hills Hope Osteopathic Clinic Essex, per chance? One old sock smells a lot like another.

          • Marcel

            Thanks for the tip. Had I revealed my identity, the response would have been considerably different—if there was any at all.

    • daviddavy

      hello not real person… Britt, you need to learn different writing styles. You make Don’l Trump sound intellectual… stump crawler, desist or bear the wrath of Lawd Voldemort, another ‘real’ person…

  • Crash Hammerdog

    The more I read about Naturopaths the more similarities I see with religious cults. Their reaction to the petition falls in line with that metaphor.
    Britt, Your work telling the Naturopathic path from the inside is some of the best skeptical writing I have read, and I read a lot. I respect the courage that you had to summon to abandon what you used to believe and in consequence losing a big chunk of your social network.
    It appears that you did scare the crap out of them and if that brings on retaliation, I hope you can be assured that you have a very enthusiastic fan base at your back.
    Keep it up. I hope with your strong voice leading the charge we can de legitimize naturopathy in all fifty states.

  • Crash Hammerdog

    The more I read about Naturopaths the more similarities I see with religious cults. Their reaction to the petition falls in line with that metaphor.
    Britt, Your work telling the Naturopathic path from the inside is some of the best skeptical writing I have read, and I read a lot. I respect the courage that you had to summon to abandon what you used to believe and in consequence losing a big chunk of your social network.
    It appears that you did scare the crap out of them and if that brings on retaliation, I hope you can be assured that you have a very enthusiastic fan base at your back.
    Keep it up. I hope with your strong voice leading the charge we can de legitimize naturopathy in all fifty states.

    • daviddavy

      y’all have interesting pseudonames; just Britt clones ??

      • Petticoat Philosopher

        Amazingly, Britt is not the only person to whom it has occurred that making up illnesses and then treating them with magic water (or worse, treating real illnesses that way) is a silly thing to do.

      • Thomas Mohr

        The old argument again. This means you have NO arguments watsoever and lost this part of the discussion. With regard to the BMA: They move to ban a large part of naturopathy, i.e. homeopathy from NHS. With regard to research. Of all the NDs I have discussed with, NONE has a publication record that comes even close to a record comarable even to an PhD student. That goes for entire Universities. Basty f.i. has 15 papers published in 2015.

    • https://www.naturopathicdiaries.com Britt Hermes

      Thanks Crash!

    • http://www.hempista.com/ Hempista

      They sure don’t debate and argue the way MDs and science people do. lol. The personal attacks here are really unprofessional. For a patient, and that’s what I am, just a patient, it really scares me away from ND services even more. Even the MDs with a personality of a rotten cork graduating at the bottom of the class has a more measured discussion approach without stalking and personal attacks–I say that as a patient who has seen dozens upon dozens of MDs in my life–even the worst ones do not behave like the ND representatives here.

      Britt is a good person. She really sacrificed a lot to do the right thing for patients. She’s not a ‘failed ND’ she’s a successful healer, far more successful at saving lives than her attackers.

  • Axl Rosacea

    It has been well worth the annoyance of Change.org and their subsequent emails to sign this important petition. Unlike homeopathy, this could actually work!

    • daviddavy

      axl, no wonder the srn.. I’d be redfaced, too

  • Charles Tryon

    Just signed.
    I’ve been “treated” by a friend who was a naturopathic doctor. Great friend who honestly believes that she is helping people… but when she was doing the exam to find all these matching “toxins”, and then transferring “energy signatures” to this little bottle… I just had this really weird feeling about watching someone doing real, live Hocus Pocus. She sounded all scientific and all (the kind of lingo that would convince a lot of people), but I couldn’t find anything that actually had a basis in honest to goodness science. I talk to doctors all the time when I’m seeing them for whatever reason, and this was just … different.

    • daviddavy

      did the medicine help you ?? I’m trained to spot script and needed notoriety writers. you fit the mold. I don’t believe a word you write. And your description of her process is bogus. And then you just happened to find this page ???? oh, yeah….You’d be great friends with a deceptive fraud ? What kind of person does that make you.

      • Charles Tryon

        No.

        Not sure what kind of mold you’re making up, but I don’t fit it, I can assure you.

        You are very good at name calling though….

        • has

          Don’t waste your time, mate. It smells like Phildo’s arrived, renowned Essex troll of a thousand sticky socks whose sole claim to fame and achievement in life is to periodically pop its rectal pustules in a number of science and medicine blogs (including Respectful Insolence and Science Based Medicine, so probably wandered in from there). Irrational, incoherent, obssessive, fixated, potty mouthed, utter bore. Completely beyond any reasoning, rationality, or reality; you’ll never get anywhere by engaging with it: its only desire is attention and to poop on the rug. Best starved or hellbanned on sight, if only to save the furniture.

          8/10 An excellent ambassador for the AltMed Cult; may their prospective marks take note.

          • Charles Tryon

            Yeah, I’ve been through flame wars since before the dawn of the Internet. I know the type. Thank you for the kind heads-up though! 😉

          • Charles Tryon

            Yeah, I’ve been through flame wars since before the dawn of the Internet. I know the type. Thank you for the kind heads-up though! 😉

      • Charles Tryon

        No.

        Not sure what kind of mold you’re making up, but I don’t fit it, I can assure you.

        You are very good at name calling though….

      • Petticoat Philosopher

        Um, why exactly is it so hard to believe that someone who knows a naturopath would “just happen,” to find this blog? I don’t know how or why Charles found it but lots of people seek out voices of scientific skepticism when they come into contact with pseudoscience. That was certainly true of me–I found this blog through Science-Based Medicine.

        And why is his description of his friend’s process bogus? I mean, the process is bogus but, since there are no standards of care, it seems like naturopaths have a lot of encouragement and wide latitude to just make things up based on the smorgasbord of magical theories they’re taught. Naturopathy seems well-suited to cowboys. And why not? If you’re savvy enough at promoting your own unique treatment or diet or whatever, you can set up quite a booming business. Which will certainly come in handy for paying off those astronomical student loans.

        • has

          Mate, it’s an unhinged multiple-sock-wearing troll whose first mode of attack is to call everyone else here lying sock puppets invented by our gracious host.

          There’s no way you can engage that will do anything but encourage it, because it doesn’t believe in anything except smearing its worm-stained feces on every single surface that presents itself. As the sainted WLU teaches us, best not be that surface.

          Besides, its disgusting mouth already speaks for itself better than any response we could ever make.

      • Louise Johnson

        Oh, is homeopathic “succusion” not considered weird by anyone with a drop of knowledge about what it is? Shaking water to transfer energy and then thumping the container is science-bases? thanks for the laugh…

  • http://www.hempista.com/ Hempista

    I would love to have the scratch to lay down for some bogus ‘tests’ oh like maybe ‘IgG Food Sensitivities’ just for a few laughs (people that know me here know I have anaphylaxis and real IgE food allergies) juat to see if the Naturopath ‘doctors’ can catch my life threatening allergies in their testing regimes. I can pretty much guarantee this would never happen. They also never deal with rare autoimmune disorders and could never in a million years get close to a proper diagnosis for that either. If anyone is foolish enough to think that an ND can do what it took a dozen highly skilled rare disease doctors to do at Stanford hospital I have some swampland in Florida I am trying to get rid of… lol

  • http://www.hempista.com/ Hempista

    Here’s one more fact to lay down–when you have a rare disease otherwise known as orphan disease and you enter into the evidence-based medical system you will be punted from doctor to doctor to doctor to doctor for months maybe years before you finally land at the doorstep of some world-famous rare disease doctor(s). See, the reason for that is that is in evidence-based science doctors will refuse to treat you or diagnose you. Why? BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT QUALIFIED. And doctors in evidence-based medicine readily admit when they are not qualified because of their oaths and liability a rare disease patient presents.

    Now when was the last time you heard of an ND not treating a patient because they weren’t qualified? Real doctors admit their weaknesses all the time. Where are the NDs with weaknesses or unwillingness to treat diseases they know nothing about? lol

  • David

    But they do not need to diagnose you or put a label on your disease. They will treat the root cause. They will clear your gut of candida and at the same time prevent it from leaking. They will fix your subclinical thyroid disease and and adrenal fatigue. They may even call in their chiropractic friend to crack your back so you can harness your “innate” ability to heal yourself. Rare disease entities like you have been labeled with are just a ploy by big pharma in combination with doctors to get rich.

    • http://www.hempista.com/ Hempista

      lol! This is so funny because it is true. Also, I’ve had naturopaths say these exact things to me. One thing I would like to note here–is about this candida stuff in naturopathy and how angry it makes me. So, I have REAL yeast (Saccharomyces) anaphylaxis. And when I first got diagnosed with that at Stanford I had to see the hospital dietitian to help me understand where Saccharomyces is (in stuff you would not imagine, gahhh) and one of the biggest impediments I ran into trying to manage this allergy was attempting to research it online (it is very very rare) all of the legitimate medical information is crowded out of the search results for hundreds of pages with this candida bullshit. I could not properly research for my own health because of the crap crowding out what I needed to save my life.

      And when it comes to ‘sub-clinical thyroid and adrenal fatigue’ well I had scads of Hashimotos antibodies before my TSH tests started to turn (they did turn shortly after the antibody discovery but I began treatment before the turn). And as for adrenal fatigue, well yah, you can get something like that after a long time on prednisone and trying to taper off. Which is what was going on with me too–lots of prednisone for too long.

      So all of the BS diagnosis from the naturopaths, a lot of it, from what I can tell, are stolen from legit allergy and autoimmune patients. I never knew any of this before I was sick.

    • Louise Johnson

      right, naturopathic “doctors” don’t need to diagnose illness, because they have a ready-made stock of bogus therapies and tests to deal out. And what exactly is that famous root cause?-Thank goodness naturopaths rarely say, “ah ha, I know what caused that toddler to get a glioblastoma”– By the way, how do you measure spiritual imbalance? How do you “know” something is out of balance unless you are making diagnosis based on symptoms–how are you not treating symptoms?
      Ah yes, the Big PHarma conspiracy theory gambit–do you think vitamin companies are altruistic hippies growing coneflowers in their backyard? Has it occured to you that someone with 10 years of training, beyond graduating from an extrordianarily competitive school, and has developed a vaccine that will save billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of lives in the US alone, might have earned every nickel he made–do you think that person might deserve to be well paid?

      • David

        Louise?! I was being facetious

        • Louise Johnson

          …oh darn, I wasn’t paying attention to the flow of comments and got on a roll there. My apologies.

  • Kevin

    My family naturoath took my father off of statin drugs 2 years ago, and improved his cholesterol with diet, and supplementation. He’s now in the normal range. Why is it that his MDs still insist that he be on these drugs that he doesnt need, and never talk about diet and lifestyle?
    I feel like the NDs are the ones keeping up with the latest science:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/06/12/high-cholesterol-does-not-cause-heart-disease-new-research-finds/

  • Kevin

    My family naturoath took my father off of statin drugs 2 years ago, and improved his cholesterol with diet, and supplementation. He’s now in the normal range. Why is it that his MDs still insist that he be on these drugs that he doesnt need, and never talk about diet and lifestyle?
    I feel like the NDs are the ones keeping up with the latest science:
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/06/12/high-cholesterol-does-not-cause-heart-disease-new-research-finds/

    • Thomas Mohr

      First, patient compliance is far better when one have to take pills than if one has to change the lifestyle.

      Second, this was not done because naturopaths are keeping up with science, but because naturopaths don’t like pills for ideological reasons – and this is the problem. Medicine is not about ideology, but about treatments that work and ones that do not work. Much of naturopatic medicine belongs to the latter category but is still done due to ideological reasons.

      • Kevin

        I see what you’re saying. My doc definitely has his own way of looking at these things. But I really like his style, and find him to be brilliant! He has really done great things for myself and other family members, that I never saw from a doc before. I’ve heard him talk about scientific studies quite a bit when explaining things, I always figure that he was doing his due diligence.

        What about MDs who ignore science and push pills instead of working on lifestyle or other things? This is almost an idealogy too, no?
        If its true I like that my naturo has an idealogy against pill popping.

        • Thomas Mohr

          Naturopaths and science. In my experience, naturopaths love science without understanding it. If you look at websites of naturopathic doctors, they are often jock full with citations of scientific papers “explaining” their therapies to the people. An example is this one: http://www.lexingtonnaturalhealth.com/pages/Conditions/Cancer.html.

          This guy does a lot of very expensive tests to “balance” the immune system in cancer patients, based on a lot of human and animal studies as he claims. There is only one “minor” problem. It is crap. Example: “Chemotherapy and radiation kill cancer cells directly, but cancer cells often gain resistance. Natural medicines in addition to chemotherapy and/or radiation, can prevent many resistance mechanisms from being acquired.” As you probably know I am a scientist in cancer research. I can tell you that this is based on some theoretical considerations that have been tested on cells at most. I.o.W. it is highly speculative. No MD would throw such things onto a patient. With naturopaths I sometimes have the feeling that they try everything they have heard about – immediately in real patients. The reason they do so is that they may read the science, but do not understand it. Given the academic record of Naturopathic Universities this is no wonder.

          • NS Alito

            Wait, does “can prevent many resistance mechanisms from being acquired” mean that it outwits the laws of evolution? Is it about rotating methods such that the genome can’t keep up?
            Enquiring minds want to know!

          • Kevin

            where should someone like my pop go to, if they want to get healthy and take less drugs? His old doc still wants him on stain, even though his cholesterol is looking good. That can’t be healthy. There is a strange ideaology with MDs here too, no?

            • Thomas Mohr

              Did you ask the MD *why* he still prescribes statin drugs ? It might well be that the drug your MD prescribes may have some additional effects (aside cholesterol reduction) such as lowering the risk of a heart attack.

            • Louise Johnson

              where should he go: the library? If he’s getting adequate nutrition (as opposed to unneeded supplements), he needs to maintain a healthy weight and exercise. How hard is that?
              If he needs to have his cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar evaluated, see an MD, PA, or Nurse Practitioner.
              If he needs a nice person to talk to, which is about the only strength naturopathic doctors seem to have, well, he needs a social life, not a doctor. And not a not-a-doctor.

        • Petticoat Philosopher

          MDs can’t work on lifestyle. Only patients can do that and many either won’t or have life circumstances that don’t allow for change. I have said this before but naturopathic patients are largely a self-selected group of people looking for a lifestyle overhaul who also have the ability and resources to implement one. I’ve never known a doctor who didn’t believe in lifestyle changes when appropriate but recommending them doesn’t mean you can enforce them.

    • David

      Studies have shown clearly that if your father is high risk then his cholesterol needs to be quite low– probably lower than diet alone can achieve. If he had not had a heart attack or stroke and is not diabetic, then diet and exercis may be enough. My guess is your naturopath doesn’t know the desired levels and is happy with a slight lowering

  • Molly Anderson

    My entire family is healthier and off ALL medications after we started receiving Naturopathic medical care. you sound like a bitter woman who is taking revenge on the fact YOU couldn’t succeed as a naturopathic doctor yourself and bitter about your student loan debt. I have read your blogs and your pseudo research. You my dear need to move on with your life. let it go. So naturopathic medicine wasn’t for you. Well, it serves me and my family and my 90 year old mother FABUlOUSLY!! YOU DO NOT SPEAK FOR ME OR MY COMMUNITY. and now I am going to look for the pro naturopathic petition and sign it!!!

    • David

      Molly. Do you realize that naturopaths basically train from books. They see generally healthy people in their training. One naturopath student on here admitted that a chiropractor teaches the cardiology portion of their training in naturopathy school. Is that who you want listening g to your 90 year old mothers heart? A naturopath would have no ability to distinguish abnormal heart sounds nor distinguish what is a normal variant versus pathological. Why do you feel it is ok ther a naturopathic Doctor is qualified to practice as a full service primary care doctor whereas an MD who graduates after four years of medical school is nowhere near to being ready (ie needs 3 more years of intense training).

      • Thomas Mohr

        Very true. My best friend is a dermatologist. Yesterday she was on duty at the hospital, emergency room. Due to her recent return from abroad she had to serve at a post usually done by MDs doing resiidency. In the afternoon alone she had two douzen patients where deep vein thrombosis was one possible diagnosis to exclude. I bet that NDs see such a patient maybe once a year. There is no way that NDs are equally trained compared to MDs.

        • has

          Even if they did recognize a DVT, what would they do to treat it? Altmed enthusiastically offers as many One True Cures as One True Causes for afficionados to choose from – and zero desire or interest in sorting one from another, no matter how mutually contradictory they all might be. Patients might as well spin a Wheel of Fortune for all the difference it’d make. Frankly the only thing NDs and other alt-medders are really qualified to treat are special needy snowflake egos in need of a great big hug. And even then they don’t seem to provide an actual cure; presumably selling an endless stream of return visits is much more profitableholistic.

      • Molly Anderson

        I never said my mom had cardiology issues. Way to project… however, my brothers cardiologist works with an ND in our area and he an MD said she was extremely good. And I don’t give a flying rats A** what any of you think because my mom and my husband are out of pain for the first time in decades… so until you are affected… until your world is ravaged by debilitating pain… and you get relief. YOU HAVE NO SAY. ZEEEEERO. Here in Washington, ND’s help people everyday. EVERYDAY. you believe in the medicine that has the most money to legislate and get approval… PA’s are perfect examples. one year of clinics? seriously? Cancer treatments Centers of America a HUGE hospital in AZ, has ND’s on staff. success is not based on Britt’s “competitive” residency. She couldn’t make it, so therefore instead she attacks the medicine. Again. until it affects you and your body, you will never get it. MD’s do not have the ONLY training that will help. and they have been known to be wrong… I know shocking. Look at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ignaz_Semmelweis.
        His hypothesis was INVISIBLE GERMS” man died in a mental hospital ridiculed by his MD PEERS. oh, ya and he was correct…. not all ND’s are bad and practice bad medicine and not all MD medicine is the be end all and ONLY path to good medicine. This is nothing more than a TROLL web-site. you all speak of things you know nothing about. Ive seem diabetes ELIMINATED, all meds gone, cholesterol down, meds gone… weight loss… excruciating GI issues, relieved and GONE, years of pain GONE… ALL MD’s had to offer was another med, on top of the masses my husband was already on…. The ND? yea, here is a novel idea, lets find the cause and treat the symptoms as we find the cause. None of you get it because none of you have ever lost your life, ended up in debilitating pain. I GUARANTEE you if that happens and an ND helps you… this argument will be OVER for you. like it is with me. peace out. i’m not engaging in crazy. This is my stop to get off the crazy train….

        • Thomas Mohr

          Molly,

          This is not about how good a particular ND is or how well your relatives feel. This is about letting lose a bunch of people with vastly inferior education onto the public.

          In the NPLEX exam there are cases presented of people where something is obviously wrong, among them a woman wihere diabetes is a possible diagnosis. The answer how to treat them is Qi strengthening treatments. Would you have one of your relatives wanted to be treated in such a way, thus endangering his health ?

          Second, Ignaz Semmelweis is very bad example. Science has progressed a lot since his days and most naturopathic treatments are proven not to work.

          Finally, the Cancer Treatment Center of America is NOT a good example either. They had serious problems with the FDA regarding their statistics as well as their study ethics.

        • Thomas Mohr

          Molly,

          This is not about how good a particular ND is or how well your relatives feel. This is about letting lose a bunch of people with vastly inferior education onto the public.

          In the NPLEX exam there are cases presented of people where something is obviously wrong, among them a woman wihere diabetes is a possible diagnosis. The answer how to treat them is Qi strengthening treatments. Would you have one of your relatives wanted to be treated in such a way, thus endangering his health ?

          Second, Ignaz Semmelweis is very bad example. Science has progressed a lot since his days and most naturopathic treatments are proven not to work.

          Finally, the Cancer Treatment Center of America is NOT a good example either. They had serious problems with the FDA regarding their statistics as well as their study ethics.

        • Petticoat Philosopher

          I never said my mom had cardiology issues. Way to project…

          Or “way to cite a stock example, as people commonly do in writing.” Sheesh

          so until you are affected… until your world is ravaged by debilitating pain… and you get relief. YOU HAVE NO SAY. ZEEEEERO.

          YOU KNOW NOTHING ABOUT THE MEDICAL HISTORIES OF ANYONE ELSE COMMENTING. (See, I can write in all-caps too. Doesn’t it make me so much more convincing?)

          success is not based on Britt’s “competitive” residency. She couldn’t make it, so therefore instead she attacks the medicine.

          What is success based on? What are you basing your conclusion that Britt is an embittered failure on? Is it just that that must be true or you might have to deal with the damning fact that someone who was a “success” in that system rejected it and is criticizing it? Or do you have actual evidence here?

          His hypothesis was INVISIBLE GERMS” man died in a mental hospital ridiculed by his MD PEERS. oh, ya and he was correct….

          Which we know because germ theory is backed by mountains of evidence. The same cannot be said of naturopathic treatments.

      • Molly Anderson

        I never said my mom had cardiology issues. Way to project… however, my brothers cardiologist works with an ND in our area and he an MD said she was extremely good. And I don’t give a flying rats A** what any of you think because my mom and my husband are out of pain for the first time in decades… so until you are affected… until your world is ravaged by debilitating pain… and you get relief. YOU HAVE NO SAY. ZEEEEERO. Here in Washington, ND’s help people everyday. EVERYDAY. you believe in the medicine that has the most money to legislate and get approval… PA’s are perfect examples. one year of clinics? seriously? Cancer treatments Centers of America a HUGE hospital in AZ, has ND’s on staff. success is not based on Britt’s “competitive” residency. She couldn’t make it, so therefore instead she attacks the medicine. Again. until it affects you and your body, you will never get it. MD’s do not have the ONLY training that will help. and they have been known to be wrong… I know shocking. Look at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ignaz_Semmelweis.
        His hypothesis was INVISIBLE GERMS” man died in a mental hospital ridiculed by his MD PEERS. oh, ya and he was correct…. not all ND’s are bad and practice bad medicine and not all MD medicine is the be end all and ONLY path to good medicine. This is nothing more than a TROLL web-site. you all speak of things you know nothing about. Ive seem diabetes ELIMINATED, all meds gone, cholesterol down, meds gone… weight loss… excruciating GI issues, relieved and GONE, years of pain GONE… ALL MD’s had to offer was another med, on top of the masses my husband was already on…. The ND? yea, here is a novel idea, lets find the cause and treat the symptoms as we find the cause. None of you get it because none of you have ever lost your life, ended up in debilitating pain. I GUARANTEE you if that happens and an ND helps you… this argument will be OVER for you. like it is with me. peace out. i’m not engaging in crazy. This is my stop to get off the crazy train….

    • has

      SpokenScreeched like a true Religious Believer. Long on zealotry and personal attack, and not a concrete fact in sight. Delightful.

    • Petticoat Philosopher

      It sounds like she was quite successful, actually. She did a competitive residency, which is more than most naturopaths do and she was gainfully employed in her profession for as long as she wanted to be. All evidence indicates that long-term success would have been hers if her conscience hadn’t gotten in the way. This argument is petty, baseless, and just plain silly and it makes the people who wield it–and the seem to show up in the comments regularly–look all the more desperate.

  • Molly Anderson

    Those of you who say you saw a “naturopath” or read about what “naturopaths”do… let us be clear on terms. Naturopaths in unlicensed states are NOT naturopathic doctors. The states that license Naturopathic doctors regulate the education, continuing education and in Washington Hawaii and other licensed states the DEA number for script writing. You think the state of Washington goes… oh hey, you have a bogus doctorate… let me give you prescription writing privileges. Pa-lease people. There are tests to pass and regulations to be met. NO one thinks twice about a P.A who has one year of science classes and then one year of routine clinical skills…. then TaDa i’m licensed to see patients and write prescriptions. yes, because of the tests that they pass to gain that privilege. and this degree takes exact same amount of time as a community college AA in nursing and nurses with an AA can’t see patients, write scripts, order tests…. The states regulate and test for such privileges. and the Naturopathic doctors who have these privileges have earned them according to the LAW. Naturopathic Medicine is respected at Virginia Mason, Swedish and Group Health to name a few of the largest hospitals on the West coast. Naturopathic Medicine has a place in medicine. I don’t like spicy foods. it doesn’t sit well with me. But that doesn’t give me the right to tell everybody spicy foods should be eliminated and removed from ANY and ALL food choices. and pointing out the dangers of spicy foods for someone with ulcers and using that platform that spicy foods are bad for EVERYONE is again ridiculous. Every medical provider needs to work within their scope of practice. And lets be clear about something else. Bastyr is NOT anti vaccine… you should keep up on your research BRITT. times change medicine evolves… that is why we call it the “practice of medicine”. I’ve seen a naturopathic pediatrician and guess what? She gave the vaccines right their in her office.. WHAT???? yea, it called medicine. and here is a kicker I’ve been told by an MD pediatrician that he did not vaccinate his kids. that he was waiting until five when immunity system was healthier. What??? an MD with an opinion on vaccines??? there are differing opinions among the MD community on how and when and why to treat MANY things. One naturopathic doctor does not represent them all. Just like one MD does not represent them all.

    • Thomas Mohr

      First, medicine is by definition the sum of treatments that work for a disease. Second, did you look at the NPLEX test ? Or the academic credentials of naturopathic schools ? Have you compared the education of MDs and NDS ? It is a desaster. For instance your pediatrician. She likely had no residency, An MD pediatrician otoh had years of residency. As for naturopathic medicine having a place in medicine. Many treatments have no place in medicine. Why ? Because they do not work or work only very weakly.

    • Louise Johnson

      Well Molly, right out of the box you’re wrong–the lobbying for
      licensure in each state indicates there are naturopathic doctors
      there, and that they have little regard for the law. And by the way,
      the state isn’t unlicensed, the naturopaths are and should be
      prosecuted for practicing medicine without a license. Pizorrno had great political connections, and it still took more than 16 years of lobbying for Bastyr to get accredited. And, accreditation says nothing about the quality of education, it means your bookeeping is in order and you have an adequate number of restrooms.

      Bastyr receives big donations from supplement manufacturers–do you think the state of Washington doesn’t
      want some of their tax money? On the other hand, do you think insurance companies want to pay for naturopathic “medicine,” when studies in Oregon (which are well written, large, random controlled studies) have shown it costs 4% more?

      The tests you pass are written by naturopaths and have not been verified by any independent review–you are required to pass a section of homeopathy–hahahaha, “lets see, should I prescribe water, or should I prescribe sugar pills?”

      The states don’t test for skills, they rubber stamp the tests that
      are written by naturopaths for naturopaths. (And yes, I understand the distinction you try to make between naturopaths and naturopathic”doctors”. Since both are trained in applied woo, (wet socks anyone?) it hardly matters–both studyunicorn poo.

      Did the naturopath who gave vaccines right there in her office
      offer vaccine “counseling”? Did she recommend following the CDC schedule, and if not, did she have any evidence that there was a reason not to? Its enough of a rarity for naturopathic “doctors” that those who do support them are repeatedly asked to justify them.

      Britt is speaking to you, she’s shining a spotlight on your education inadequate education.

    • PrimaryCareDoc

      That PA who had one year of science and one year of clinical is not being set lose to practice without supervision the way an ND is. The “A” in PA stands for “assistant.”

  • beet10 .

    Britt Hermes. Thanks so much for the great work you do in calling out “naturopathy” for the grab-bag of pseudoscience that it is. Please keep on stating the facts, documenting them so well, and presenting it all with such compelling style and wit.

  • Amor DeCosmos

    I cannot thank you enough for the work you are doing. You are honest and hard working and the results show. Keep slamming these delusional people with facts, we may wear them down eventually.

    Oh, and thanks for not calling yourself “the anti-Naturopath Babe” or something. 😉

  • Virtual Blue

    Just want to say I have the utmost respect for you and what you are doing.