Playing Doctor: My Short Lived Career As A Naturopath
Earlier today my dreams were dashed.
It has nothing to do with Clooney (although I do LOVE this dreamy picture of him from his Dr. Ross days on ER) and everything to do with doctoring.
Admittedly, I have a long history of dodging doctors (inherited no doubt from my Mom who successfully avoided doctors for over thirty years before being hospitalized suddenly and later, diagnosed with sky high blood pressure and other ailments). Yet, at the same time, I have also come to consider myself something of an expert about holistic health and medicine, including everything from exercise to eating to supplements. A sorta self-taught ND or Naturopathic Doctor.
My credentials? Nothing official, but over the past 4-5 years, I have shopped for groceries and supplements almost exclusively at Whole Foods. That's gotta count for something! I've also spent a substantial amount of time reading health and wellness articles via the Facebook pages of Food Inc, Juice Press and Gwyneth Paltrow's (much maligned) Goop. Now, factor in that 2 day seminar with a NMD (Naturopathic Medical Doctor) from Arizona last year at Body Kneads Yoga as well as almost daily Bikram classes at Boiler House Bikram.
Earlier today, I visited an honest to goodness ND in Providence and was surprised by much of what I learned. Quite the lightbulb moment.
Most important thing? I learned that every single supplement I am (or, should I say, WAS) taking is somehow wrong - It's either the correct supplement in the wrong dose or something I don't need to be taking at all. Serves me right. That's what I get for formulating my own supplement regimen based on recommendations from the people who staff the vitamin section at Whole Foods and some online articles written by who knows who. #NotSmart
What I was doing - although I didn't realize it at the time - was wasting lots of money on pricey vitamins and other supplements that were doing absolutely nothing for me. It could have been much, much worse though - I could have damaged my system by taking the wrong vitamins. In retrospect, I was lucky I didn't.
As a result, I highly recommend meeting with a trained and certified professional in the field of nutrition or medicine before going off and (like me) playing doctor for yourself or anyone else. Not only is it potentially dangerous, but it's also wasteful. I mean do you realize all the other stuff I could have bought with the money I wasted on those vitamins and supplements?