Naturopathic oncology providers are specialists who use natural, non-toxic therapies to support the whole person and encourage the self-healing process. Their goal is to minimize the risk of harmful effects from cancer treatments, and apply the gentlest intervention needed to restore your health.
Your naturopathic oncology provider at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) acts as a consultant to your oncologist to support normal metabolism and digestion during cancer treatment; manage any side effects, such as nausea or fatigue; and boost immune function.
As part of the intake process, you'll meet with your naturopathic oncology provider, who will review your history and make recommendations from a wide variety of natural therapies.
Throughout your treatment, your naturopathic oncology provider will suggest natural therapies to support your immune system and reduce any treatment-related side effects, including:
- Nutritional supplements and botanical medicines, including vitamins, minerals, amino acids and herbs.
- Natural therapies, such as garlic, ginger and salt water.
- Homeopathic remedies, mainly involving plant extracts and minerals that gently strengthen the body's healing and immune response.
- Physical therapy and exercise therapy, including massage and other gentle techniques used on deep muscles and joints for therapeutic purposes.
- Hydrotherapy, which prescribes water-based approaches like hot and cold wraps, steaming and other therapies.
- Lifestyle counseling. Many medical conditions can be treated with foods and nutritional supplements, with fewer complications and side effects.
- Acupuncture. Some of our naturopathic oncology providers also provide acupuncture therapies.
All of our naturopathic oncology providers have extensive knowledge of radiation, chemotherapy and other cancer treatments. They help guide your treatment plan and are in regular communication with the oncology team at CTCA. They also monitor your supplement and vitamin intake to ensure safety from potential drug-herb and drug-nutrient interactions.
The Naturopathic Medicine Department also provides an educational component as well. Programs include information about vitamin and mineral supplements, natural remedies, nutritional guidance, lifestyle changes, stress management techniques and strategies for long-term prevention of recurrence.
The naturopathic medicine team at Southwestern
Katherine Anderson, N.D., F.A.B.N.O., Chief of the Division of Naturopathic Medicine at CTCA, leads the naturopathic medicine team at CTCA at Southwestern Regional Medical Center (Southwestern). The team is comprised of experienced naturopathic clinicians, each with a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree from a doctoral-level program accredited by the Council on Naturopathic Medical Education.
The naturopathic team at Southwestern specializes in oncology. About half of the staff has completed a two-year specialized residency program in integrative naturopathic oncology. Some are also acupuncturists as well.
Low level energy laser therapy
The naturopathic medicine team at Southwestern provides Low Level Energy Laser Therapy to help minimize treatment-related side effects like peripheral neuropathy (numbness or tingling in the hands and feet, often caused by chemotherapy), pain, fatigue, lymphedema, mucositis (inflammation of the digestive tract, often caused by chemotherapy and radiation) and wound healing.