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MAR / APR 2014
Healthcare Journal of LITTLE ROCK  
naturopathic medicine
This is one of the primary tenets of naturo-
pathic philosophy.
“We talk about obstacles to cure,” says
Dr. Hickman. “If you find obstacles that this
person has either with their health or with
their environment, if you take those away,
and then just let the body do its own thing,
you get much better results.”
Naturopathic practitioners believe in
the power and ability of the human body
to naturally heal itself when given the right
tools—tools which might not necessarily be
medication. They take the time to evaluate
their patients in areas of diet, exercise, stress,
work and home environments, allergies, and
so on, all with the intention of finding this
root problem and advising natural ways to
treat it. Another area of focus is the preven-
tion of health issues by identifying potential
factors for disease and taking action with
treatments that can prevent such an occur-
rence from ever happening.
Oftentimes, these are treatments that the
patients themselves have control over—such
as restricting certain foods from their diets,
drinking more water or taking certain vita-
min or herbal supplements—and this method
appears to have a special effect on patients.
“It empowers the patient, and they control
their own health,” says Dr. Hickman. “A lot of
times patients feel like they don’t have any
say over their healthcare. They just have to
go in and do exactly what the doctor says.
They don’t understand what’s going on with
them. And so whenever someone doesn’t
have control over their own healthcare, you
don’t seem to have the same outcome.”
According to naturopathic philosophy,
when you allow patients to treat the root
cause of their diseases and to contribute to
their own healing processes, it is not only
empowering, but it is valuable education in
proper care for themselves in their every-
day lives.
“It’s that old adage: give a guy a fish, feed
him for a day. Teach him how to fish, feed
him for a lifetime. That really is the under-
lying precept for naturopathic doctors,”
says executive director of the Association
Fayetteville naturopathic practitioner Dr.
Tara Hickman, ND, is a graduate of the
accredited Southwest College of Naturo-
pathic Medicine in Tempe, Ariz., and is a
naturopathic license-holder in the state of
Arizona. She defines naturopathic medicine
as, “a different way of viewing the patient,
looking at them more from an individual
perspective and trying to identify underly-
ing causes for their illness rather than just
treating the symptoms.”
While treating the symptoms of a disease
is important, particularly in the short term,
long-term care often depends on identifying
the root of the problem for that individual
patient and treating the root issue as well.
Tara Hickman, ND
JoAnn Yanez, ND, MPH