My research project led me to look into integrative medicine. As I was studying the benefits of exercise, I wondered what medical school integrated nutrition and fitness into their curriculum. Sadly, almost none. During this time, I found naturopathic medicine. While researching this profession, I came across other modalities or tools – besides nutrition, exercise, and pharmaceuticals – that doctors can use to help treat people. I began to question why conventional doctors don’t use these. For example, why did my mom’s doctor not recommend a more thorough nutrition plan, physical activity program, botanical medicine or acupuncture for diabetes? I never asked, but this led me to highly consider naturopathic medicine.
Naturopathic medicine resonated with me personally too. As a young child I was constantly going to the urgent care due to asthma, bronchitis, or pneumonia. When not in the clinic, or on medication, my family would use botanical medicine in the form of teas and a type of Amazonian honey. I was born in Venezuela, so this type of honey was often used by Amazon natives to treat people and readily available parts of the country. In a way, I felt like naturopathic medicine allowed me to get in touch with a forgotten culture of traditional medicine. While at the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine, I focused on learning another traditional forms of medicine – Acupuncture and TCM. Further studies include learning about botanical properties of the plants in the native Southwest USA.