"I’m a surgeon and I had been struggling with hives for about six months. The itching wasn’t too bad, but I can’t have swollen hands in the operating room or swollen feet while I’m out walking the hospital on call. I had been seeing conventional care providers who prescribed steroids and other pharmaceuticals with potentially serious side effects, but the condition kept getting worse.
"I asked a family friend, a Bastyr University graduate practicing on Long Island, about naturopathic options. He suggested making an appointment at Bastyr Center. I met with Dr. Wallace and two student clinicians, who were wonderful. They took a very thorough history and evaluation. I didn’t feel rushed, which isn’t always the case in today’s health care system. They acted like I was important to them and took time answering my questions.
"They suggested two things: a natural powder made from onion root, to take twice a day, and an anti-inflammatory diet. The diet mostly avoids gluten and dairy and emphasizes more organic foods. Things began to dramatically improve. The hives are completely better now. It basically changed my life.
"This was my first experience with naturopathic medicine, and it was great. The clinicians couldn’t have been more pleasant or better supervised. I like that they gave a written version of our plan for help remembering it. They were helpful and realistic about making diet changes. I made the changes over the course of a week, and didn’t feel any changes except for feeling better. The best part is that I’m off medication.
"I’d encourage others to keep an open mind about natural medicine. If you’re working with conventional medicine and it’s not working, there are alternatives out there."