As you may know, it’s Naturopathic Medicine Week. In honor of this, Nutrafol has decided to celebrate some of our brilliant medical minds!
Here’s a Q&A with one of our resident Naturopathic Doctors, Dr. Melissa Anzelone. Melissa earned a biology degree from King’s College and a doctorate degree in Naturopathic medicine from the University of Bridgeport. In the six years Melissa has been in the Naturopathic medicine field, she’s exemplified her passion by helping patients balance their bodies & lives through gentle, therapeutic methods.
But enough from us – check out Melissa’s Q&A about being a Naturopathic Doctor, what makes Naturopathic medicine different, and the best methods to ensure your experience with Nutrafol is a successful one!
Nutrafol: First things first, Dr. Melissa, what IS a Naturopath?
Dr. Melissa: Great question! A Naturopathic Doctor is a medical professional trained in natural and integrative therapies. Think of it as combining the wisdom of nature with modern science. Steeped in traditional healing methods and principles, Naturopathic Doctors focus on holistic and proactive disease prevention. By using protocols that minimize the risk of harm, Naturopathic Doctors help facilitate the body’s inherent ability to restore and maintain optimal health. Most importantly, Naturopathic Doctors serve to identify and remove barriers to good health by helping to create an environment that is healing internally and externally.
NF: So…kind of like a doctor of eastern medicine?
Dr. Melissa: That’s partially correct. Eastern Medicine is also known as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This modality originated in ancient China and has evolved over thousands of years. TCM providers use herbal medicines and various mind/body practices. I’m sure you’ve heard of acupuncture, which is a way to manage or prevent health problems.
Naturopathic Doctors, on the other hand, employ many modalities including homeopathy, botanical medicine, nutritional supplementation, physical medicine, diet/lifestyle modification and hydrotherapy. In addition to this, some Naturopathic Doctors hold an acupuncture license which allows them to use TCM herbs and acupuncture.
NF: What role do plants and nutraceuticals play in your practice?
Dr. Melissa: A HUGE role! It’s important to note that not all vitamins and plants are created equal. Naturopathic Doctors only use high quality supplements from trusted sources to ensure efficacy of the remedy. Nutraceuticals – aka vitamins and plants – are substances that have physiological benefit or provide protection against chronic disease. They may also be used to improve health, delay the aging process, prevent chronic disease, or support the structure or function of the body. Naturopathic Doctors can use these powerful remedies to manage anything from acid reflux to improving hair health!
NF: What’s the most common trigger you see causing hair loss that people can possibly fix themselves through lifestyle changes?
Dr. Melissa: Stress and digestive function are the most common triggers for hair loss. Stress can cause our digestion and absorption to decrease, so much so that our stress hormone tells our digestive system to stop working! Stress management is a tricky trigger to manage, but with professional coaching people can learn to reduce their stress response to the things that once “drove them crazy”, and practice long-term resilience habits. It’s all about putting positive psychology techniques into action.
Another technique is to develop a practice of mindful eating, including eating when our bodies tell us to eat and eating with others at set times and places. When our digestive function is optimal, we are able to absorb the nutrients and proteins needed to build beautiful hair.
Yoga and exercise are also amazing to control stress.
NF: Can you tell us a little about the Hair Mineral Analyses we offer here at Nutrafol?
Dr. Melissa: Our Hair Mineral Analysis (HMA) provides a detailed examination of the various elements of your hair via advanced ICP Mass Spectrometry technology. After measuring your body’s levels of over 60 essential minerals and toxic metals, our hair health experts construct a comprehensive metabolic profile of your body. They then walk you through your results and make personalized recommendations geared towards optimizing your growth process.
NF: How important is a holistic lifestyle to promoting hair growth?
Dr. Melissa: A holistic lifestyle is KEY to promoting hair growth! Balancing a healthy whole foods diet with at least 7 hours of sleep per night, as well as managing your stress sets the stage for healthy hair growth.
NF: Anything else we should know, Dr. Melissa?
Dr. Melissa: Our medical team is here to support you with any questions you have. We got into the business of hair health to help people. We want to see you successful on our product! We are here as a partner in progress throughout this journey to troubleshoot any problems you have and celebrate all successes.