six principles of naturopathic medicine form the backbone of my
philosophy. Those basic tenets discussed in Understanding Naturopathic
Medicine are what spoke to me when I decided to study naturopathy
formally in 1992 while still an undergraduate student at Earlham
College, in Richmond, Indiana. I had suffered from eczema since
birth and was disillusioned with the standard treatment option (cortisone)
by the time I was in high school. Nothing seemed to permanently
ease the symptoms and beyond this, they only seemed to be getting
worse! At 17, I began seeing an herbalist, which spawned my interest
in herbs and various natural therapies. I was enthralled to learn
that there were alternatives to my severely dry and itchy skin,
as well as the useless steroid creams. I realized there was more
to my chronic skin problem than an expectation for it to go away
with a suppressive cream-or even changing my diet. My quest for
vitality and health had begun.
In college at Earlham, I began as an anthropology
major, which allowed me to study various medical paradigms. In my
junior year, I traveled to Kenya, Africa where I conducted an ethnographic
study on traditional and botanical medicine. This research made
it obvious to me that I wanted to study the medicine itself –
not just the culture's methods and uses. I was fascinated that many
drugs in western medicine are discovered from original plant sources.
My awareness of the negative effects that often come with the use
of these drugs led me to question their long term safety, or even
a possible contribution to chronic disease.
Upon returning from Africa, I was left with the question
"Why not just use the herb itself?" I understood that
herbs were naturally balancing but I couldn't explain why. I wanted
to be able to scientifically explain why it would be safer and smarter
to use a whole herb, as opposed to the isolated components used
in commercial drugs. I changed my major to biology to begin finding
answers to my questions and proof for my theories. Earlham's amazing
Biology department helped prepare me for the next level of educational
endeavors: naturopathic medical school.
the National College of Naturopathic Medicine, I found a graduate
program that matched my passion and I immediately enrolled to further
my studies. I spent several years working on my own health, finally
fully understanding what contributed to my skin problems. I would
be far less healthy today had I not found these paths to follow.
I am committed to the work of helping others achieve health and
vitality in their own lives. Whether a person needs help with a
chronic illness or is simply interested in health maintenance and
optimization, I believe naturopathy is the means to reach those
Liz Cavin comes to Options Naturopathic Clinic with a diverse background
in natural health care. Naturopathic medicine, homeopathy, Ayurveda
and massage therapy contribute to her growing experience in working
with patients from an holistic perspective, all of which she has
used to aid the healing process with great success.
During her graduate education at
the National College of Naturopathic Medicine (NCNM), Dr. Cavin
also studied "Biotherapeutic Drainage", or what may be
more familiar as the Unda numbers and the European method of homeopathy
Dr. Holston Singh uses with her patients. Dr. Cavin decided to join
Dr. Holston Singh's practice to gain more experience in this regard.
Prior to her naturopathic medical
training, Dr. Cavin practiced as a licensed massage therapist for
ten years after studying massage at the Scherer Institute of Natural
Healing in Santa Fe, New Mexico. While living in New Mexico, Dr.
Cavin studied botanical medicine with Tiearona LowDog, MD. Botanical
medicine is one of her passions, and being able to identify medicinal
plants while hiking provides immense satisfaction.
Ayurvedic medicine, the traditional
medicine of India is another interest of Dr. Cavin's. She completed
a three hundred hour course at the Ayurvedic Institute and worked
there for several years after completing her course work.