Views #618 | High Intermediate 6

Natural Medicine

Lucinda talks about using natural remedies to maintain health.

Todd: So, Lucinda, you have a very natural family, I mean they're really into nature and the environment.

Lucinda: Yeah, pretty much. I think they call us tree-huggers or whatever they call them now these days.

Todd: Oh, tree huggers! So, do you guys do anything special for like for being sick or anything like that?

Lucinda: Yeah, my autie is a naturalpath?

Todd: A naturalpath?

Lucinda: Yeah, I think that's a new word for, it used to be a homeopath.

Todd: Oh, I see, and what does naturalpath mean?

Lucinda: It basically means a person that is involved with natural medicine kind of like a doctor but with natural remedies instead of pharmacuetical medicine.

Todd: Right. OK, so let's assuming that I get a cold and I'm really sick. What would a natural-path give me?

Lucinda: Basically there is certain, well there is certain drugs that you would give a person that was, had a flu if you were a doctor and there would be a specific drug for that flu or they might just give you penecilin or something strong, with a natural-path they would give you a different range of remedies considering what exact symptoms you had, so they'd give you echinacea if you just had, if you were just feeling down.

Todd: I'm sorry. What's that called?

Lucinda: echinacea (echinacea) Yeah.

Todd: What is echinacea?

Lucinda: Ah, that is a, it's for your immune system. It gives you a boost, basically. If you're feeling kind of down or sick or you're just not very, have much energy.

Todd: Is it a plant?

Lucinda: It's, I think it's a type of a root.

Todd: Oh, I see

Lucinda: Yeah, it's a type of plant. They, it's crushed up and put into tablets, and you can actually, most people now take, not most people, but people that take echinacea now, they often, you can every day of your life.

Todd: Every day

Lucinda: Yeah. It's very popular in America.

Todd: And it makes you healthy?

Lucinda: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Todd: So, you're very young, so and assuming that some day, when you have your family, and if you have child that's sick, would you ever use Western medicine, or would you strictly use the natural-path way?

Lucinda: Well, actually, it depends on how sick the child is. I mean, whenever I was sick as a child, I'd go to the doctor, but it's not like I wouldn't give them Western medicine, but if they just had a small cold I would use natural medicines first but if it was anything serious I would give them, I would take them to the doctor definitely and use Western medicine.

Todd: Now your aunt who is a natural path, does she ever use Western medicine?

Lucinda: Oh, yes, yes. Every day people use this natural path medicine. I mean it's not for, you know natural medicine freaks or anything like that. It's everyday business people use their medicine. It's now very popular to be healthy and to eat, to have certain things in your diet that you should be eating and even such as health drink shakes, they sell them in stores such as Starbuck's now so that is actually a part of natural-path medicines, are those health food energy drinks that have protien powder and stuff.

Todd: OK, well sounds good.

Learn vocabulary from the lesson!


Because our family is really into nature, people called us tree-huggers.

People that really love the environment and are very concerned with protecting it are often called 'tree-huggers.' Notice the following:

  1. Hippie music was always really popular with the tree-huggers.
  2. Our nature group is really just a bunch of tree-huggers.


My auntie is a naturopath and is involved with natural medicine.

A 'naturopath' is a person who uses natural medicine and techniques to cure sicknesses, instead of modern medicine. Notice the following:

  1. Since the operation failed, he has been seeing a naturopath for his back problems.
  2. People depend more on naturopaths than modern doctors in Vietnam.

natural remedies

Being a naturopath, my auntie uses natural remedies for sickness instead of medicines.

'Natural remedies' are cures that do not involve modern medicine. Notice the following:

  1. My grandmother always has the best natural remedies.
  2. More people are looking for natural remedies to solve their medical problems now.

pharmaceutical medicine

A regular doctor would usually prescribe pharmaceutical medicine for any illness.

'Pharmaceutical medicine' is a kind of medicine that you can only get after a trip to a doctor. Notice the following:

  1. Some companies want to keep people using pharmaceutical medicine so they can make money.
  2. Pharmaceutical medicine is very expensive in some countries.

immune system

If you feel down or sick, my auntie would give you something to boost your immune system.

Your 'immune system' is what protects you from getting sick. It kills off harmful bacteria or germs that enter into your body. Notice the following:

  1. From the time she was a baby, she has always had a week immune system, and is always getting sick.
  2. Eating healthy foods and getting enough sleep will both keep your immune system strong.
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Vocabulary Quiz

tree-hugger • naturopath • remedies
pharmaceutical • immune
  1. As a nurse, she strongly believes in the powers of medicine.
  2. This is the time of year when you have to do everything you can to boost your system.
  3. Studying environmental ethics at university turning him into quite a .
  4. There is a whole section at the organic supermarket that is just for natural .
  5. Since she is a , she always has plenty of teas and lotions that she can give you to help with whatever problem you have.

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