Her name means starâ??and thatâ??s what she is. Nigma Sciortino brightens the lives of thousands. Just ask the patients she treats, the people who listen to her natural healing advice over the radio, and those who attend her many free community health education events.
Her name means star-and that's what she is.
Nigma Sciortino brightens the lives of thousands. Just ask the patients she treats, the people who listen to her natural healing advice over the radio, and those who attend her many free community health education events. With a radiant personality to match the glow of her physical beauty and intelligence, Dr. Sciortino has what it takes to be both a healer and a teacher.
It began when she was a little girl. "Even when I was very young, I wanted to help others; I would always see to the needs of the elders in the mosque. My friends came to me with their problems and I would counsel them. Caring for people came very naturally to me."
Nigma, who is 34 (but looks 22), recalls her East Indian grandmother treating her childhood illnesses with traditional medicines. A bright yellow concoction of turmeric mixed with honey was her grandmother's remedy for coughs. "Even with the honey, you could taste the bitterness of the turmeric," laughs Nigma. "But it worked! And now we know why. Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory that soothes the bronchial tract."
East Meets West
After graduating from Simon Fraser University, Nigma traveled to India. Her life-changing experiences with traditional Indian healers helped set her on her life's path. Combined with her desire to care for others, she realized she was also dedicated to teaching people to care for themselves.
"I considered training to become a medical doctor, but naturopathic medicine held far more appeal for me. The biggest difference is that, as an ND, I am trained to get to the root cause of a problem. I think of myself as a 'biochemical detective.'"
Treatments as Unique as We are
Dr. Nigma, as she prefers to be called, has been practicing her specialized form of healing for five years. Her clinic, the West Vancouver Wellness Centre in West Vancouver, British Columbia, is a bustling practice with two other naturopathic doctors. Using a variety of diagnostic tools and techniques, the clinic has created a personalized approach to individual health care.
"No two people are the same, yet Western medicine treats them as if they are. With a specialized blood test that reads genetic differences, called single nucleotide polymorphism or SNP [pronounced] for short, we are able to custom design treatment programs based on the unique genetic makeup of that individual."
Dr. Nigma explains more about this revolutionary approach. "Individual gene variations determine so much about our health, how we develop diseases, and how we will respond to treatment. Empowered with this information, we can better understand the problem. And that means we can better design the solution."
As part of the alive magazine makeover project, Dr. Nigma generously volunteered her professional medical services to participants Rob Klettke and Toni Hadgraft. Read about the alive makeover project.
Listen to Dr. Nigma on "The Good Life" radio show at tglshow.com. Read more about her clinic at healthydoc.com