What is a Naturopathic Doctor?

Our Practice, principles, & approach

Naturopathic doctors are primary care practitioners who practice the art and science of diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease using natural therapies.

Naturopathic Medicine

Naturopathic medicine is a distinct primary healthcare system that blends modern scientific knowledge with traditional and natural forms of medicine. Natural therapies include botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, hydrotherapy, homeopathy, naturopathic manipulation, traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture, and lifestyle counselling.

Integrative Health Care

Naturopathic doctors also complement and enhance healthcare services provided by other professionals through cooperation and referrals for diagnosis or treatment when appropriate. Naturopathic doctors provide patients with a truly integrative form of health care.

The practice of naturopathic medicine is based on six principles

  1. First, Do No Harm: Naturopathic doctors use gentle yet effective treatments that have minimal risk of side effects.
  2. The Healing Power of Nature: Naturopathic doctors recognize that the body has self-regulating and self-healing capabilities. A naturopathic doctor’s role is to assist and support this inherent healing ability of the body through the safest and most effective means possible.
  3. Remove the Cause:  Just as a finger with a splinter in it can never heal properly until the splinter is removed, an illness will remain in some form until its cause is removed. Causes can include nutritional, lifestyle, metabolic, genetic, infectious, mental, emotional, and social factors, as well as injury.
  4. The Doctor as Teacher: The word "doctor" comes from the latin word "docere", which means “to teach”. Naturopathic doctors take time to identify and teach patients the information and skills they need to regain and maintain their health.
  5. Treat the Whole Person: Naturopathic medicine recognizes and addresses the fact that the whole body and the environment we live in are interrelated.
  6. Prevention: Prevention is the best medicine. Looking at lifestyle risk factors and genetic vulnerabilities allows naturopathic doctors to guide patients in taking a proactive role in preventing disease. Preventive medicine on the individual level is an essential component of naturopathic medicine’s broader goal of disease prevention within the greater community.
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Naturopathic doctors are extensively educated:

In Canada...

In Canada, naturopathic doctors are primary care practitioners with training comparable to conventional doctors in the areas of diagnostic testing, physical examination, pharmaceuticals, differential diagnosis, and more.

Naturopathic doctors are extensively educated in the medical application of botanical medicine, clinical nutrition, homeopathy, and other natural healing modalities.

In Nova Scotia...

A licensed naturopathic doctor practicing in Nova Scotia: 

  • Has graduated from an accredited school
  • Has written and passed standardized North American Naturopathic Licensing Exams (NPLEX I, NPLEX II)
  • Is a member of NSAND and CAND



Naturopathic doctors are trained in several natural treatment methods which they utilize to help their patients regain and maintain optimal health.


After an in-depth health evaluation, your naturopathic doctor will design a treatment plan individualized to you and your specific health concerns.


Your naturopathic doctor may treat you with a combination of treatment modalities in order to most effectively optimize your health.