What is naturopathic medicine?

Naturopathic medicine is a form of medicine that utilizes both conventional medical sciences as well as traditional healing systems. Naturopathic doctors (NDs) believe that our bodies have an innate healing ability which can be strengthened by giving proper support.

Naturopathic medicine addresses the cause of illnesses, both acute and chronic. The goal is to help you live your best life, in body, mind, and spirit. To do this we work together with you so that you can get healthy and stay healthy in a way that resonates with your life. Patients are viewed and treated as unique individuals, so no two treatment plans look alike.

The core values of Naturopathic medicine are well described by our six principles.

6 Principles of Naturopathic Medicine

The Healing Power of Nature (Vis Medicatrix Naturae)

  • There is an innate self-healing process within each of us and by accessing this inner intelligence our bodies recover and heal. Naturopathic physicians help to identify and remove obstacles in this healing process, and provide the necessary tools for the body to heal.

First Do No Harm (Primum Non Nocere)

  • A naturopathic physician avoids harm to the patient above all else. Therefore, a naturopathic doctor utilizes medicines and methods that have minimal risk of side effects, employing the least force necessary to treat the patient. Additionally, they avoid harmful symptom suppression, and work with respect and acknowledgement of the individual’s unique self-healing process.

Identify and Treat the Causes (Tolle Causam)

  • Rather than simply treat or suppress symptoms, a naturopathic physician seeks to identify the root cause of illness and remove it. In doing this, true healing can occur.

Doctor as Teacher (Docere)

  • Educating patients encourages an understanding of and personal responsibility in their health journey. Naturopathic physicians teach their patients about their bodies and health conditions so that the patient is empowered and feels equal in the doctor-patient relationship.

Treat the Whole Person

  • Human beings are more than their individual parts, and health involves harmony in all aspects of physical, mental, and emotional being. Therefore, naturopathic physicians consider all aspects of an individual, such as their physical, mental, emotional, social, environmental, and genetic health.


  • Prevention is a cornerstone in naturopathic medical care. By assessing risk factors, evaluating heredity factors, and determining susceptibility to disease, naturopathic physicians can partner with their patients to make appropriate interventions to prevent illness.

Naturopathic Treatment

NDs aim to empower patients to take control of their health and make lifestyle changes that will have a positive impact on their overall health and wellness.

Treatment may include a combination of conventional and natural therapies, such as:

  • Botanical Medicine
  • Dietary & Nutritional Guidance
  • Physical Medicine
  • Lifestyle Counseling
  • Medications
  • Nutritional Supplements
  • Mental Health Counseling

Whole Person, Comprehensive Care

Naturopathic medicine approaches health and wellness through the lens of comprehensive whole person health. Rather than looking at isolated systems (ie. gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, respiratory, etc) separate from one another, in their treatment of health conditions naturopathic doctors consider how these systems influence one another.


Naturopathic doctors are often referred to as preventative medicine doctors, because they work with you to not only address current illnesses, both acute and chronic, but also to prevent the development of illness.

Therapeutic Order

The treatment approach is guided by the therapeutic order, employing the least invasive treatments first, moving to higher order treatments accordingly. In understanding the naturopathic principles and therapeutic order, how naturopathic medicine deviates from allopathic medicine becomes clear.

The application of the naturopathic principles can be seen in the therapeutic order.


We work from the bottom up, starting with foundational health.

Remove obstacles to health, stimulate self-healing mechanisms, strengthen weakened or damaged systems, correct structural integrity, address pathology and symptoms with natural therapies, when necessary use pharmaceuticals and synthetic substances to stop pathology, use high force invasive therapies to suppress pathology when necessary.

Naturopathic Doctor Training

Naturopathic doctors attend a 4 year graduate program at an accredited medical institution and pass two rounds of comprehensive medical licensure exams (NPLEX 1 & 2). NDs are trained extensively in conventional medical sciences and the use of the associated diagnostic testing and treatments, such as medications, minor office procedures, injections, and more. They are also highly trained in traditional healing modalities such as botanical medicine, physical medicine, lifestyle changes, nutrition, and counseling. Therefore, the use of natural remedies and healing modalities are often employed alongside medications and other “high force” interventions.