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Training of a Naturopathic Doctor

The Healing Power of Nature/Do No Harm/Identify and Treat the Cause/

/Doctor as Teacher​/Treat the Whole Person/ Prevention


Naturopathic Doctors are trained much like your primary care physician, yet also learn tools and a philosophy of natural and functional medicine. Everything you would expect your family physician to do, they are expected to know and understand as well.


A Naturopathic Doctor is trained to:

  • Diagnose disease

  • Investigate the underlying cause

  • Understand conventional and naturopathic treatment options

  • Promote healing in the human body

  • Utilize other health care professionals

  • Provide integrative health care


Important Facts about ND Training – An overview:

  • Approximately 4,100 hours in total training

  • Wide range of biomedical science coursework

  • Physical exam diagnostic skills

  • Laboratory diagnosis covering both conventional and functional medicine testing

  • Wide range of clinical sciences coursework (i.e. neurology, urology, endocrinology, etc.)

  • A minimum of 1,200 hours of clinical training & direct patient care

  • Trained to understand and integrate conventional and alternative treatment options

  • Trained to assess and treat the underlying cause of disease

  • NDs sit for a series of Basic Science and Clinical Board Exams


In addition, Naturopathic Doctors study a variety of options to treat disease. These modalities include:


  • Nutrition

  • Botanical Medicine

  • Homeopathy

  • Structural Adjustment

  • Physiotherapy

  • Hydrotherapy

  • Intravenous (IV) therapy

  • Injection (IM) therapy

  • Acupuncture

  • Counseling

  • Pharmacology

  • Minor Surgery



While a naturopathic medicine program is very similar to a conventional medical school in structure, the perspective is very different. Naturopathic medical students learn to:

  • Integrate a comprehensive medical training

  • Understand how these various treatment modalities interact with the patient and their disease process

  • Strive for treating the cause over just treating symptoms



Naturopathic doctors are trained to understand how all of the above tools and skills come together to treat each patient in an individualized way in order to create the best long-term outcome: health.


For more information about naturopathic medical programs please visit the medical schools websites:


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