Why a Naturopathic Doctor?

Posted by Tyler J. Arsenault B.Sc (Nutrition) on 2017 Nov 10th

Naturopathic Doctors (NDs) are primary health care practitioners. That is to say; they can treat the same conditions as a family doctor and are upheld to very high standard by governing bodies. While their diagnosis process is very similar to a conventional medical doctor, their treatment methods diverge significantly. Whereas a conventional doctor uses prescription drugs and surgeries to treat disease, a naturopathic doctor is interested in promoting wellness though diet and lifestyle counselling, nutrition therapy, botanical medicine and possibly acupuncture.

NDs practicing in Ontario have completed a minimum of 7 years of post-secondary education and rigorous entry exams prior to registration. They are required to have a minimum of 3 years of premedical studies at an accredited University at which point they are required to complete a 4 year full time program that includes over 4,500 hours of classroom training and 1,500 hours of supervised clinical experience. Finally they have to complete NPLEX examinations and maintain a constant enrollment in continuing education. NDs are arguably the most intensely trained medical professionals in Ontario for these reasons.


Since July 2015, NDs in Ontario have been regulated by the College of Naturopaths of Ontario and join other primary colleagues regulated in Ontario under the Regulated Health Professions Act.