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Naturopathy in Canada FAQs

Are Naturopathic Doctors real Doctors?

Naturopathic Doctors are Primary Care Practitioners, so yes, they are real doctors.

Just like any other general practitioner, naturopaths have the power to requisition and interpret lab tests as well as sign-off on physical exams.

Naturopaths have been put through a 4-year professional medical program that is comparable to most allopathic medical schools.

Are Naturopathic Doctors Medical Doctors?

It depends on the province, but “Medical Doctor” is generally reserved for conventional doctors.

If you want to know when to see a medical doctor vs a naturopathic doctor, go here.

Are Naturopathic Doctors safe?

If you’re working with a licensed naturopathic doctor, they should be practicing safely, in accordance with their regulatory body.

Naturopathic treatment, such as supplementation, acupuncture, dietary advice, and counselling are non-invasive.

One of the most important pillars of Naturopathic Medicine is to ‘Do No Harm’

How does Naturopathy work?

The focus of naturopathic medicine is the understanding that the body has the ability to heal itself.

All organisms have a vitality; Naturopathic Medicine supports that vitality to not only heal people from disease, but to prevent disease in the future.

What do Naturopathic Doctors treat?

Naturopathic Doctors are primary health care practitioners with the ability to assess and treat most health concerns – from acute to chronic, from physical to psychological.

How do Naturopaths diagnose disease?

According to Dr. Christopher Maloney, ND:

“The training in pathology is the same as a conventional M.D. or D.O. But an N.D. is much less practiced in hospital level diagnosis and much more experienced in “subclinical” issues that can be missed by conventional doctors. Standard clinical labs will be done, although interpretation may differ.

If necessary, referral to conventional specialists will also happen. Generally, because of the more detailed labs done, thyroid disease, adrenal fatigue, metabolic syndrome, and hormonal imbalance are far more likely to be caught by an N.D. than a conventional doctor.”

Are Naturopathic Doctors worth it?

If you find the right doctor for your health conditions, they can be incredibly helpful in fixing the root cause of your condition.

Education is a large part of Naturopathic Medicine (Doctor as teacher); nothing is more empowering than knowledge.

Are Naturopathic Doctors licensed?

It depends. In some provinces, including Ontario and B.C., NDs have to be licensed to practice, but some provinces haven’t put these regulations into place – yet.

The list is growing, and eventually, it will likely be in all provinces. Naturopathic licensing in Ontario ensures there are regulations kept in place to provide safety for the public.

Are Naturopathic Doctors regulated in Ontario? B.C.? Other?

Are Naturopathic Doctors expensive?

If we look at Toronto naturopaths as an example, the average fee for your first visit is usually around $200, the second visit is often $100-$150, and subsequent visits are often less than $100.

It can feel expensive to spend that $200 upfront, but even that one session can make a large difference in a person’s perspective on their health.

Treatment protocols start on the first visit, as do any necessary lab requisitions. A good Naturopathic Doctor is a liaison to better health. They can best counsel you on how to use your money so that you don’t get cheated by the wrong practitioner.

3-4 visits per year end up being very affordable and worth the expense for most patients.

Are Naturopathic Doctors covered by insurance?

Naturopathic visits are usually covered by extended benefit plans but aren’t covered by the provincial healthcare system (e.g. OHIP) yet.

Can a Naturopath write prescriptions and antibiotics?

Each naturopathic doctor will choose if they want to become licensed to write prescriptions.

If that’s something you’re looking for, there are Naturopathic Doctors that have access to certain regulated prescriptions such as bio-identical hormones and desiccated thyroid.

Can a Naturopath order blood tests?

Yes, Naturopaths have nearly the same panel of lab tests to choose from as conventional doctors.

But lab work is an additional cost through a Naturopathic Doctor.

Often, there is the option of going to your conventional doctor, who can run the tests for free, but any blood tests ordered by the Naturopath will have an associated cost.

Can a Naturopath help with…

Can a Naturopath help with fertility?

Yes, they use a combination of nutritional and botanical medicine, hormonal approaches, autoimmune health, stress management, cycle charting, and acupuncture. More info here…

Can a Naturopath help with weight loss?

Naturopaths are actually very important for many people who aren’t able to lose weight with just dieting and exercise. For example, it’s often a hormonal issue that needs to be uncovered. More info here…

Can a Naturopath help with anxiety?

Yes. As a comparison, a psychiatrist may prescribe anxiety medicine, while a naturopath will prescribe herbs, supplements, counselling, and acupuncture. More info here…

Can a Naturopath help with acne? And eczema?

Yes, they’ll fix the root cause, including hormonal imbalances, toxic load, acne-causing diets, etc. More info here…

Can a Naturopath help with depression?

Yes, there are even naturopathic doctors who specialize in depression. Ideally, you’d combine some form of therapy/counselling with naturopathy to get the benefits of both of these worlds. Naturopaths who work with depression will often encourage this.

Can a Naturopath help with menopause?

Yes, there are many natural methods a naturopathic doctor might propose. For example, if you have an estrogen deficiency, a diet with phytoestrogens such as soy milk and flaxseed could be very helpful. More info here…

Can a Naturopath help with hypothyroidism?

Yes, naturopathy has tremendous success with hypothyroidism. Conventional doctors usually run only a TSH test, but it’s crucial to also run T3, T4, and thyroid antibodies to get the full picture. More info here…

Can a Naturopath help with hormonal issues?

Absolutely, NDs treat a lot of hormonal imbalances – Estrogen, Progesterone, Androgens, Cortisol, and others. More info here…