Select Page

The Process of Healing

by Apr 6, 2018

Home » Naturopathic Medicine Student Blog » The Process of Healing

I haven’t blogged much about naturopathic philosophy, yet we review it over and over again in both Phase I and Phase II of the program. The process of healing came up the other day when I was treating a patient, and that inspired me to write this blog post!

The Process of Healing flowchart was made by Dr. Jared Zeff, ND, and it describes how the body is constantly adapting and trying to maintain a healthy state.

2018-04-06_mary_infographic  Source:

Health is constantly being thrown off kilter by imbalances in the determinants of health which cause disturbance of functions. The determinants of health are things like nutrition, hydration, sunlight, fresh air, supportive relationships, exercise, etc. Signs and symptoms are compensatory responses that are indicative of disturbances in the determinants of health. They should not be suppressed or covered up — they are signals trying to alert you that something needs to change!  

The compensatory responses can resolve through a discharge that restores health, or if the imbalance in the determinants isn’t corrected, a chronic reaction results. From the chronic reaction state, you can either move back into a compensatory response (and then hopefully discharge and health), or a degeneration of function or tissue.

The process of healing is fundamental to the success of naturopathic medicine. Many patients who seek out naturopathic medicine have chronic conditions that seem to be “managed” by conventional medicine, but patients want to restore health and not have to deal with the condition forever! Understanding that the imbalances in the determinants of health are what is driving the compensatory responses, and thus the chronic reaction allows us to find and remove the root causes of the condition. 

Follow NUHS on Social Media

About the Author

Mary Simon

Mary Simon

I'm a naturopathic medical student at NUHS. I started the Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine Program in January 2014. I was born and raised in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, a beautiful town on Lake Michigan. My experiences interpreting (Spanish to English) in nearly all medical specialties solidified my decision to study naturopathic medicine, as I saw a deep need for treating the body as a whole, getting to the root causes of symptoms, and using minimally invasive low-cost therapies to restore health.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts

Wrapping Up Another Trimester During Spring

Wrapping Up Another Trimester During Spring

In the past couple of weeks, I have been trying to take advantage of small, daily opportunities to “stop and smell the roses” as the end of the trimester quickly approaches. This trimester has been particularly busy for me and acknowledging the “small things” has been...

read more
A Reflection on This Trimester’s Theme

A Reflection on This Trimester’s Theme

This trimester’s theme has been about discovering a sense of balance imposed upon a constantly-changing schedule. In fact, the balancing act started during my last break from school. Although I had no school, I spent my break reviewing for the NPLEX Part 1 exam in...

read more

Defining the future of integrated health care.