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My Journey to Becoming a Naturopathic Doctor

Updated: Nov 12, 2023

Some of us know what we are meant to be before we have the words to describe it. I can hardly remember a time in my life where I didn’t want to help people. As I grew older I also discovered that science was fascinating (and I was really good at it) and that I could use it to explain the things I observed. Today I use my passion for people and science to think through biochemical and physiological processes, and to integrate naturopathic therapies to help patients achieve great health!

The thing is, my parents are what we might think of as “granola parents”, or naturopathically inclined. We had a garden, spent time in nature and went to physicians who practiced both conventional medicine and homeopathy. It was a rude awakening to me when I was finishing my pre-med classes at the University of Washington, that my idea of what a doctor did was not how most doctors practiced.

After graduating with my undergraduate degree, I deferred medical school and started working as a head-hunter for a group that found and hired physicians as expert witnesses,and to review clinical charts for insurance companies. I spoke to thousands of doctors offices over the course of 2 years and was certain that my decision not to be a doctor was correct. Or so I thought until I spoke to a Naturopathic Doctor in Idaho whom I was trying to hire...

While the details of that call are lost to time, I do remember thinking “that’s how medicine should be done.” Shortly after that I visited Bastyr University in Kenmore, WA, to check out their Naturopathic Medical program. I felt like I was going home the moment I drove on to the campus, and that I had found the place to practice medicine the way I knew it should be…

I have refined my clinical skills over the years, added in cool therapies and become fluent in medical lingo. Still, my core motivating factor in being a doctor is to help others. My style of practicing medicine is uniquely my own, a blend of conventional and functional medicine viewed through a commonsense lens. It has been informed by life experiences and the belief that we all deserve to live a healthy, happy life.

The four things that make my patients successful are:

I believe that if you listen to your patients, they will tell you what they need.

  1. Patients don’t fail treatments; treatments fail to be what’s appropriate for the patient.

  2. When a patient’s health is not improving with our treatments, we need to ask better questions to get to the root cause.

  3. I believe that everyone has the power to heal and live their best life…they just need a little support. (And who couldn’t use a little support in this world?)

I love this medicine and it has saved my life in so many ways. I hope to be a worthy ambassador spreading scientifically sound, highly effective therapies to my community.

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