I am an American-trained, licensed (Arizona, U.S.A.) and registered (U.K., GCRN) Naturopathic Doctor. I received my four-year, “pre-med” B.S. degree in Biology and Anthropology from Emory University. I then graduated Summa cum Laude from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine’s four-year medical school with a Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine in 2010. Then, I completed my residency at Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine. I now have a private practice in Oxfordshire, England, a tele-medicine practice for international patients, and an online wellness and weight-loss program called Slendever. I’m also a mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, neighbor, PTA member and volunteer. In my spare time, I enjoy gardening and making very bad art.
I became interested in Natural medicine at a young age. I’d spent most of my childhood on and off of antibiotics for chronic ear infections which we were told by my pediatrician “is just one of those things that some kids deal with– there isn’t much that we can do other than putting tubes in your ears to help them drain.” At that point, my dad thought that I should try his Naturopath/Chiropractor. Within 2 weeks of removing dairy from my diet, I never had another ear infection. As of that moment, there was no doubt in my mind that what you put into your mouth either promotes health or destroys it. There was also a dawning awareness in me that finding the root cause of the illness (in my case dairy causing inflammation in my eustachian tubes in my ears) rather than treating the symptoms (the infection that resulted from stagnant fluids not being able to drain freely from my ears) simply made more sense. In Naturopathic medicine this is known as “Tolle Causum” or Treat the Cause. I didn’t fully comprehend this then, of course, and staggered from one health issue to the next believing that the conventional wisdom had to be right. They were doctors who studied this in medical school after all. IBS in my teens for which I was given a life-sentence to medication which only partially helped. No one investigated my diet or gut microbial health. Uterine fibroids which had gotten so large (because they were hidden under an IBS-distended abdomen) that they had to be surgically removed without anyone uttering a word about estrogen-dominance needing to be addressed lest they grow all over again. It’s amazing how our belief in the white coats robs us of the opportunity to think for ourselves or listen to our instincts. The nugget of understanding that was so clear to my dairy-and-ear-pain-free, 11-year-old self did eventually shine through, and I ended up in Naturopathic medical school. Here I found true healers. They were not bearded sages making potions, as my family joked. They were just curious investigators who believed that what you put into your body affected it and that if you remove the obstacles to cure that the healing power of nature would reign supreme. Within three months of starting school, a food allergy panel revealed another food intolerance which when removed from my diet resulted in 100% resolution of my IBS.
Almost every medical problem that has arisen for myself or a family member has played out in a similar way over the years. Conventional medicine waited until we were sick and then tried several different pharmaceutical or surgical interventions without every trying to determine the cause of the illness or prevent it or another illness from developing. I wanted to do better for my patients, so began my mission to help others to shift out of the sick-care management of their health and into the wellness-centered model of healthcare.
The goal of my practice is to find and treat the cause of disease, not just the symptoms, by using a holistic approach coupled with safe and effective therapies. Whether you are a healthy person looking for strategies to maintain your health or you have been diagnosed with a chronic illness, there is much that we can do to prevent disease or improve your current state of health.
Very few of us are living at our optimum level of wellness. Despite the fact that most people suffer from one or several common-place maladies such as fatigue, depression, allergies, asthma, migraines, weight gain, auto-immunity, heart disease, arthritis, chronic pain, this is not the normal state for a human body. We should not accept this as an inevitability of being human. These are all signs of a body that is living out of balance Why is that? How have we strayed so far from an innate state of balance and gotten this far into dis-ease? The answer to that question lies fundamentally in the fact that we have disconnected from our bodies. Our ancestors understood the concept that a headache was a signal not to be turned off with a “magic pill” but to be investigated… that a fever was the body’s built-in mechanism to fight infection… that anything coming out of a ground sprayed with chemicals was not fit for human consumption… that a low mood could often be shifted with sleep, sunshine, exercise, and conversation. In today’s world, it’s easy to see how we ended up here (big pharma, Monsanto to name a few), but hard to find our own way because a lot of our compasses are either broken or where never calibrated to begin with. I don’t know about you, but I grew up thinking that Pop-Tarts was a perfectly reasonable breakfast and that Tylenol (Paracetamol) was much more essential than vitamins. This is why you might need a little help.
As a Naturopathic Doctor, my compass got re-calibrated by a league of veteran Naturopathic Doctors, herbalists, acupuncturists, and other educators of the body, mind, and spirit and, of course, by my patients who have allowed me in on their journeys. I offer a holistic approach to find the “obstacles to cure” (as they are called in the profession), remove those obstacles, and guide and empower you to lead a life of optimal health. My new-patient in-takes are ninety minutes long so that I can take the time to listen to you and learn all the specifics about where you are on the health to disease spectrum. Most of my patients are shocked and delighted to have had their whole story heard by their doctor for perhaps the first time in their lives. I investigate your chief complaints, diet, lifestyle, relationships, hobbies, history, and goals. We review existing lab work and/or discuss testing that I think would be helpful. We then, together, make a plan for our next steps, as I’ve found that being told what to do doesn’t work as well as being asked what you feel capable of doing next. Whether you are interested in prevention and wellness, weight loss, complex chronic diseases, or something in between, I would be happy to be your partner on your journey to optimal health.