I am from Philadelphia originally where I grew up and went to undergrad at University of Pennsylvania training for a life in research in molecular biology. I had a crisis one day and realized I didn’t want to spend my days staring at petri dishes but rather I wanted to help people. I quit my job in a research lab and did a very trite 9 month trip through Central America to “find myself.” I did though and learned about naturopathy and within a month of learning about it was on a flight to Seattle to interview at Bastyr. Bastyr actually wrote up a really nice article about my journey – you can read it here.
I went to Bastyr where I focused on research as a student. I published a few papers, was granted a founders award, presented at the AANP and Cochrane Colloquium, started a couple research clubs on campus and generally loved naturopathy and was passionate about how it intersected with evidence based medicine.
I graduated in 2013. I was offered a Bastyr residency, which I always thought I desperately wanted but was also offered a great job working alongside an open minded family practice MD so I spent the past three years with her building up a concierge MD/ND medical model. It was lovely. I saw lots of patients, learned a lot about integrating conventional and natural medicine and along the way, I got married to a marvelous woman who went on to become a sonographer. During those years I stayed active in research, started teaching EBM at Bastyr and launched a physician education company called Dr Journal Club.
When my wife graduated from sonography school we took a long look at our lives. I was working 70-80 hour weeks. We had good friends and I loved my professional life but our family was in CO and my workload was not sustainable. My naturopath pushed me to examine our values and we quickly saw that to us family was more important than our professional lives. So we packed up. I sadly said goodbye to teaching at Bastyr and to my clinic (n1Health) and patients and we moved to CO.
While I focused on family practice in Seattle I quickly saw how effective our naturopathic treatments were for IBS. It was INCREDIBLE to see. My research had focused heavily on probiotics and gut health and I was beginning to think that while I loved the breadth of family practice I wanted to get into something I could really specialize in and get great at. Gut health/IBS was a natural choice.
We knew we wanted to move to CO to be closer to family but we didn’t know where in CO. We drove up and down I-25 looking at different cities and towns and talked to everyone we knew about where we should move to. When we arrived in the Springs we were immediately in love. It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and it just felt right to us on a gut level. It was decided.
With the help of my naturopath, I have now limited my working hours and divided them among my professional passions: seeing patients, teaching, and research.
I see patients now 2 days a week. I was faculty at Bastyr where I taught EBM, grand rounds, and integrative case studies before moving but now teach EBM to the AIHM (Academy of Integrative Health and Medicine) fellows and run my physician education site and teach via online video/CME, vloging, and in-person seminars. I am also a research investigator for Bastyr University Research Institute and a visiting research fellow at the University of Technology Sydney. You can see some of my Pubmed indexed articles here.