Dr. Dee Saunders is the dean of graduate medical education at NUNM. She is a naturopathic physician and medical researcher who earned her Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine and Master of Science in Integrative Medicine Research at NUNM, followed by a two-year accredited residency in evidence-based integrative primary care. Her graduate-level research and thesis included designing and conducting a study exploring the relationship between small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) and intestinal permeability, food hypersensitivity and autoimmunity. As an adjunct faculty member, she teaches in neurology, mental health and is the course director for gastroenterology at the university.
She is continuing her work with patients, students and residents as an attending physician in the NUNM Health Centers and a clinical assistant professor at Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU). Her doctoral training included a year-long internship in gastroenterology with Steven Sandberg-Lewis, ND, DHANP, at the SIBO Center for Digestive Health, followed by a summer clerkship with Mark Pimentel, MD, FRCPC, at Cedar Sinai Hospital’s GI Motility Program. During her clinical training, Dr. Saunders also spent time focusing on global health with Naturopaths Without Borders, where she brought her passion for serving underserved populations in need of health care to Panajechal, Guatemala.
Dr. Saunders strives to ensure that all her patients have access to the information, education and solutions they need to treat their health issues in the most effective, least invasive way possible. She is passionate about treating the root cause versus masking symptoms, and offers well-rounded individualized care strategies for optimal health and wellness. Her integrative approach draws from conventional medical modalities, when necessary, along with naturopathic modalities including nutrition, lifestyle counseling and botanical medicine, in an effort to achieve optimal health. She enjoys working with patients to achieve their personal health goals by formulating individualized treatment plans and supporting patients in removing their barriers to health.
When Dr. Saunders is not spending time with patients, students and residents, she can be found spending time with her partner, family and friends. She is often found chasing her incessant love of everything that is outdoors including hiking, biking, or walking amongst the birds and the trees, from the coast to the highest mountains and back again.