Dr. Dee Saunders is the Associate Dean of Residency and the Chair of Graduate Medical Education at the National University of Natural Medicine (NUNM). She is a board certified naturopathic physician and medical researcher who earned her Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine and Masters of Science in Integrative Medicine at NUNM followed by a 2-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 and Science University (OHSU). Her doctoral training included a yearlong internship in gastroenterology with Dr. Steven Sandberg-Lewis, ND, DHANP, at the SIBO Center for Digestive Health followed by a Summer clerkship with Dr. Mark Pimentel, MD, FRCPC, at Cedar Sinai Hospital’s GI Motility Program. During her clinical training, she also spent time focusing on global health with Naturopaths Without Borders, where she brought her passion for serving underserved populations in need of healthcare 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.