“I was determined to prove that perhaps modern medicine did not have all the answers. Mix that with drive and a reluctance to accept the status quo, and you have what some would call passion.”

Laying the groundwork to become an ND

At six-years-old Ralph Esposito, ND, LAc recalls his pediatrician telling his mother, “If your husband had two heart attacks by 48, your son is going to have one by 30.”

“As a kid, after experiencing the perils of chronic disease in my family, I found comfort in thinking that if anything were to happen to me I’d be okay. Doctors had medicine, and there would be a pill to cure me.”

Those pills were not enough. Dr. Esposito watched as his father became medically disabled and heavily medicated. The threat of family history of chronic disease was a major contributing factor to why he chose to pursue naturopathic medicine when conventional medicine alone was not working.

“I was determined to prove that perhaps modern medicine did not have all the answers. Mix that with drive and a reluctance to accept the status quo, and you have what some would call passion.”

UBSNM as a springboard

“My curiosity in naturopathic modalities, largely nutrition and herbal medicine, sparked my interest even prior to entering undergrad at New York University.” Dr. Esposito started his path to naturopathic medicine at Bastyr University but his heart soon led him back to the East Coast where he completed his degree in naturopathic medicine at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. With dreams of practicing in New York, moving back to the East Coast allowed him to get a head start networking with MDs, DOs, NDs, LAcs and other professionals in the tri-state area. Those connections helped him land a position as an adjunct professor in nutrition at New York University, his alma mater.

Dr. Esposito credits UBSNM’s incredible faculty for the blend of conventional and integrative medical education. “Working with Dr. Peter D’Adamo shaped me as a physician and a person. His insight into molecular biology, network theory and genomics is remarkable which allowed me to see medicine in a new light, which I am grateful to have experienced while at UBSNM. “

“Living the dream” after graduation

Due to persistence and outreach to experts in the field of naturopathic medicine, Dr. Esposito accomplished his goal of practicing in New York. “I reached out to every single person I knew in the field of integrative or naturopathic medicine. I would email or ask any doctor I saw online, in articles or in person for their experienced insight.”  He especially credits Dr. Geo Espinosa for his mentorship and for allowing him to work with him at the NYU integrative and functional urology center for almost seven years.

Following graduation, Dr Esposito continued his work with Dr. Espinosa in research, writing and education modules. This experience led him to his current position as a medical consultant and research analyst for medical practice in New York. “Using my clinical and research skills, I am a second set of eyes to every patient. I provide my insight with all that is to be found in the medical literature coupled with my experience as a clinician.”

Finding fulfillment as an ND

“The naturopathic philosophy and approach to medicine is unfounded in other health professions. There is always something we can offer our patients.” Dr. Esposito continues to demonstrate his persistent and passionate spirit in promoting integration of naturopathic medicine with other well-known experts in the naturopathic medical field. This collaborative approach with other medical professionals drives his passion with the opportunity to push medicine forward. “I want our profession to be open to collaborating and integrating in an attempt to practice sound medicine.”

Advice for aspiring NDs

“There is no allopathic medicine vs. naturopathic medicine. There is only good medicine.” There are many skeptics of the naturopathic approach, but there is a world of medical experts that support the research and efficacy of naturopathic modalities.

“There is much we can offer to medicine but it must be accompanied with hard work, diligence and perseverance. If you are willing to work, the flexibility can be your strength.”

Learn more about Dr. Esposito:

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