Painful Periods and PCOS: How Naturopathic Medicine Can Help

Approximately 80% of women will have painful periods at some point in their lifetime, and 1 in 10 will be diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). Join the AANMC and Dr. Jamine Blesoff for an overview of PCOS and naturopathic approaches to healthy menstrual cycles.

*Webinar does not qualify for CE

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About the Presenter

Jamine Blesoff, ND is an instructor in the Clinical Sciences department for the Doctor of Chiropractic and Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine programs at National University of Health Sciences. She brings with her years of experience in providing women, infants, and children with natural preventative and integrative care.

Dr. Blesoff received her BA from the University of Connecticut and her doctor of naturopathic medicine degree from Bastyr University.  As a medical student at Bastyr University, she completed elective clinical shifts working with the pediatric population, Spanish speaking patients, and individuals with limited access to health care, including those in Nicaragua with Natural Doctors International.

She is a member of the Illinois Association of Naturopathic Physicians, Pediatric Association of Naturopathic Physicians and Natural Doctors International.


Register Now!

*The information you submit in this registration will be used to inform you of updates to this event and will enroll you in the AANMC newsletter. The AANMC values your privacy. Please see how we protect your data in our privacy policy .

Dr. Ralph Esposito – UBSNM

“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:


Learn More About Becoming a Naturopathic Doctor

Click below to receive information from the seven accredited naturopathic medical schools across eight North American campuses!

Kale 101: The Naturopathic Kitchen

Welcome back to The Naturopathic Kitchen! Each week we go back to the basics to use food as medicine in order to lead healthier lives. It can be intimidating to try new things especially when you don’t know what it is good for you or how to prepare/cook it. Today we’ll be discussing the ever-popular kale!

Kale 101

If there ever was a mascot for the healthy eating movement it would be kale. This curly dark-green vegetable has gotten quite the reputation as being the super food of superfoods. Coming from the brassica family, it is closely related to wild cabbage and has many of the same health benefits as other brassica family vegetables like broccoli, mustard greens, and cabbage.

Where does kale come from? Where can I find it?

Kale originated in the eastern Mediterranean and has been cultivated for culinary and medicinal uses for over 4000 years. In ancient Rome, kale was commonly used to treat bowel ailments. Because kale is so hardy and easy to grow, it has been an important dietary staple during difficult times. It wasn’t too long ago that kale could only be found at specialty food stores, co-ops, and farmer’s markets. But with the health food movement, kale has made its way into most major grocery stores. Kale is most easily found in the fresh produce section but can also be found in the snack aisle in the form of dried kale chips. It is important to note that kale is often on the dirty dozen list, so it is best to get organic kale when possible.

How does kale help my health?

Not only is kale loaded with nutrients like vitamin K, vitamin C, carotenoids, flavonoids, magnesium, and calcium, it is also rich in glucosinolates which aid in detoxification at the cellular level. This makes kale and other brassica family vegetables a viable way to help our bodies process and eliminate many of the harmful pesticides, solvents, and heavy metals that we are exposed to in modern society.1 Studies have shown that certain nutrients are more bio-available when consumed steamed rather than raw or boiled2 though the antioxidants can break down during the cooking process. So, a balanced diet including raw and cooked forms of kale is ideal.

What medical conditions/symptoms is kale used for?

When should kale be avoided?

Kale and other brassica family vegetables contain compounds that are capable of blocking iodine uptake by the thyroid gland. This can cause the thyroid gland to grow in size to try to compensate. Because of this goitrogenic effect, it is best to consume kale in moderation and in even smaller amounts in those with hypothyroidism. However, cooking dramatically reduces this effect.


Let’s try out kale with these tasty recipes!


Roasty Toasty Beets and Kale Salad



3 medium beets (about 3 inches in diameter)
1⁄2 large yellow onion, cut in half
2 t extra-virgin olive oil to taste
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
1⁄4 c crumbled goat cheese
1 bunch organic kale
1⁄8 t sea salt
4 T balsamic vinegar



Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Wash beets and trim ends. Reserve beet greens for salad. Slice beets crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Spread beets and onions in a single layer in two 9x13-inch baking pans. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper; toss to coat.

Roast for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.

Wash and de-stem kale. Cut kale in ribbons to desired thickness and place in medium bowl. Sprinkle kale with sea salt. Massage kale until moist and tender. Cut beat greens to similar thickness.

Plate kale and greens; top with slightly cooled beets and onions. Sprinkle goat cheese atop. Drizzle vinegar evenly over salad. Serve warm or chilled.


Thank you to Bastyr University for this recipe!



Baked Kale Chips



1-2 bunches of Lacinato/Italian Kale
2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 T coconut or olive oil
Sea salt to taste
Cayenne pepper (optional)


  1. Wash and pat dry the kale. Preheat oven to 350 degrees (325 degrees if using olive oil).
  2. Peel kale leaves away from thick stems and put in a bowl.
  3. Add oil, garlic and salt and other seasoning and toss well or massage by hand.  Spread out kale on baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until kale is slightly crispy around the edges.


Thank you to NUNM’s Food as Medicine Institute for this recipe!  


Become the Doctor You'd Like to Have

Learn more about becoming a naturopathic doctor. Receive information from one of our seven accredited schools across the U.S. & Canada.

2018 Year in Review

A Year of Academics, Scholarship and Community Outreach

Each and every year, the field of naturopathic medical education advances significantly. We are proud to recap the advances our seven accredited naturopathic medical schools made in academics, scholarship and community outreach during 2018. Looking ahead, there is a lot to be excited for as well!

Click the tabs above to read messages from each of the schools.

A Year of Celebration and Change

Bastyr University
San Diego, California & Seattle, Washington

Now in our 40th year, Bastyr is proud of our historical legacy and of the growth we have witnessed in the naturopathic profession. Our campus leaders and students continue to make great strides in our local communities. 

In Seattle, we have forged a new Center for Integrative Medicine in partnership with Virginia Mason. With nine clinics and one hospital location, this Seattle-area health system has sought out the natural medicine experts at Bastyr Center for Natural Health to expand their continuum of care in a way that answers their rising patient demand for effective, holistic approaches to common health concerns, opening up attractive career opportunities for our graduates. 

In San Diego, clinical training opportunities continues to expand for our naturopathic medical students through the addition of integrative oncology care at Bastyr University Clinic. Beyond our own campus community, San Diego County officials have designated Bastyr a Live Well San Diego partner; we now join over 300 organizations to support the vision of a region “Building Better Health, Living Safely and Thriving.” 

With innovative advancements in clinical training initiatives soon underway in 2019, we look forward to a bright future for our graduates as they find their place as naturopathic physicians transforming the health care system! 

To learn more about Bastyr, click here.

A Year of Promising New Initiatives

Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

The Boucher Institute would like to congratulate our students for their hard work and commitment to their studies and to the profession. Our students, once again, outperformed average NPLEX results by a healthy margin. An additional note of gratitude is extended to the hard-working faculty that are second to none in terms of preparing our students to become excellent, compassionate doctors. This year Boucher established collaborative relationships with other higher education institutions in the areas of research and recruitment. We are excited for the rich opportunities our students will gain as a result of these advances.

Our academic team will be expanding in order to support the school’s growth and new programs. Additionally, we have invested in developing new and exciting fundraising sources to benefit students and ensure that our tuition costs remain as steady as possible over the longer term.

New programs are being built to ensure continued graduate success and employment opportunities. The core of our program will continue to teach our students the benefits of practicing collaborative medicine. Boucher graduates are grounded in the roots of the naturopathic medicine and its supporting science, because it represents the soundest form of sustainable medicine. We look forward to what will be an exciting 2019.

To learn more about BINM, click here.

A Historic Anniversary Year

Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

CCNM celebrated its 40th anniversary and launched several new initiatives this year. We’ve made terrific strides with our curriculum review project, Curriculum Visioning 40 (CV40). Starting with a consultation document sent to over 2,000 stakeholders, we subsequently surveyed alumni to identify which conditions new graduates should treat, and the knowledge and skills they require. In August, a group of NDs, including faculty, met to distill and refine the 952 conditions identified. We’re quickly discovering how today’s students learn best. We don’t know how our curriculum will evolve, but we’re committed to making the next 40 years even stronger than the first. Applicants have responded to our vitality – September enrollment was over 25% higher than in 2017.

The CCNM Integrative Cancer Centre (CCNM ICC)  opened in May where NDs and other practitioners provide naturopathic and complementary treatments to cancer patients. We also opened three new community health-care clinics (CHC) in Toronto. Innovation has also come in the form of electronic health records (EHR), which ensures our patients can transfer their records between providers. With more advancements in our academic and clinical program on the horizon, 2019 promises to bring even more celebration.

To learn more about CCNM, click here.

A Year of Accolades and Outreach

National University of Health Sciences
Chicago, Illinois

2018 marked another successful year for National University’s outreach events and student organizations. In March, both health care professionals and the local community attended the first-of-its-kind Nutrition Conference featuring renowned medical experts. National University also welcomed local families on campus during the second-annual Healthy Kids event, which allows clinic interns to interact with a more diverse patient population. Throughout the year, Naturopathic Medical Student Association (NMSA) awarded the NMSA Chicago Chapter comprised of NUHS students multiple honors. The chapter nabbed the Golden Avocado Award, which is awarded to students that do the best job of recognizing Naturopathic Medicine Week through the creation of events and activities. National University’s students also won first place in the NMSA Trivia Cup, a competition between naturopathic colleges that tests student knowledge of naturopathic medicine.

In 2019, NUHS will expand opportunities for its naturopathic medicine (ND) interns. While internship opportunities currently exist for ND students in the NUHS Lombard Whole Health and (Chicago) Salvation Army clinics, the NUHS Aurora site will soon join the list. Just as at its sister locations, Aurora interns will work with their chiropractic medicine colleagues to serve the health care needs of the local community.

To learn more about NUHS, click here.

A Year of Scholarship and Advancement

National University of Natural Medicine
Portland, Oregon

In 2018, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) agreed to provide up to $250,000 in tuition scholarships from 2018 through 2020 for naturopathic medicine students. In exchange, once they graduate, students commit to providing healthcare services in rural and under-served communities for several years. This is yet another step forward in recognizing the naturopathic profession, and an incredible opportunity for eligible ND students to reduce their tuition debt through service by addressing healthcare disparity in Oregon.

With two clinics recognized as Tier 4 Patient-Centered Primary Care Homes―a top-level certification granted by OHA―our students are learning within exemplary models for how primary care should be organized and delivered. And with a high volume of Medicaid patients and uninsured patients, students are seeing greater complexity and higher levels of pathology while bringing naturopathic medicine to diverse patient populations.

In 2019, we look forward to continued curriculum innovation. This is the fourth (and final) year implementing our competency-based, clinically integrated systems-block design. Our courses are not siloed and meaningful application of knowledge is prioritized over memorization of facts. NUNM’s faculty challenge students to think critically, develop their individual strengths as healers, and to educate and motivate patients on how to live with less pain, burden and suffering.

To learn more about NUNM, click here.

A Banner Year and New Era Of Pain and Chronic Disease Treatment

Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine
Phoenix, Arizona

This fall, SCNM began accepting current students into three distinct honors tracks in Community Medicine, Pediatrics, and Regenerative Medicine. These focused areas of clinical education will be included in the Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree program. They will allow students to identify areas of interest and better position themselves for competitive post-graduate opportunities and residencies. More honors tracks are scheduled to be announced in 2019.

Additionally, SCNM introduced the Neil Riordan Center for Regenerative Medicine on campus. For two generations the name Riordan has been synonymous with medical advances harnessing the body’s innate healing ability. The Neil Riordan Center for Regenerative Medicine will build on this legacy, turning the tide from symptom suppression to regeneration and healing. Replacing the Pain Relief Center, the Neil Riordan Center for Regenerative Medicine is in a 6,200-square foot space on the SCNM campus. Through patient care, research and medical education, the Neil Riordan Center for Regenerative Medicine will help usher in a new era in the treatment of pain and chronic disease and provide students with numerous educational opportunities in pain management. For more information on either opportunity, visit

To learn more about SCNM, click here.

A Year of New Leadership and Change

University of Bridgeport School of Naturopathic Medicine
Bridgeport, Connecticut

2018 has been an exciting year at University of Bridgeport!  UB welcomed Dr. Laura Skandera Trombley as our new President, and the first female President!  President Trombley is an experienced administrator, and a renowned scholar and author. She began her administration with a major reorganization of the University, consolidating fourteen colleges, institutes, and programs into three new colleges: Arts and Sciences; Health Sciences; and Engineering, Business, and Education. The College of Health Sciences includes programs in several disciplines: naturopathic medicine, chiropractic, nutrition, acupuncture, dental hygiene, nursing, physician’s assistant, health sciences, and medical lab technology.

UBSNM is proud to share that our accreditation review by the CNME in September led to re-accreditation for the next seven years, recognizing the quality of the program and the hard work of administrators, faculty, and staff.

In 2019, we are looking forward the 4th Annual Plunge, honoring World Wetlands Day with a dash into our very own waterfront – Long Island Sound. Our annual Philosophy Day is a celebration of the naturopathic principles and our elders. Guest speakers, garden sales and walks, and the Garlic Fest make this a well-loved event at UBSNM. UB faculty and students will present their research in an all-day event featuring poster presentations and keynote speakers. Last year several UBSNM students presented posters based on their thesis work and on the multi-center clinical trial led by Dr. Kim Sanders.

To learn more about UBSNM, click here.

Become the Doctor You'd Like to Have

Learn more about becoming a naturopathic doctor. Receive information from one of our seven accredited schools across the U.S. & Canada.

Stressed? Learn How It Impacts Your Health and How to Cope

Join the AANMC and Brad Lichtenstein, ND, BCB-HRV for a webinar focused on how stress impacts the body and natural ways to cope.

Stressed? Learn How It Impacts Your Health and How to Cope

The impacts of stress can ripple through our health by influencing all aspects of our mind and body. NDs help patients identify stressors, teaching them simple techniques to manage stress, and how to avoid situations that may lead to negative impacts on health and well-being.

Join the AANMC and Dr. Brad Lichtenstein to:

-Learn about the body’s natural response to stress
-Identify ways to minimize your stress
-Hear about a patient case managed with naturopathic medicine

Become the Doctor You'd Like to Have

Learn more about becoming a naturopathic doctor. Receive information from one of our 8 accredited schools across the U.S. & Canada.