Meet Dr. Dennis Godby

Hello, I am Dr. Dennis Godby, ND.

As a naturopathic doctor, I have witnessed the power of a preventative lifestyle and naturopathic medicine to transform the health and lives of thousands of patients over the last 6+ years. To nationally share this extremely good news – how to prevent the preventable – I founded The Run: Moving Natural Medicine Forward,and ran 3,200 miles across the USA, at a 30 mile per day clip, over 4 months, to promote a healthier America and to increase the visibility of naturopathic medicine (see

After talking to thousands of people across 16 states and Washington, DC, over 124 days on the highways and biways of America, there is a virtual consensus among the American people that our nation is not preventing the preventable, that our very lifestyles are killing us, and that as a nation, we are overusing pharmaceutical drugs!

I grew up using conventional medicine, as many of you probably did. My mother was a Registered Nurse (RN), which afforded me the opportunity of hearing many amazing hospital stories. Over her 34 years of nursing she provided care for generations of families throughout the community. To this day, it is the stories of her compassionate care for the “whole” patient and their extended family that serve as an inspiration for my work in the field of medicine.

What made sense to me as early as my high school years was what we now refer to as preventative medicine. I became very passionate about exercise, while training for track, and other sports. Through running, I discovered the mind-body-spirit connection. I experienced the power of endorphins, also known as the “runner’s high,” long before I studied about these hormones in physiology class. I became a lifelong runner, while also enjoying other rigorous activities such as lake swimming, bicycle commuting, and hiking.

From my earliest memories, I have had a deep appreciation for food and healthy eating. Growing up with California’s abundant fresh fruit and vegetables, a mother that grew up on a farm and provided many meals for frequent guests, I became interested in nutrition at an early age. After taking a college fitness appreciation class, I changed my major to Health and P.E., emphasizing exercise physiology and nutrition. To encourage running and physical fitness I organized family “fun runs” in my college community. To test the limits of human endurance and promote physical fitness and nutrition I ran to Alberta, Canada, from Corvallis, Oregon, attempting the longest run ever, without a support team. Running 39 miles a day, alone, for 37 days, over the Cascades and Canadian Rockies, pushed my physical and mental limits, and also provided a tremendous source of spiritual growth.

After college I became more aware of the African famines and world hunger, and thus began my increased involvement in social justice work. It was hard for me to imagine people dying and not reaching their potential, simply because of a lack of food, which most Americans took for granted. After much study and traveling throughout the U.S. on a “Journey of Truth,” I spent the next decade working as a community organizer for peace and justice in Latin America. I had the opportunity along the way to meet and advocate for Salvadorean and Guatemalan refugees being protected in the Sanctuary Movement. I was fortunate to be able to make many journeys to Central and South America. I learned Spanish, and fell in love with the Latin American people and culture. Again, using running as the way that I could best contribute my energies towards peace and justice in Central America, I organized and ran across the North American continent, from San Francisco to Washington, D.C. This 3,006 mile run took place over a 16 week period, in the middle of winter, and became known as a “run of conscience”.

Having the yearning for a deeper spirituality, and more academic grounding, I attended the Maryknoll School of Theology, receiving a fellowship, for which I will forever be grateful. After receiving my M.A. in Theological Studies, with an emphasis in social justice and peace, I taught high school religious studies courses and public school E.S.L. classes, for over a decade. My students and colleagues had a profound impact on my life! It was here that I discovered that the most significant element in the learning process as a teacher was not in imparting information to students, but in developing genuine relationships with my students. Interactive relationships provided a much greater opportunity for education to flourish and this experience has provided the backbone of my medical practice today.
Leaving teaching was emotionally difficult, but I left with a leap of faith that there was something else I was supposed to do: to articulate the body-mind-spirit relationship of holistic health as a physician-teacher of natural medicine. For the next six years, I attended and graduated from the National College of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland. I now have the opportunity and the privilege to practice medicine in California as a licensed primary care provider; I can do what I love – helping people to not only optimize their health and energy, but to also improve the overall quality of their life. I feel honored that I am able to make a difference in the lives of my patients.

After witnessing the struggle of my mother and other family members with type 2 diabetes – an almost completely preventable disease – I made the commitment to spend the rest of my professional life on the prevention, treatment and reversal of diabetes and the many other chronic conditions.

My goal as a naturopathic doctor and teacher is to assist patients in living to their fullest health potential, physically, psychologically, emotionally and spiritually.

Preventing illness is the primary goal in naturopathic medicine. However, when a person becomes out of balance, and has a “dis-ease” or is not optimally healthy, the first principle of naturopathic doctors is to do no harm – to utilize the most natural, non-toxic, and the least invasive therapies first. Another high priority for an NMD is finding the underlying cause(s) of illness, not merely treating symptoms, therefore, hundreds of disgnostic and functional medical labs are available to help diagnose.

In order for any treatment plan to work, it must be practical, easy to understand and implement, affordable, and most importantly, it must be prescribed and individualized for each patients’ needs. The only ideal treatment plan is one that patients will actually commit to using.

Credentials – Dr. Dennis Godby, BS, MA, ND

Education and Training

  • Functional Diagnostic Medicine Training Program, Functional Medicine University, 2008
  • Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine, National College of Naturopathic Medicine, Portland, Oregon, 2004
  • Masters of Arts, Theological Studies, Maryknoll School of Theology, Maryknoll, NY, 1990
  • Bachelors of Science, Exercise Physiology, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR, 1979
  • Certified Seminar Leader, American Seminar Leader’s Association, Pasadena, CA


  • Doctor of Naturopathy, Sutter Medical Foundation