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Conversations with the Inspiring Ashley de Luna

Today we’d like to introduce you to Ashley de Luna.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be a doctor. The true capabilities of the human body have always fascinated me. Once I started exploring the world of science and getting a glimpse into what was happening on the cellular and molecular level, my curiosity evolved into a clear direction for my life. In high school, I started shadowing different medical professionals in the field to try to find my place in medicine. I spent time with everything from anesthesiology to veterinary medicine. To be honest, it was not what I thought it would be – literally or energetically. There was no discussion on lifestyle or nutrition and the visits were incredibly fast. Many of the providers seemed tired and jaded by the medical system. A few of my mentors bluntly told me – ‘you’re not meant to do this,’ or ‘I wouldn’t choose this profession.’ Nevertheless, I moved from New York to San Diego to begin the road to medical school in trust that I would figure out where I belonged along the way. It was in my first year of college that I met a naturopathic doctor and discovered naturopathic medicine. Within moments of hearing the way that he viewed health and healing, I knew that it was what I was seeking. I now find myself on the other end of that road. I have just completed my medical school education and have opened my own private practice. It is a dream come true. I absolutely love being a naturopathic doctor.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Nothing worth having comes easily. The road to becoming a doctor was not smooth or easy. First off, the price tag alone is quite intimidating. To be honest, it almost stopped me before I had the chance to start. It was very clear that if medicine was the path that I chose that I would be paying for it. That meant supporting myself and working two jobs throughout high school, college, and medical school. It was draining and frustrating. In addition, the rigor of a medical program is undeniable. There is always the sense of having a mile long to-do list and living according to someone else’s schedule. There were many times of feeling stuck and hopeless. Yet, the fire of knowing that there was nowhere else I could possibly be kept me going.

My advice is to always remember who you are and why you are putting in the work. Always hold on to that feeling you felt when you discovered your dream. That feeling will remind you of your strength and your purpose in your moments of doubt. It will inspire you to keep moving forward regardless of where you find yourself on the path.

Tell us more about your work.
I am a licensed naturopathic doctor, yoga instructor, and craniosacral therapist living in Ocean Beach, CA. My work focuses on providing root-cause medical care for my community. As a naturopathic doctor, I am trained in conventional medical care as well as nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathy and physical medicine. My areas of focus include mental health, digestive health, hormone balancing, and women’s medicine. I have a passion for working with women, children, and families.

I love empowering my patients to choose health every day. Part of choosing health involves education and understanding what you need to thrive. I am passionate about helping my patients unravel their story to find the true capabilities of their body. Choosing to work with a naturopathic doctor means choosing to create a completely new life that is in alignment with health. Together, we investigate your health history, diet, lifestyle, habits, and current concerns to paint a complete picture of you. Treatment is individualized and prioritizes the least invasive approach. Truthfully, I believe that the body has the capabilities to heal when removing the obstacles and providing what it needs. I love witnessing my patients as they discover what they are capable of.

What do you feel are the biggest barriers today to female leadership, in your industry or generally?
I believe that one of the most significant barriers today to female leadership is a distorted perception of worth. As women, we have been told throughout history and through societal norms that we are worth and valued less than a man. It is truly unbelievable that these inequalities and perceptions still exist today, but I think that speaks to the depth in which they have been dug. I believe that when women discover their true power, there is nothing in the way of stepping into the leadership role. I believe that a woman who understands her value and power is unstoppable. Change will involve teaching children and young women that they truly have the potential to become anything.

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Image Credit:
Vanessa Alcaraz

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