Dr. Chris Browne earned his Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Truman State University. He then attended Logan University, where he earned his Bachelor of Science in human biology, continuing on to complete his doctor of chiropractic degree at University of Western States (UWS). Dr. Browne returned to UWS to earn his Master of Science in human nutrition and functional medicine, graduating with the first cohort in the program while maintaining a full-time clinical practice focusing on neuromusculoskeletal care and nutritional management of chronic disease.
After co-developing and teaching post-graduate courses in manual therapy and chiropractic adjustive technique, Dr. Browne became a professor at National University of Natural Medicine (NUNM) where he taught physical medicine, orthopedics and clinical nutrition to senior naturopathic doctorate students and supervised interns delivering patient care. During this time, he began teaching in the UWS MS in human nutrition and functional medicine program. Dr. Browne serves as director of the human nutrition and functional medicine programs, while continuing to teach. His other professional activities have included textbook reviewing, teaching in the NUNM Grand Rounds series, lecturing for the Oregon Collaborative for Integrative Medicine (OCIM) and presenting to various health care practitioner associations.
What made you to decide to come to UWS?
I have been consistently impressed with the university’s emphasis on the application of scientific evidence to the process of assessment, treatment and prevention of illness. It’s one of my core values as a clinician-educator and when our values align with our work, the result is always greater success and enjoyment.
What excites you most about the school’s future?
UWS is increasingly recognized as a leader in integrative health and functional medicine education – this leadership provides opportunities to advance the profession in ways that will benefit patients and practitioners for many years to come. It’s exciting to be part of an institution that’s helping to create positive change in the world of health care.
Where does your passion for teaching stem from?
I’m fortunate to have had excellent teachers throughout my education. Reflecting on how much of a difference their work made to my success and my patients’ lives, teaching was a natural choice for me. On a day-to-day basis, my energy comes from knowing that the students I have the privilege of teaching will go on to provide exceptional care to their patients and clients or will make other needed contributions to our shared field.
Why do you think the role of human nutrition and functional medicine is so important in integrative health care?
Nutrition touches every aspect of our health; all our bodily systems are influenced by what we eat and the results have far-reaching impacts on just about any chronic health condition you could name (and many acute ones). Each meal can shift our physiology toward or away from illness – that’s a powerful tool that we can use multiple times a day throughout our whole lives. We’ve reached a point where the research and clinical experience of most practitioners is in agreement: the most common debilitating and deadly chronic diseases are deeply impacted by our choices and lifestyle. What we choose to eat, whether we move our bodies, which environmental exposures we experience, how we think and feel about ourselves and our world. Functional medicine gives us a systematic framework for matching nutrition and lifestyle strategies to the needs of the individual we’re working with. By asking the right questions and collecting the necessary data, we can better understand the underlying physiological imbalances that result in illness, helping us to more effectively prevent or address it.
What is your favorite thing to do in Portland?
Eat! We have so many options here for delicious food that is also healthful and environmentally sustainable. I think it’s crucial that while we study the therapeutic potential of food, we still appreciate that its sensory and social dimensions can deeply enrich our lives.
- MS-HNFM Capstone Course
- Exploring student perceptions of their learning adaptions during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Journal of chiropractic education (2022), 36(1), 82–93. Access publication.