Provider Spotlight: Sonja Fung, ND
by Wynter Kaiser
Dr. Sonja Fung is a primary care naturopathic doctor and owner of Live Well Clinic in La Quinta. Over the past ten years, Dr. Fung has helped thousands of patients find the root cause of their illness and empowered them through innovative, functional health modalities to make permanent wellness their reality.
Dr. Fung gained interest in naturopathic medicine and adjunctive cancer care by watching the grandmother who helped raise her pass away from colon cancer. She has been practicing in the valley since 2008 with a focus on integrative cancer therapies, regenerative injections (prolotherapy and PRP) for joint pain, IV nutrient support, bio-identical hormone balancing, and nutritional detox/cleanse programs.
DUTCH: What inspired you to become a healthcare practitioner?
Dr. Sonja Fung: I grew up utilizing the best of both herbal and conventional medicines, and I knew I wanted to pursue a profession of advancing sustainable health for my patients. After the passing of my grandmother, I wanted to be a doctor who wasn’t limited to cookie-cutter medicine and who looked outside of the box for viable treatment options. In my senior year of undergrad, while pursuing my pre-med degree, my uncle introduced me to naturopathic medicine, and the rest is history.
DUTCH: What is your training?
Dr. Sonja Fung: I have a BS in Psychology and Biology from the University of California, Los Angeles and a Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine from the National College of Natural Medicine in Portland, Oregon. I’ve taken Advanced Applications in Medical Practice for Oncology and Chronic Disease, all modules of the International IV Nutritional Therapy for Physicians, and BHRT trainings with the International Hormone Society. I’ve also attended regenerative medical trainings with the American Osteopathic Association of Prolotherapy and Regenerative Medicine (AOAPRM), the Hackett Hemwall Foundation – University of Wisconsin School of Medicine & Public Health, and the American Academy of Orthopedic Medicine (AAOM).
DUTCH: Describe your medical background/practice.
Dr. Sonja Fung: I started my private practice in the Coachella Valley in 2008 in a primary care setting with a focus on integrative cancer therapies, regenerative injection therapy for esthetics, joint pain, and chronic disease management (prolotherapy/PRP/stem cells), IV nutrient therapy, and bio-identical hormone balancing. Over the past 10+ years, my clinic has helped thousands of patients find the root cause of their illnesses and helped them live healthier lives. It is an honor to be able to serve our patients and make a difference in our community every day.
DUTCH: What other functional testing do you use in your practice?
Dr. Sonja Fung: As a primary care clinic, I utilize functional testing every day, including comprehensive cardiovascular labs (Berkley Heart Labs), GI testing (Genova/GI Map/Great Plains), heavy metal testing (Doctor’s Choice/Genova), and cancer markers (RGCC/ Biocept).
DUTCH: How have you incorporated DUTCH Testing into your practice?
Dr. Sonja Fung: I utilize DUTCH testing on all patients who use HRT as well as for patients with adrenal dysfunction, especially those with a high risk of hormonally-driven cancers (family history and personal history).
DUTCH: What are the changes you have seen in your patients and practice since incorporating the DUTCH Test?
Dr. Sonja Fung: I see the best clinical correlation between patient symptomology and DUTCH testing, more so than other types of hormone monitoring and testing.
DUTCH: Where do you see functional/integrative medicine 20 years from now?
Dr. Sonja Fung: Integrative medicine is the future of medicine. As we continue to be more in-depth with our lab testing, clinicians can better understand and practice precision and personalized medicine that is evidence-informed for the advancement of our patients’ health.
DUTCH: What do you like to do outside of work?
Dr. Sonja Fung: For my own balance of body/mind/spirit, I enjoy rock climbing and martial arts with my husband, Michael, and exploring international cuisine through cooking and travel. You can find me curled up with a novel, my two cats, and hot cup of tea or coffee from my hometown in Portland, Oregon.