I finished my residency in OB/GYN in 2000. My interests in hormone balancing began in 2001, shortly after the results of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) were publicized in the media. Like many physicians practicing the standard of care, I took many women off their hormones at that time. Gradually, many women returned to me, complaining of head-to-toe symptoms such as foggy memory (some even feared that they were developing Alzheimer’s dementia), hair thinning, night sweats, hot flashes, poor sleep, achy joints, no sex drives, painful sex, weight gain, no energy, palpitations, anxiety, depression, loss of bone mass, and many other symptoms. I tried using supplements such as black cohash, and other herbal remedies, which did not help much for the majority of my patients. Certain drugs such as “Effexor and Neurontin” were being promoted to treat the hot flashes, but I knew they were simply suppressing symptoms while not addressing the true underlying cause. Under the conventional medicine model, I would probably prescribe a whole host of “anti-” drugs, including an anti-depressant for the depression and anxiety, anti-inflammatories for their achy joints, an anti-hypertensive beta-blocker medication for the palpitations, Fosamax for their bone loss, Ambien for sleep, and just tell them that it is aging-related, and work on reducing stress. Once again, I began to question why women needed to suffer when it was obvious that we had the technology to literally “cure” these problems with bio-identical (i.e., human-identical) hormones. The results of WHI were being applied to all women across the board in sweeping generalization, propelled further by media sensationalism without respect to each individual woman’s medical situation or careful analysis of the study’s details by medical providers. Thus began my research into the use of hormone replacement therapy and specifically, the use of bio-identical hormones. I am grateful to the numerous women who “experimented” along with my recommendations in the beginning, looking for the right balance – a process which has now been greatly refined and customized.
To further my knowledge, I completed a Naturopathic Medical Degree
The knowledge I gained in researching metabolism and nutrition pushed me towards preventive health, which literally starts with a healthy diet and lifestyle – factors which only the patient can control. By simply pointing out their importance and guiding patients in the right direction, I have been able to successfully remove or reduce many drugs from their regimen while simultaneously improving their health. I feel that patients are underserved with the conventional medical motto of “early detection of disease”, which is often promoted as preventive health. It does absolutely nothing to truly prevent disease. This viewpoint assumes that the body is prone to disease, so that we must catch it earlier if we are to defend against it. This model of susceptibility to chronic diseases also conveniently makes drugs an effective tool. While I believe in the importance of early detection of disease, I take the approach that the body is a miraculous, complex system that generally works quite well, but that we need to do a few basic things (like eat a healthy diet, manage our stress and lifestyle, etc.) to keep it running well, much like tune-ups are needed to keep a car running well. These “tune-ups” are much more important and become more complex as we age. I also realize that not everyone is blessed with a healthy genetic make-up or social network, and in those people, early detection of disease and appropriate medications can be powerful tools in keeping them functional.
To further my knowledge, I completed coursework for a Masters degree in Holistic Nutrition
I believe we should be able to blend the best of conventional western medicine and alternative/complimentary medicine in an integrative fashion to treat the whole patient, as clearly each has many beneficial treatment and strategies to offer the whole patient.
I completed a self study program in holistic nutrition to learn to focus on an individual’s nutrition, not necessarily what is recommended for the general population. In other words, I was taught how to look beyond the Food Pyramid.
Studies in holistic nutrition include discussions about digestion, the immune system, allergic reactions and other biochemical processes. I examinee the nutritional value of different foods and how cooking and processing affects the quality. There are hundreds of different “diet programs” in existence, and I help patients navigate the best plan for their particular needs.
I became Board Certified by the American Academy of Anti-Aging, Regenerative and Functional Medicine (A4M).
The Anti-Aging Program begins with a consultation that reviews your personal and family medical histories. Each program is individually designed to identify where you are in the aging process, and detail the specific benefits from various treatments.
Simply put, so you can be the best that you can be. We all need help staying on track, sometimes we don’t even know which track we should be on! You would never get where you are trying to go if you kept driving in the wrong direction.
A good anti-aging program can help detect, prevent, and reverse degenerative conditions like heart disease, cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis, stroke, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis, autoimmune disease and glaucoma. Our program has also been successful in helping patients who suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia.
I also completed an Integrative Cancer Therapy Fellowship with A4M
I believe that changing lifestyle or environment during childhood and/or adult life can lower cancer incidence and improve survival. Cancer prevention and control is essential to reducing cancer risk, incidence, morbidity and mortality. Much of cancer mortality in the United States can be prevented by reducing tobacco use, alcohol consumption, poor dietary behaviors, physical inactivity, obesity, over-exposure and unprotected exposure to sunlight and artificial light, and exposure to viruses through blood and sexual activity. Furthermore, early screening and detection, enhancing quality of life, and prolonging life among cancer survivors are my main areas of focus.
Call today to schedule a consult to see how I can help you achieve optimum health!