4 Secrets to Finding a Paleo Doctor ..... Primal and low carb too.

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Registered: 03-13-2001
4 Secrets to Finding a Paleo Doctor ..... Primal and low carb too.
Thu, 08-16-2012 - 3:16pm

I have a paleo-friendly doctor.

But before I had my recent high cholesterol situation, I didn’t. I had a regular primary care practitioner whose immediate reaction to my test results was to tell me to get on statins ASAP.

I’ve found over the years that talking to a non-paleo doctor is often like speaking German to an Italian. The proximity is close and you’d think the gap bridgeable but, in fact, they are a world apart from us.  They haven’t a clue what we’re talking about. :-/

Giving up

I’d given up talking to my doctor, I’d got in the habit of showing up only once a year for necessary screening and taking the odd blood test. Except for a minor skirmish with a tick, I haven’t taken medication in years and certainly refuse any and all of the attempts to push anti-depressants on me, attempts that seem to take place, often in the absence of symptoms and certainly not at my initiation, at virtually every visit.

But this statins thing was a bind. I needed my doctor’s support to push my way through to the truth of what my high cholesterol truly meant. How would I explain I wasn’t giving up cream or coconut milk? How would I convince her that bacon wasn’t my problem?

Huntin’, shootin’, fishin’

When I got my test results and her note, I didn’t hesitate. I went on the hunt for a doctor who spoke my language. Someone who’d heard of paleo, the lifestyle principles and the diet.

I wanted someone who was sympathetic to my desire to avoid drugs without thorough investigation and who’d treat me as an equal partner, an intelligent person, educated in medical matters and invested in her treatment.

Paleo is still in its infancy but it is slowly breaking through. More and more paleo docs are breaking ranks and making themselves known. But many of us are still in the dark as to their whereabouts. I thought I’d let you in on where you can find them.

Secret #1: Paleo Physicians Network

The database started by Loren Cordain and Robb Wolf includes all manner of health professionals. A quick search throws up practitioners of internal medicine, acupuncturists, orthopedics, chiropractors, all sorts and is easily searchable by city, zip or state. Their mission: to provide a simple interface between health conscious consumers and the medical professionals who practice Darwinian/Evolutionary Medicine.

Secret #2: Primal Docs

Primal Docs enables you to look up medical doctors, healthcare practitioners and even Crossfit gyms in your area. There is a keyword search function but the maps are probably the most useful places to start. The site seems to be a work-in-progress but has details of practitioners additional to those in the Paleo Physicians Network so could be useful as you mine every piece of data for someone in your area.

Secret #3: Blog posts

Jimmy Moore of Livin’ La Vida Low Carb fame has a catalog of low carb doctors. And The Bulletproof Executive also compiled a list. If you’re in Australia or New Zealand, check out The Paleo Network’s post.

Secret #4: Your own network

If you read the above three lists and went ‘Waaaahhh! There’s no-one at all/of the right type within (insert your driving time limit) hours of me,’ fear not, there’s another alternative, one you should be implementing right now even if you don’t have a medical problem: Networking.

Attend paleo events, meetups and seminars. The event material can be primary or secondary to your networking purpose, it doesn’t matter, just make sure when you go to make connections with your paleo expert and their followers. Even if you are introverted, like me.

Make sure to chat to the person in the next seat. Build a relationship. Ask a question. Exchange details. Follow-up especially with thank-you messages where appropriate.

If there is nothing going on in your area, get online. Be active on forums. Comment regularly on blogs. Be nice. Share. Get yourself known. And then when the time is right, ask the question, “I need a paleo doctor in (insert your city here.) Do you know anyone?”


Luck, synchronicity, and goodwill all played a part in my success in finding a paleo doc. But I’d put the hard work in first.

I’d commented virtually every day on Mark’s Daily Apple for months and built something of a relationship with Mark Sisson by doing so. My husband (who I’d lived with 27 ways when he was non-paleo, then converted using these 12 strategies ;-) ) attended a local Primal Blueprint seminar to learn more about paleo and sat next to a doctor. He mentioned my blog to this doctor and chatted to him about, of all things, statins!

When I got my cholesterol results, I remembered my husband telling me about this doctor and I figured he must practice in my local area. I contacted Mark to see if I could find out his name and, cutting a long story short, I had an appointment to see my man the very next day. See how everything is interconnected? You just never know how things are going work out for you. Just keep showing up and doing your work.

If you know a paleo-friendly doctor not on any of the lists, leave her/his name, city and specialty type in the comment section or email me at alison at alisongolden dot com. I will develop our own Paleo Docs page for everyone’s reference.

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