Board Certified Psychiatrist
Master’s Degree in Herbal Medicine
Former Personal Exercise Trainer
Level II certified
Mentored by world-renowned nutrition expert and 6 time NY Times Best-Selling author Joel Fuhrman, M.D.
I have been fascinated with how the mind and brain works since I was a child. I love to learn and I love to teach people how to achieve the best mind-health possible. I have given hundreds of talks at universities, hospitals, corporations and national organizations on creating superior health for your brain and mind. I have presented several popular talks on a wide range of topics including:
I owned and ran a private practice in both Santa Barbara and San Jose. I treated clients using a progressive integrative approach incorporating meditation, nutrition, supplements, psychotherapy and conservative use of psychopharmacology. I currently practice integrative psychiatry at Modern Behavioral in Newtown Pennsylvania – a progressive psychiatric center owned by my great friend and addiction expert – Dr. Joseph Yi, M.D.
One of my fondest experiences was working at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Long Beach California where I led iREST meditation groups for veterans who had developed PTSD during time spent in combat while in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan. I enjoyed the challenge of teaching tough veterans the art of meditation and healthy living. To watch many of them make significant progress in their journey back to well-being was, and still is, inspiring to me and affirmed my passion for being a doctor.
“Overall, I enjoyed your sessions. They were beneficial, insightful and thought provoking. In all the years that I’ve been attending group [sessions] or seeing doctors, you are the first one that really hit home with my PTSD! I am really going to miss our sessions.”
– Retired Marine, Vietnam War Veteran..
I have been interested in learning about the body and mind since I was young. In part this was motivated by my early experiences with sickness during childhood. I struggled with chronic acid reflux, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, anxiety and food addictions until I reached my maximum weight of 267lbs with a 42 inch waist at age 21.
I felt heavy, I got sick often, and I was almost always tired. I made a decision when I was 22 to learn all I can about exercise and nutrition and after 3 years of research and experimentation I lost 77lbs and upgraded my level of health. I credit breaking my food addictions and healing my gut issues by implementing many of the Nutritarian principles that my mentor Dr. Joel Fuhrman taught me [link to Dr. Fuhrman’s profile on his webpage and will ask for a picture of his most popular book – Eat to Live]. I am eternally grateful to have had such a caring and wise mentor.
My side passion is cooking. I love to create healthy nutritious recipes to prove to people that they can have both a delicious and satisfying meal AND feel wonderful afterwards…rather than feeling tired, foggy, and like a 30lb sand bag was just placed on your back.
I love to cook and I love to teach, having a chance to do both in front of an audience at Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s Culinary Immersion in Newport, Califonia was one of the most enjoyable professional experiences I have had. I had given many talks in the past but never cooked and talked to a live audience before. We had no rehearsals and had to present and cook right off the cuff. That was a bit anxiety provoking but quickly turned into a lot of fun.
I enjoy being nerdy and reading scientific journals and any good book, video, or article on a wide array of topics that can be related back to mind-health. Years of reading and creating healthy programs for my patients taught me that the key to creating the best health strategies is to be open-minded and receptive to new ideas – even ones that may sound strange at first.
I intentionally read a wide range of authors, particularly ones who hold different views than the ones I currently have, to promote more versatile and creative thinking in which I evaluate the information with a healthy dose of skepticism.
My major motivation as an integrative medical doctor is to design the most effective strategies to help heal and strengthen the nervous systems and the minds of people I treat.
I am passionate about mind-health and exploring the interesting connections between seemingly disparate subject areas:
- Reading about music, I can see its power to elicit powerful emotions in a safe and effective way
- Reading about business, I can see how our patterns of cultural beliefs influence how we work, how we relate, and how we generate meaning in our lives
- Reading about sports and dance, I can see how important rituals are to put us in optimal states in order to perform at our best
My gift is knowing how to combine these insights into simple and effective strategies that can help people feel better, perform better, and reduce suffering.
My parents were teachers and I credit them both for instilling the love of lifelong learning and passing down the ‘teaching gene.’ I love to teach. In particular I enjoy the moment when someone really understands something new that has the power to transform their lives in a healthier way. That is very meaningful to me.
One of my favorite experiences in life is when a patient has a breakthrough – that ‘ah-ha moment’ when they can clearly see and let go of old self-destructive patterns and open the space for true healing to occur. They immediately feel lighter and brighter – often with greater levels of vitality that can be channeled into building previously dormant strengths…It’s one of the most beautiful things to be a part of. I get goose bumps every time.
Exercise has also been a large part of my life since I was young. The positive impact that exercise had on my mind has been obvious. When I was growing up I so much wanted to be like Bruce Lee and Rocky Balboa that I started drinking raw egg yolks and would chase chickens. Actually it was my dog but…you get the point.
I have had the great fortune to learn from many brilliant exercise experts and plowed through 1000’s of articles on exercise research. I experimented with a large amount of diverse exercise styles and after 15 years of reading, self-experimentation, and being a personal trainer to professional athletes, medical students, and medical doctors – I learned how to create quick and effective strategies to decrease the time in the gym while increasing the speed of progress and building a more powerful brain.
I enjoy exploring the frontiers of mind-health in new areas where performance enhancement becomes more of the focus. Areas such as:
Improving verbal fluency
Developing metacognition – mentalization
Boosting memory function
Boosting sustainable healthy energy
Promoting high quality living and longevity
My main vision is to create an evolving organization that develops intelligent effective learning tools derived from the best mind-health information. A progressive mindbody education center organized in an intuitive and engaging way that helps you easily differentiate between informational garbage from informational gold.
Most of the material on this site rides on the backs of many brilliant and compassionate women and men who have committed their lives to bettering our understanding of the human brain and mind. I am inspired by these people and deeply appreciate their dedication and contributions to help people feel better and live better lives.