Recognized as a vocal leader of integrative and functional medicine — or, in his words, “good medicine” — Frank Lipman, MD, is the Chief Medicine Officer of THE WELL New York. After receiving his initial medical training in his native South Africa, Dr. Lipman moved to the US, where he became the Chief Medical Resident at Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx, New York — an opportunity that exposed him to the power of acupuncture and Chinese medicine as treatments for drug addiction.

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Frustrated by the constraints of his medical school training — specifically, the instruction to focus on the disease rather than the patient and the symptoms rather than the root cause of the illness — Dr. Lipman started studying nutrition, acupuncture, Chinese, herbal, and functional medicine, biofeedback, meditation and yoga in search of a broader understanding of how to heal the body. He has used a personalized, integrative approach with patients ever since. His multi-modality wisdom can be found in the seven bestselling books he has authored on health and wellness — and below!

Q:

What does wellness mean to you?

A:

For me, it's not just the latest trend; it's been a lifestyle for quite a while now. It's changed as I have gotten older. Now that I am in my 60s, it is about being healthy enough to do all the things I want to do, so it requires paying more attention to what and when I eat, meditating, how I move, how much restorative sleep I get and how much quality time I spend with loved ones and in nature. But most importantly, it is about having “ubuntu.”

Q:

What is ubuntu?

A:

Ubuntu is a word from an indigenous South African language called Xhosa that basically means “what makes us human is the humanity we show each other” or, more simply, “I am because you are.” It’s a reminder to be kind, have gratitude and not lose my curiosity and passion for life.

Q:

What's something that's changed your approach to health and wellness?

A:

Being able to do genetic testing and get a patient’s “blueprint” to modify diet and exercise and provide targeted supplement recommendations as best as possible.

Q:

Describe your approach to treating patients in a sentence.

A:

I try to meet patients where they are and slowly take them on a health journey so they can stay vital and healthy as they grow older.

Q:

Favorite quote?

A:

"People are fed by the food industry which pays no attention to health, and are treated by the health industry which pays no attention to food." - Wendell Berry

Q:

Book you own that is the most dog-eared?

A:

Between Heaven and Earth: A Guide to Chinese Medicine by Harriet Beinfield, LAc, and Efrem Korngold, LAc

Q:

Early bird or night owl?

A:

Early — and I mean early — bird. I usually get up at 5 am.

Q:

Key to a good night’s sleep?

A:

Letting go of whatever happened during the day

Q:

What’s one way you take care of your mind every day?

A:

Meditation

Q:

When you really need to chill out, you...?

A:

Put on some Bob Marley

Q:

Instant mood lifter?

A:

Playing with Waffles, my daughter's Sheepadoodle

Q:

Food philosophy?

A:

While there’s no one right diet for everyone and you need to find what works best for you, try to eat as close to nature as possible.

Q:

Morning and bedtime rituals?

A:

In the morning, I meditate; at night, I turn off my cellphone at 8:30 pm.

Q:

How do you take coffee or tea?

A:

Coffee with almond milk and MCT oil

Q:

Words to live by?

A:

Be kind to everyone — including yourself.

Q:

How do you reboot?

A:

I take a long bike ride outside, followed by an infrared sauna and then a cold plunge.

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