If you’re thinking of kicking or cutting back on your consumption of sweets and quickie carbs, it’s really smart to see a doctor to guide your progress. But, often, people tell they’re having problems finding someone who takes their sugar habit seriously. Here’s an article I wrote to help you out. Feel free to route this around to friends, family members, etc., but just make sure to include the credit listed at the bottom of this article.
How to Find an Open-Minded, Sugar-Savvy Doctor & Nutritionist
By Connie Bennett
Annoyed because your M.D. thinks your so-called “sugar addiction” is all “in your head”?
Feeling frustrated because you can’t find a physician who understands the incredible power and value of good nutrition?
Feeling hopeless about finding a doctor who "gets it"? Fear no more.
Plenty of open-minded, nutritionally savvy medical practitioners are available to help you—whether you’re hooked on sugar or suspect you have hypoglycemia, diabetes, pre-diabetes, problems, gluten intolerance, and more.
And, if you’re thinking of kicking or even cutting back on your consumption of sweets and quickie carbs, it’s really smart to see a doctor to guide your progress.
Because people complain that they’re having problems finding someone who takes their sugar habit seriously, I researched and wrote this to help you out.
First off, you should know that in the United States, Canada and Great Britain, you can choose from among hundreds of thousands of mainstream and alternative practitioners, who are generally knowledgeable, open-minded physicians with additional education in nutrition.
Now, before you pick a doctor, do your homework. Make sure that your physician is well trained, competent, caring, sensitive to your needs, and educated about blood sugar-related issues such as hypoglycemia.
And, as humorist Erma Bombeck used to quip, “Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.”
Here, then, is a list of organizations, which can offer names of M.D.s or other medical practitioners.
1650 Tiburon Boulevard
Tiburon, CA 94920 USA
Phone (800) 515-4325
AlternativeMedicine.org bills itself as “the leading alternative medicine content provider” in the United States. Founded in 1990. Also operates a radio show, magazine and book division. Offers an online, searchable “Find a Practitioner” database.
American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM)
7701 East Kellogg, Suite 625
Wichita, Kansas 67207
Phone (316) 684-5500
Formed in 1965, the American Academy of Environmental Medicine is an organization of physicians trained to recognize environmentally triggered illnesses. Doctors examine outside factors that can have adverse effects on health, including diet, inhalants, chemicals, radiation, heat, cold, humidity, and more. Maintains an online database of “Referable Physicians.” Referred doctors are AAEM members, who’ve completed additional training and passed the Academy’s board examination.
American Academy of Osteopathy
3500 DePauw Boulevard, Suite 1080
Indianapolis, IN 46268
Phone (317) 879-1881
The American Academy of Osteopathy is dedicated to advancing osteopathic medicine, which focuses on “treating the whole person, not just the symptoms." Members are either osteopathic physicians (Doctors of Osteopathy, or D.O.s) or M.D.s with an interest in osteopathy, including the art and science of osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT). Maintains an online “Find a Physician” searchable database.
American Association of Naturopathic Physicians (AANP)
3201 New Mexico Avenue, NW Suite 350
Washington, DC 20016
Phone (202) 895-1392 or (866) 538-2267 (toll free)
Founded in 1985, the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians is a national society that promotes treatment strategies that combine traditional medical science with therapeutic nutrition, botanical medicine, homeopathy, classical Chinese medicine, hydrotherapy, and naturopathic manipulative therapy. Offers an online “Looking for a Naturopathic Physician” database.
American College for Advancement in Medicine (ACAM)
23121 Verdugo Drive, Suite 204
Laguna Hills, CA 92653
Phone (949) 583-7666 or (800) 532-3688
The non-profit ACAM is an alternative healthcare medical society, with nearly 1,000 physicians (M.D.s and D.O.s) from 30 nations. Founded in 1973, it is dedicated to educating physicians about complementary and alternative medicine. Provides online “Doctor Search” database. You also can get the Physicians Referral List by sending an SASE with 99 cents postage to ACAM, P.O. Box 3427, Laguna Hills, CA 92654.
American Holistic Health Association (AHHA)
P.O. Box 17400
Anaheim, CA 92817-7400
Phone (714) 779-6152
Founded in 1989, the American Holistic Health Association is a consumer-education group dedicated “to promoting holistic principles: honoring the whole person (mind, body and spirit) and encouraging people to actively participate in their own health and healthcare.” Offers extensive online “Resource & Referral Lists,” which includes information about holistic doctors and how to locate treatment options.
American Holistic Medical Association (AHMA)
12101 Menaul Blvd. Northeast, Suite C
Albuquerque, NM 87112
Phone (505) 292-7788
The American Holistic Medical Association, founded in 1978, is a membership organization for nearly 1,000 licensed health care professionals (M.D.s, D.O.s, and more) who practice holistic medicine, which is the art and science of healing that addresses the whole person – body, mind, and spirit. Maintains an online “Physician Referral Directory.” A bound, printed copy of “Doctor Finder” is available for $15 by writing to the address listed. To read, “How to Choose a Holistic Practitioner,” see http://holisticmedicine.org/public/pub_selecting.shtml.
The Institute for Functional Medicine
4411 Pt. Fosdick Drive NW, Suite 305
P.O. Box 1697
Gig Harbor, WA 98335
Phone (800) 228-0622
Fax (253) 853-6766
The Institute of Functional Medicine seeks to improve patients’ health through prevention, early assessment, and comprehensive management of complex, chronic disease. Functional medicine is a science-based field of health care that emphasizes “patient care” rather than “disease care.” Functional medicine specialists examine core clinical imbalances that underlie various disease conditions, which could arise out of diet, exercise, and trauma. Maintains an online FM Practitioner Search database at www.functionalmedicine.org/findfmphysician/form.asp
Life Extension Foundation (LEF)
1100 W. Commercial Blvd.
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33309
Phone (954) 766-8433 or (800) 544-4440
Officially incorporated in 1980, the Life Extension Foundation is a non-profit organization which seeks to radically extend the healthy human lifespan. Maintains an online “Directory of Innovative Physicians.”
How to Choose & Approach Your New Doctor
Even though you’re getting referrals, you need to make sure that you find the right M.D. for you – one who has the right mix of qualities you need. Here are some other tips excerpted and condensed from The Do’s and Don’ts of Hypoglycemia by Roberta Ruggiero, founder and president of the Hypoglycemia Support Foundation.
Choose a physician carefully – and preferably not during an emergency situation.
When you call the doctor’s office, ask:
• Do you treat hypoglycemia, pre-diabetes, or diabetes?
• How do you test for it? (A 5-hour Glucose Tolerance Test could be helpful.)
• Do you provide nutritional counseling? Or can refer me to someone who does?
• What is your consultation fee, and do you accept insurance?
Learn about your potential new doctor by asking people or doing research online.
When you go to your new doctor, bring a symptoms list and medical records.
Don’t be intimidated by your doctor. He or she is there to help you.
Bring a diet/symptom diary, which should include a list of everything you’ve eaten or medication you’ve taken in the past 5 to 7 days, as well as the times you ate and any symptoms or reactions afterwards.
Prepare a list of questions, and don’t hesitate to ask them.
Write down any instructions you receive.
Discuss a complete prevention program.
Discuss your concerns.
Be specific and to the point.
Get a second opinion, especially if you’re not satisfied with your first physician.
Don’t forget that many trustworthy physicians are out there.
How to Find a Nutritionist
When searching for a knowledgeable nutritionist, make sure to ask ample questions ahead of time to confirm that the nutritionist or dietitian has experience working with sugar addicts, hypoglycemics, and diabetics. Before meeting with that person, make sure that he or she agrees with the point of view that it’s best to avoid sweets or simple carbs either totally or to a large extent. In addition to going through the organizations listed below, you may be be able to find a good nutritionist by getting a referral from your local health food store. Again, always first verify the person’s references and point of view.
American Dietetic Association
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, Illinois 60606-6995
Phone 1 (800) 877-1600
Maintains a searchable database of dieticians by zip code.
An extensive online database where you can find nutritionists, acupuncturists, certified personal trainers, dentists, chiropractors, herbalists, homeopaths, massage therapists, medical doctors, naturopaths, osteopaths, registered dietitians, registered nurses, Ph.D.s, and pharmacists. FindANutritionist.com was founded in 1999 by Designs for Health, which produces a line of nutritional supplements and provides nutrition training.
International and American Associations of Clinical Nutritionists (IAACN)
15280 Addison Road, Suite 130
Addison, Texas 75001
Phone (972) 407-9089
Founded in 1983 as a Florida state organization, the International and American Associations of Clinical Nutritionists (IAACN) is a professional association
of practicing clinical nutritionists in many health care professions. Call for a nutritionist referral.
Connie Bennett is an ex “sugar addict” and “Sugar Shrew No More!,” who helps folks worldwide stomp out their sugar habit. She is author of SUGAR SHOCK! (Jan. 2007); founder of The 21-Day, Kick-Sugar Countdown Diet™; creator of the SUGAR SHOCK! Blog; a holistic health counselor; and a journalist, who’s contributed to The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, TV Guide, The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Living Fit, US, InStyle and cbs.com. To get tips and learn about Connie’s tele-seminars with experts, sign up for the free Stop SUGAR SHOCK! e-zine.
Feel free to publish this article elsewhere, but make sure to include the following information: Copyright © 2006, Connie Bennett, Stop SUGAR SHOCK!™, www.SugarShockBlog.com