Drs Ian and Ruth Gawler
We offer realistic hope through teaching and supporting the implementation of self-help techniques that are practical and evidence based and lead to inner peace and life extension.
What qualifications does Ian have?
Ian began his working life as a Veterinarian, having qualified BVSc from the University of Melbourne in 1972 . Later he completed a Masters in Counselling and Human Services at La Trobe University (MCouns HS) in 1999. He has attended countless conferences, trainings and workshops around the world and has studied extensively in Lifestyle Medicine and Mindbody Medicine. He has had two main meditation mentors: Dr Ainslie Meares and the late great Tibetan Teacher Sogyal Rinpoche.
What do we recommend and why?
What is Lifestyle Medicine?
Do we still practise professionally?
We are interested in preventing illness and being really well. What about wellbeing?
What is with the kaftan?
Does Ian "practice what he preaches"?
What can Ian and Ruth help with?
What diet do Ian and Ruth recommend and why?
What is Integrative Medicine?
Good medicine has always taken into account the whole person – body, emotions, mind and spirit. In fact, medical history will probably regard it as a bit of an oddity that for a time towards the end of the last century, some doctors and members of the public approached health and healing in a mechanical way, focusing upon the isolated systems and organs in the body only, as if the whole body, emotions, mind and spirit were not involved.
Yet everyone knows that if you are feeling stressed, you are much more likely to pick up a cold or the flu. After a good holiday, when you are feeling at peace with yourself and the world, you are usually immune to just about everything!
So these days we talk of integrative medicine – medicine that consciously addresses the whole person. Just like good medicine has always done. Integrative medicine has been defined as the blending of conventional and natural/complementary medicines and/or therapies with the aim of using the most appropriate of either or both modalities to care for the patient as a whole. Integrative Medicine considers the person’s body, emotions, mind and spirit. Integrative Medicine is open to integrating the services of a wide range of health practitioners and modalities in a way that is often described as Holistic Medicine.
Integrative medicine has a broad view. It is interested in how our body is affected by our environmental and our emotional and mental state. It is concerned with matters of the heart and spirit, knowing that issues that affect our sense of purpose and meaning in life can affect our health dramatically. Integrative medicine is also interested in complementary therapies and self-help techniques. The widespread acceptance of acupuncture and meditation shows how much medicine has opened to new possibilities. Complementary therapies often involve more natural methods. In fact recent research shows that both Americans and Australians spend more of their own money on complementary than orthodox medical therapies.
Many doctors, especially GPs, are responding to this by studying or practising complementary medicine. Also, many of these therapies, such as naturopathy, Traditional Chinese Medicine, homeopathy, herbalism, acupuncture and many others, are offered by non-medical practitioners.
When choosing an IM practitioner to help you, it is always wise to consider their qualifications and experience. Personal recommendations are very helpful. Always regard your first visit to a new practitioner as an exploratory one – chance to explain your history, be assessed, and for you to assess the practitioner. Only proceed if you feel confident in the practitioner and their advice.
Is what we do "Alternative Medicine"?
Definitely not – in the way this question is normally asked!
It is important to understand that when it comes to alternative medicine there are two types:
- Proven Alternative Medicine which includes alternative medical systems such as Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda. These alternative medical systems represent a different paradigm of health care when compared to Conventional Western Medicine. They have long proven histories in their own cultural contexts. These are not things we are directly involved with, although we do respect them.
- Unproven Alternative Medicine – sometimes described as Unorthodox, Unconventional or Unproven Medicine and or therapies. This generally describes medical interventions that are not widely taught at medical school, not generally provided at hospitals and are outside peer accepted mainstream medicine. Examples include aromatherapy, intravenous chelation and ozone therapy. Again, we are not involved in providing these types of treatments.