“Before you examine the body of a patient, be patient to learn his story. For once you learn his story, you will also come to know his body.”
~ Suzy Kassem
The Short Answer
Yes, they exist, but they are a rare breed. I searched long and hard, scouring websites and directories, polling my readers and fellow autoimmune bloggers. When I first published this post back in 2015, I had only found 25. Since then, the list has doubled, and it continues to grow. Last updated 10/27/20.
What Do I Mean By Paleo-Friendly?
They don’t need to prescribe the paleo diet and lifestyle to their patients. This list would be much shorter if that was the requirement. They simply need to be open to the idea that diet and lifestyle does impact autoimmune health. They need to respect our efforts. I’m hoping this rare group of autoimmune specialists will grow in numbers, as they see more and more patients improve through the paleo diet and lifestyle.
What This List is Not
Many of us see functional medicine practitioners either alongside, or in place of, conventional autoimmune specialist MDs. Some examples are health and nutrition coaches, naturopaths, chiropractors, acupuncturists, and even some general practice MDs who specialize in functional or integrative medicine. They are valued members of our medical team, and you can find them relatively easily by searching the directories I’ve already published on this blog. The article I’m writing today, and the list I hope will grow, is a very different group of doctors.
What Do I Mean By Autoimmune Specialist MD?
People with autoimmune disease often still need to see a conventionally trained autoimmune specialist MD, even if they’re following the paleo diet and lifestyle. We might need monitoring of our condition, certain tests and procedures, and sometimes medication, because not everyone achieves a medication-free remission. The challenge, as patients, is having to face the doubts of these doctors when we try to explain the steps we are taking to maximize our autoimmune health. Most rheumatologists, neurologists, gastroenterologists, endocrinologists, etc. believe that diet and lifestyle choices don’t matter. It’s not uncommon for patients to be dismissed and disrespected for believing otherwise. My goal with this article is to create a growing list of the rare breed of autoimmune specialist MD, who can see that diet and lifestyle can play a powerful complementary role in treating autoimmune disease.
40+ Paleo-Friendly Autoimmune Specialist MDs
Listed alphabetically by US state, with international doctors at the bottom of the list
- Dr. Paul Howard, Rheumatologist in Scottsdale, AZ
- Dr. Marvin Singh, Gastroenterologist in Encinitas, CA
- Dr. Eric Buxton, Endocrinologist in Greenbrae, CA
- Dr. Gauree Konijeti, Gastroenterologist in La Jolla, CA
- Dr. Joanne Seunghee Kang, Rheumatologist in Riverside, CA
- Dr. Melissa McNamara, Rheumatologist in San Ramon, CA
- Dr. Jeffrey Dunn, Neurologist in Stanford, CA
- Dr. Jerold Share, Endocrinologist in Washington, DC
- Dr. Roland Shepherd, Gastroenterologist in Tampa, FL
- Dr. Anne Szpindor, Immunologist in South Barrington, IL
- Dr. Chad Potteiger, Gastroenterologist in Evansville, IN
- Dr. Prabhakar Swaroop, Gastroenterologist in Hutchinson, KS
- Dr. Timothy E. McAlindon, Rheumatologist in Boston, MA
- Dr. Lucille Shore-Schein, Rheumatologist in Cambridge, MA
- Dr. Ginette Okoye, Dermatologist in Baltimore, MD
- Dr. Robynne Chutkan, Gastroenterologist in Chevy Chase, MD
- Dr. James Dowd, Rheumatologist in Brighton, MI
- Dr. Carolyn Bowles, Rheumatologist in Edina, MN
- Dr. Kenneth Sharlin, Neurologist in Springfield, MO
- Dr. Singaravelu Jagadeesan, Neurologist in Cary, NC
- Dr. Brian Fay, Rheumatologist in Grand Island, NE
- Dr. Aly Cohen, Rheumatologist in Princeton, NJ
- Dr. Alan Dattner, Dermatologist in New Rochelle, NY
- Dr. Weijia Yuan, Rheumatologist in New York City, NY
- Dr. Luke Weber, Gastroenterologist in Cleveland, OH
- Dr. Shawn Macalaster, Rheumatologist in Hillsboro, OR
- Dr. Jessica Yoon, Dermatologist in Portland, OR
- Dr. Hien Tran, Endocrinologist in Austin, TX
- Dr. Doug Crumpler, Endocrinologist in College Station, TX
- Dr. Elizabeth Odstrcil, Gastroenterologist in Dallas, TX
- Dr. Carl Frank, Gastroenterologist in Georgetown, TX
- Dr. Dian Ginsberg, Gynecologist/PCOS Specialist in Houston, TX
- Dr. Kathleen Hands, Endocrinologist in San Antonio, TX
- Dr. Kristin Bussey-Smith, Rheumatologist in San Antonio, TX
- Dr. Jeffery Feinstein, Rheumatologist in San Antonio, TX
- Dr. Emily Pineda, Rheumatologist in San Antonio, TX
- Dr. Rashel Haverkorn, Urologist/Interstitial Cystitis Specialist in San Antonio, TX
- Dr. Bikram Bal, Gastroenterologist in Farmville, VA
- Dr. Scott Lee, Gastroenterologist in Seattle, WA
- Dr. Zachary Bush, Endocrinologist in Charlottesville, VA
- Dr. Philip Moberg, Rheumatologist in Seattle, WA
- Dr. Catherine Lee, Rheumatologist in Spokane, WA
- Dr. Kevin Lee, Endocrinologist in Brisbane, Australia
- Dr. Daniel Lewis, Rheumatologist in Melbourne, Australia
- Dr. Paul Bird, Rheumatologist in Sydney, Australia
- Dr. Jessica Haussmann, Gastroenterologist in Calgary, Canada
- Dr. G. L. Morris, Rheumatologist in Calgary, Canada
- Dr. Kam Shojania, Rheumatologist in Vancouver, Canada
- Dr. Abbi Lulsegged, Endocrinologist in London, UK
Before Recommending a Doctor For This List
Please read the “What This List is Not” section above. Functional Medicine and Integrative MDs are already listed in other directories. This list is specifically the rheumatologists, endocrinologists, dermatologists, gastroenterologists, etc. who are open to paleo as a complementary approach. If you know one of those, please share below.
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Credit: image at top of page from George Hodan via Public Domain Pictures.