Written Apr 11th, 2016 by Franco Varriano
Practitioner Spotlight: Dr. Jerald Duggar, D.C.
This is a blog series profiling the philosophies, practices, and work spaces of integrative health professionals. This week we spoke with Dr. Jerald Duggar, D.C.
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF
My name is Dr. Jerald Duggar and I’m a licensed Chiropractic Physician specializing in the integration of functional movement and functional medicine. I am the owner and clinic director of I Am Wellness Holistic Health Center. I’ve been helping people improve energy, decrease pain, lose weight, balance hormones, heal their digestion and safely detoxify their bodies since 1998.
Describe your path to becoming a practitioner.
I graduated Magna Cum Laude from Life University, School of Chiropractic in 1998 and moved back to my home town of Bountiful Utah to be near family and friends. Although my practice began as a traditional, musculoskeletal-focused chiropractic office, I realized quite quickly that due to the overwhelming burden of stressors and toxins that my patients were being constantly exposed to, they needed a much more comprehensive and holistic approach in order to really get well. It was at that time that I began to incorporate massage, detoxification, nutrition and eventually functional laboratory testing into my practice and I have been on that educational journey ever since. We run a 100% cash practice that is completely referral driven. Other than the efforts we make to build social awareness through our YouTube channel, Facebook and our clinic website (www.iamwellness.com) and my personal website (www.drduggar.com) we do little other traditional marketing.
Why functional medicine?
Over the years I’ve talked to thousands of people who are frustrated with how they feel and frustrated with how they have been treated by traditional medicine. They know that the underlying causes of why their health is going downhill has many factors but when they go to the doctor, they only get 5 minutes of the doctor’s time and a prescription for a symptom suppressing drug. They have been searching for a doctor who will listen to them and who will help them put the pieces of their health puzzle back together.
Medicine has tried to convince us that health equals the absence of symptoms and that all you need to do to eliminate symptoms is to take a pill. They’ve convinced millions of people that drugs solve problems but with the health challenges we are facing today like obesity, diabetes, cancer, infertility, low energy and heart disease, drug therapy isn’t producing good results. This huge misconception, that we’re healthy until we get a symptom and that when we take a drug to make the symptom go away, we are healthy again, is robbing so many people of the vitality and happiness that they deserve.
The new model of functional medicine is breaking this misconception apart and resetting our understanding of health and the processes that create disease in our bodies. Millions of people need this new model of health care. Whether we are talking about weight loss, digestive problems, hormone issues, fatigue, depression or chronic pain, the thought process is similar and although the details are very individualized, the basic framework of healing is the same.
What are your favourite blogs, books or information sources?
I have been a long time follower of Dr. Dan Kalish DC, Dr. Mark Hyman MD, and Dr. Tom O’Bryan DC. I regularly listen to Dr. Chris Kresser LAC as well as Sean Croxton of Underground Wellness. I enjoy participating in many of the popular functional medicine summits as well.
Something people don’t know about you?
When I’m not working, you’ll usually find me on the golf course or singing. I sing with an internationally acclaimed choral group called the Salt Lake Vocal Artists. Check us out on YouTube!
What tools and software do you use at your clinic?
We are big proponents of utilizing technology to deliver better care to our patients. Services like Fullscript have allowed us to reduce our in-office inventory to a small number of acute care products without sacrificing the nutritional needs of our very diverse cases. In addition, we have created our own proprietary group wellness programs that are delivered through an online membership portal at my personal website, www.drduggar.com.
I also use a powerful electronic health record software called Chirotouch. It is designed specifically for the chiropractic profession but is flexible enough to work well in an integrated, functional medicine practice as well.
Any advice for new grads?
I would strongly recommend that new grads start to build their practice with the capacity to thrive online as well as in their brick and mortar office. Keeping overhead low and utilizing software will allow them to keep profitable.