She’s a regular guest on TV shows, like Dr. Oz and TODAY, and she’s even been on CNN. She authors best-selling books, including What Doctors Eat and The 21-Day Belly Fix, serves as a health expert to Mom Corps and Cancer Treatment Centers of America, and is an assistant professor in preventative and integrative medicine at Emory University — all while growing her successful practice at The Atlanta Center for Holistic and Integrative Medicine. If there’s anyone who understands the challenge of keeping balance and perspective in a hectic world, it’s Dr. Tasneem Bhatia (Dr. Taz). Dr. Taz recently welcomed us into her home to chat about her mission to address myriad health issues and to show us some of the ways she’s taking her own advice. Welcome, Dr. Taz!
When did you first become interested in holistic medicine?
I first became interested in holistic medicine when my own health started declining. I was losing my hair, having irregular cycles and had terrible acne. I did not get a lot of answers from the regular doctors, so I started studying on my own and found this whole world of medicine.
What led you to establish a clinic that integrates holistic methods with traditional Western medical treatment?
As I continued to study, many people who knew what I was up to began asking me health questions for their issues. This encouraged me to continue studying, and after doing the Fellowship in Integrative Medicine in Arizona, I had the confidence to start my own practice.
Why do you think these concepts are becoming more widely used?
I think people are getting frustrated by the lack of coordination and the limited options in the conventional medical systems. I think the side effects of medications have scared many people into looking for natural alternatives.
Do you have a professional mentor? What’s been a powerful piece of advice for you?
I think all my great teachers have been my mentors — Dr. Weil, Dr. Oz and Dr. Low Dog, to name a few. I think everyone has just been positive and encouraging, and forced me to believe in myself and be confident!
There’s an epidemic of “busyness,” and stress seems to be the common ailment we all share. If you could only give one recommendation for reducing or preventing stress, what would that be?
Schedule your relaxation time! I do. I try to have at least two to three hours of downtime per week — I will get acupuncture, massage or just relax.
How did the concept for The 21-Day Belly Fix develop?
You know, I see so many patients, and no matter what their issues, I end up talking about their digestive system. This is common to Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine, where the gut is the root of medical illness and disease.
You’re a huge fan of juicing. What’s your go-to juice or smoothie recipe?
I love my green smoothies — kale, apple, banana and frozen berries! Just add water and tons of energy to go.
Do you have a favorite breakfast dish or an afternoon snack that you find to be a natural energy booster?
My favorite breakfast is a protein smoothie, an egg and a rice cake with coconut or olive oil. In the afternoon, I depend on my green smoothies.
Please help us all feel a little better … surely you have a guilty pleasure food for a splurge.
Yes, I love ice cream and chocolate. You may catch me indulging at my mother’s Baskin-Robbins or the Buckhead Diner!
Which movie always cracks you up?
Movies … I have trouble sitting through a movie, but This is 40 had me on the floor!
What’s something we may be surprised to know about you?
I love country music and any Latin music or dancing!
Tell us your most trusted beauty secret and/or mandatory beauty product.
I will soak my hair in warm coconut oil at night and sleep in it — it forces me to relax, and my hair glows the next day.
As a native Atlantan, what are some of your favorite places for shopping and dining?
Did you make a New Year’s resolution for 2015?
Yes — 2015 is about reconnecting with myself. I want to restart my yoga routine and find better mental balance. The last five years have been a whirlwind, and I know it’s time to recalibrate!
Name three things you just cannot live without — other than faith, family and friends:
- Hot tea in the morning
- Warm milk at night
- Any type of music
Dr. Taz, we should all follow your lead and “recalibrate” for 2015. We appreciate you sharing your stress-control tips with us, and thank you for giving us a nudge and for championing the healthy, whole self!