Dr. Frank Lipman

By
Photography Robbie Fimmano

Published January 7, 2012

Before the organic craze, before Bikram became hip, before Hollywood embraced juice fasts, there was Dr. Frank Lipman, who was an early advocate for combining traditional Western medical practices with acupuncture, Chinese herbs, yoga, and nutrition. “When I graduated from medical school, I went to work in the bush in Africa,” recalls the 57-year-old South African–born wellness expert from his spacious New York office. “People were coming in with problems I couldn’t address, but the traditional healer could. It opened my eyes—if I really wanted to help my patients, I had to explore other modalities.” Dr. Lipman, whose clients have included Gwyneth Paltrow, Kevin Bacon, and Donna Karan, eventually developed a regimen designed to introduce patients to his East-meets-West lifestyle: his Be Well cleanse program, which asks participants to cut out sugar, gluten, caffeine, and alcohol with the help of nutritional supplements that he makes from a cocktail that includes vitamins and rejuvenating herbs. The benefits—increased energy, reduced stress, and weight loss—may sound similar to those achieved via more traditional pill-popping, but the key lies in the natural ingredients. “Initially, I was considered a heretic,” says Dr. Lipman. “Now, I’m not even alternative. I’m on the forefront, and I’m leading a wellness revolution.”

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