How to Support Your Child’s Healing Journey with Dr. Ali Lankerani on The Healers Café with Dr. Manon Bolliger, ND
In this episode of The Healers Café, Dr. Manon Bolliger, ND, chats with Dr. Ali Lankerani, The Parent Whisperer, is internationally published & best-selling author, twice-voted as one of America’s Top Doctors, hosts the TV channel Role Model Maker, has additional training in Chiropractic Medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture.
Highlights from today’s episode include:
Dr. L Of course, there’s difficulty in dealing with children who have learning disabilities. And in that process, you know, their parenting and the parent relationship is strained. The spouse or relationship is strained as far as the approach to how to deal with the situation, finances are strained. So I didn’t want the families to go through what I went through, and I want it to be more on the prevention side of things.
The limitations in practice were number one related to, first of all, how I could practice the scope of practice, what you’re allowed to do, what you’re allowed to say. You go to school, and after you get your diploma, you would think that you’re qualified now to go and help people. And then comes the state and the local legislation, the federal legislation, so you go through those hoops, and then there is insurance. And you have to keep jumping through these hoops, to kind of prove yourself that you’re capable and qualified enough to help people.
About Dr L
Dr. Ali Lankerani, affectionately known by his patients as Dr. L, The Parent Whisperer, is a clinical neuroscientist with a background in chiropractic medicine. Dr. L currently runs online programs that support parents and their children and encourages healthy, growing relationships between them.
Dr. L is internationally published & best-selling author, was twice-voted as one of America’s Top Doctors, hosts the TV channel Role Model Maker, has additional training in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture and ran an award-winning private practice helping kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Dr. L’s mission is to promote brain-based healthcare options to support the safety, health, education and productivity of parents and their children to foster their optimum potential and their quest for personal fulfillment.
Dr. L stands strong for the acceptance and fulfillment of every human being’s potential, and rallies against oppression, inequality, and ignorance. He is passionate about improving himself personally and takes to heart his part in making the world a better place for future generations. His ultimate desire and mission in life is to leave a legacy to further the fostering of our children’s potential.
Dr. L enjoys being the active father of his two Amazing Kids and proudly serves as the founder of Amazing Parents’ Network. You can find him regularly speaking at a variety of venues nationwide and internationally on subjects within his passions including health, lifestyle, and personal as well as child development.
Core purpose/passion: Optimizing Humanity's potential by optimizing brain function
About Dr. Manon Bolliger, ND:
Dr. Manon is a Naturopathic Doctor, the Founder of Bowen College, an International Speaker, she did a TEDx talk “Your Body is Smarter than you think. Why aren’t you Listening?” in Jan 2021, and is the author of Amazon best-selling books “What Patient’s Don’t Say if Doctors Don’t Ask”. & “A Healer in Every Household” For more great information to go to her weekly blog: http://bowencollege.com/blog.
For tips on health & healing go to: https://www.drmanonbolliger.com/tips
About The Healers Café:
Dr. Manon’s show is the #1 show for medical practitioners and holistic healers to have heart to heart conversations about their day to day lives.
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Welcome to the Healers Cafe. Conversations of health and healing with Dr. Manon.
Dr. Manon 00:16
Welcome to the Healers Cafe and today I have with me, Dr. Ali Lankerani. I will just tell you a little bit about him. He is affectionately known by his patients as Dr. L, the parent whisper. And he is a clinical neuroscientist with a background in chiropractic medicine. Dr. L currently runs online programs that support parents and their children and encourages healthy growing relationships between them. Dr. L is an internationally published and best-selling author, was twice voted as one of America’s top doctors, hosts the TV channel “Role Model Maker” has additional training in traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture, and ran an award-winning private practice helping kids with autism spectrum disorder. And I’m going to leave it at that and just say hello, and welcome. And then you can put us completely up to date. What else? I know you’re a TEDx speaker, as well.
Dr. L 01:27
We would spend the whole time actually talking about those things. So let’s just move on. I appreciate it. Thank you for the introduction. I’m honored to be here. And I appreciate the time that our audience has carved out of their busy schedule to be with us as well.
Dr. Manon 01:43
So my very first question for you, because I’m always curious, is what got you interested in this field? And what was it like…Did you know the moment you were born?
Dr. L 01:57
The story started basically when I was a child, actually, and it’s not that I knew what I was doing, to this day I don’t know what I am doing. I actually grew up with ADHD, before there was a diagnosis for ADHD. I was not an easy child. So I apologize to parents and teachers alike out there that have to deal with the likes of me. And I thank you for your patience and your kindness in basically helping us grow and develop and lead lives that are fulfilling, and allow us to share our message with the world. So that’s how I started and then it’s amazing that I lasted in academia for as long as I did, got my post-doctorate in neurodevelopmental disorders. And eventually, I did my private practice, but then I realized, the funny thing is that the success of the practice became its own ending. It made me realize that I could serve in a bigger way, and I didn’t want to be confined in the brick-and-mortar office. And the other part of it is the healthcare system was preventing me from practicing the way I’m trained. And also, because of what I experienced growing up, I could identify both with the parents as well as the children. And the children were coming to me at 6, 7,10,11,12 years old. And they already knew that they were different than those around them. And they were internalizing it as if there’s something wrong with them. Of course, there’s difficulty in ….
dealing with children who have learning disabilities. And in that process, you know, their parenting and the parent relationship is strained. The spouse or relationship is strained as far as the approach to how to deal with the situation, finances are strained. So I didn’t want the families to go through what I went through, and I want it to be more on the prevention side of things. So these are some of the things that prompted me to step away from private practice. And of course, everybody questioned my sanity. I had an identity crisis that if I’m a physician, I’m not seeing patients then what kind of a doctor am I? So that’s basically where it started. But moving forward, I had a wonderful sabbatical. Because my son was arriving. And for a couple of years, I helped pretty much raise him for those early two years. And then eventually I got back into the field and started working with young adults again. I really wanted to kind of really start on the prevention side of things. So I created this online space, where I started working with new and expecting parents, and that kind of led me up to where I am today with my company role model maker, where we’re trying to support all parents of children, preteen years basically. Lead by example, and have their children lead a happy, healthy, and thriving life.
Dr. Manon 05:02
So tell me, you mentioned the limitations in your practice. I mean, there’s two components. One is that you actually have prevention and messages that you can reach much larger people than the one-on-one practice. But what other limitations did you find in practice? I mean, because we’re at a time where many doctors are, questioning and considering what they really need to be doing, especially in the States. Right? So what were some examples of limitations?
Dr. L 05:42
Okay, that’s a great question. The limitations in practice were number one related to, first of all, how I could practice the scope of practice, what you’re allowed to do, what you’re allowed to say. You go to school, and after you get your diploma, you would think that you’re qualified now to go and help people. And then comes the state and the local legislation, the federal legislation, so you go through those hoops, and then there is insurance. And you have to keep jumping through these hoops, to kind of prove yourself that you’re capable and qualified enough to help people. And it doesn’t seem to ever end because then after you get all of this, when you go to start working with patients, then you’ll have to ask permission every step of the way. And then your approach also becomes affected as well, because depending on who you’re working with, some people might allow you and recommend that you do certain therapies and other ones might not recommend that. So it’s kind of like trying to practice what you were trained to do, without really having both of your hands available to you to be able to do that. So I got tired of having to prove myself. I got tired of knowing how to help people, but not being able to fully do that. And then lastly, the other part of it is that we all know this as practitioners, there’s many different sides to a person’s life, it’s not just the medical and the physical, and the diagnosis. There is the social, there’s a spiritual, there is a psychological there is financial, literally, all of these things come together to create this whole person. And it’s difficult for a doctor who has been trained in just one area to address all these other components that they never had any training for. So like when it comes to running the business when it comes to dealing with the insurance when it comes to the finances of the patients when it comes to cultural stigmas that the patient has to live in. So all of those things have to come in their restrictions and the limitations as far as what their availability is because of responsibilities to family. So the list kind of goes on, and I realized that the best way that I personally could serve was by seeing that light bulb go on in the patient’s minds, because once they understood the bigger picture of how their body works, and how they could go ahead and empower themselves and make differences and changes in their lives, then they naturally and automatically would go and seek the right solutions for themselves instead of me having to drag them along and convince everybody else along the way.
Dr. Manon 08:29
I appreciate what you’re saying. It’s very well lived as well, and by many doctors, I have interviewed too. Just to throw this in because it’s actually happening right now in Canada. In Ontario, the medical doctors are being forced not to be able to do or refer any cam therapies which are complementary alternative medicine. And as you know, doctors don’t have, as part of their training, any knowledge in nutrition. Usually about 11 hours, on average from everything. So some doctors are becoming well aware that that’s important. So they’ve done their work on it, and now they can’t go that route. So it’s like they’re being held by the pharmaceutical companies as this is basically you’re our product and you’re going to know how to do things this way. Whereas I think, many people in the profession are waking up to exactly what you’re saying. We are dealing with a whole person, and a whole person has so many aspects so I feel for what you’re saying. And even in our naturopathic system, they’re doing the same thing.
Dr. L 09:55
I actually had a conversation…I actually held a small conference at Kennedy Krieger Institute in Johns Hopkins. And that was one of the things that I was talking about when I see patients coming in and when they’re getting desperate because we don’t have all the solutions, one field never has all the solutions. One specialty doesn’t have all the solutions. But if you don’t know what other solutions are out there, to offer it, these people who get desperate, are willing to go out there and try anything. And in that process, they can hurt themselves, they can get victimized by other things that don’t necessarily serve their best interests. So patient education is important. But also the education on the physician side becomes very important to know which options to offer. Just simply what you were exposed to going to school is now just not enough basically,
Dr. Manon 10:55
As we have more and more people that are looking things up, you know, Dr. Google, he’s not always the best doctor, but it does cause another issue here because there is some information and even though we have lots of censorship now, it’s not necessarily censoring the right thing. And I don’t believe in censorship anyways, like, you do have to be buyer beware. But I do think it’s so important that doctors come on board, and generally say, “Oh, I have heard about this or that, let’s keep in touch”. And some of them are saying, “Well, try it, and we’ll see”, and not close the door. Because so many people leave their doctors or physicians because they’re close-minded. And then like you say, there’s the risk of doing things that make absolutely no sense. So it’s a real problem. So now you’ve gotten yourself out of that rat hole, or whatever you say in English, I don’t know the expression. So now you’re able to work. So what’s different? Like, what are you able to do? And what are you doing now?
Dr. L 12:19
So now, I stepped outside of the traditional healthcare field. And I always say this tongue in cheek, because when I go online, I am not offering medical advice. And I understand that, and I mention that to people. So even though I have the type name, the title of the doctor, they need to be very aware that what I’m recommending to them is not necessarily medical advice. Having said that, though, what it has done, what it has given me is open up the channels to connect with patients beyond the doctor-patient relationship that used to exist in the clinic. And this was interesting because first I was sharing my knowledge and understanding and teaching them how the body works. And I realized that part of the whole doctor-patient relationship thing had caused me to always maintain this barrier between myself, who I am, and my patients. And in the process now that that scenario, that clinical setting no longer exists, it is difficult for me to leave the institution behind, leave the clinical setting behind, and work in a different relationship with the patients. Because working in an online environment, what is valued is authenticity, the genuineness, and knowing what you stand for. And one of the things that happens to us as we are going through extensive education is that you’re constantly putting your wants and needs and desires and ways that you want to live life on hold, right? Because you got to finish the degree. And then after that is a specialty and the sub-specialty, it just goes on and on. Yeah, this whole delayed gratification. So the trouble becomes that we become disconnected from who we are, what we are about, what we love. And that was one of the things in the last, like when I was going home, having had an awesome day in the clinic one of the days. I’m like, wow, I helped so many people and I made a difference. And then it just hit me so why am I not on cloud nine. And that was the beginning of this whole journey that kind of led me to here, that I realized that I didn’t want to begin and end with I’m the town doctor. My life is bigger than that. And I wanted to show up in my full life, not the part that has already taken so many decades of my life, to begin with. So in that quest, I came into this online world, initially sharing my knowledge and expertise, and trying to support parents. And as you know, one of the things that has happened during the past few months is I came to the realization that yet again, I need to hone in my focus, and hone in my passions that much more. Sharpen it, so that I can get even more targeted as far as what I really want to do and how I want to leave my legacy. So in that process, I’m kind of stepping away from the parents and supporting the parents and more towards the children and ensuring that they are raised optimally, which is what I always wanted to do. But somehow the ADHD must keep kicking in or so and I get sidetracked.
Dr. Manon 15:54
Well, I appreciate that it’s the children but to reach the children, don’t you have to go through the parents?
Dr. L 16:03
And that was one of the big realizations and kind of practice, you know when the parents were bringing the kids in for solutions. Many times part of the solution involved, the parents.
Dr. Manon 16:15
Yes, I was going to say there is usually a dynamic involved there.
Dr. L 16:21
So I’m not stepping away from it. I think that in helping the kids, I will always offer the solutions that I have for the parents, the programs that I have for the parents to them. But with the new perspective, a new focus that I’m giving you these so that you can support your child better, and become the full individual that they are.
Commercial Break 16:47
Hi, I’m Dr. Manon Bolliger and I wanted to take a moment to thank you for watching these podcasts. If you haven’t subscribed, please do. Also, feel free to leave comments and like it this way more people get to find out about this work and about other choices for health. So I think it’s really important that we all share this information, I have a free gift for you. It’s a seven sequence email that has tips for every day. And it’s a little insight about how to live your life when it comes to health. And it’s very much built on how I managed to overcome stage four cancer and what it took. So I would love you to have this. And thank you once again, for listening to these podcasts.
Dr. Manon 17:51
I understand the change or the pivot and the importance to love your life, because often when we go into medicine, it’s like we’re saviors. And we’re really not, you know, people need to save themselves. We’re more like guiders, that’s why in the end, it’s education and empowering. And that’s what makes the biggest difference.
Dr. L 18:29
And I actually was gonna say this for our nonhealthcare audiences as well that whether you’re a parent, whether you have other responsibilities, but as an adult, we all have all these responsibilities, other things that come along the way. And that makes us stop what our life is about, like, kids come along and it’s like, I’m going to do whatever it takes so that my child has the best of everything. But then in that process, you’re inadvertently teaching the kids that you come second to other people, right? So it’s important for us to always stay in touch and always stay connected with our mission with our purpose in life and sharing our gifts and expertise with the world as well. It’s an ongoing thing, basically,
Dr. Manon 19:15
Yeah, it is ongoing, and it’s completely integrated. But that is the idea I’m assuming, behind the name a role model, because we learn from role-modeling, without the discussion, just by observing and if we’re not living in integrity with the bigger truth of what we’re aligned with our values, then kids would only learn this discordant message, you know, the same message that created us. Amazing. So, tell us what you are doing now. So maybe some main points, so is ADHD, the focus of what you’re helping parents with or not necessarily
Dr. L 20:13
No, because I moved away from the whole, putting people in boxes when it comes to diagnosis. So I basically wanted to, and I don’t even want to use the word prevention because that means you’re focusing on getting away from something. Whereas if you focus, and I use this, I think this is a biblical analogy that you know, you do not fight darkness with darkness, you just bring in the light, and the darkness just simply disappears. And I kind of really want to focus on that, that if you really strive on living to your fullest potential, then the problem simply dissipates, the challenges simply dissipates, it doesn’t mean that you won’t have challenges, it’s just that you go through them instead of having to overcome them or be beaten by it or have to correct course, things like that, they actually become your learning points. And by the same token, successes also are not an end to themselves either. So if I was to say anything about all of this stuff, if I was to have a teaching point on all of this, is that a lot of times we are goal-oriented, right? So let’s set a one-year goal, three months goal, or what’s your goal, I’m going to get an A, What’s your goal, I’m going to go out and get this make this much money, or I’m going to get this job. Instead of doing that which becomes an end to itself. If you start from the bigger picture of what your full life looks like? What is your life about? When you take your last breath, what is your life about? And building the legacy where every success and every failure goes towards adding meaning and adding depth to that legacy. That’s what it’s all about. So if you want your children to thrive, if you want your children to lead fulfilling thriving lives, then show them what it looks like in practice instead of merely surviving, why not be healthy? Why not be successful? Why not show them that you’re an influencer and make them understand what it looks like? You know, they say a picture’s worth 1000 words, right? Well, a collection of pictures is probably worth more than 1000 pictures, right? Leading by example becomes important and understanding that, you know, if you take that big picture and point in mind, and then step towards it, and realize whatever you’re going through today, is part of that journey. That’s what it’s all about. Ultimately, every single one of us is valuable and essential to humanity, and how we can make humanity better. I’m all about optimizing humanity’s potential. I think you were there when I was talking about it on TEDx about the fact that if you can optimize human potential, you can optimize humanity’s potential. You can’t skip a step in this process.
Dr. Manon 23:09
So typically, then, who are the children, or the parents who bring them…what’s the problem, or what’s the situation? Because we’re still in a so-called problem-solving universe. Though, I frankly have issues with that. But it still is, you know, usually, people look, because they have an issue, a problem. So who do you serve in that way? Who, who ends up getting the benefit of your work?
Dr. L 23:50
So I love that question. Because it actually caught me by surprise, in this whole journey in development. So as I develop my programs, one of the things is that I offered the mentorship program, right? And people started coming to me, you know, people join mentorships, because they have a problem they want to solve, right? But then somehow it was really interesting because my approach is this grounds up inside out approach. And I always, I’ll give you this one example, basically, that have you ever woken up, and the day that you’re facing, the problems that you have during that day seem bigger than life that you don’t know how to take on that life, right? And you kind of are hesitant to start your day. You started with dread things like that. And, but then once you get up and you start moving around, you go through your shower and your routines by the time you’re out and you’re coming out the door. The problem seems smaller. And a lot of that has nothing to do with the problem changing or solutions presenting themselves. It’s merely what happened inside of us from the moment that we were asleep and are getting up, where we might be dehydrated, might not have proper nourishment, might not have rested enough, have not been moving for several hours. To a place where you got your nourishment, you started moving around, you saw some people and socialized with them, you got some sunlight. And all of a sudden, internally, you’re in a much better place to tackle the challenges and the things that are facing you during that day. So the problem shrinks, so your perception of the problem becomes different. As a result, your outlook on the day becomes different as well. So has nothing to do with the problem or what the problem was. So I guess my point on this is that if you go ahead and look at the basics of sustaining and making sure that your health and the tools that you have in your body are addressed, then you are the most capable of handling anything that comes your way. So if you go ahead and make sure that your biological, psychological, social, spiritual needs and development are optimized, that’s as good as it can get. I mean, if a truck is coming at you, I don’t care how strong you are. I mean, but the reality of it is that the stronger you are, the more likely you’re going to survive, and the weaker you are, the less likely you’re going to survive it. But you did not go to the gym and work out because someday a truck is gonna come, right?
Dr. Manon 26:46
Yeah, I mean, I completely agree with how you’re positioning this. But still, how do people…how do they connect with you? Like I can understand how you transform their perspective of their problem. But basically, they do they still think, oh, there’s a relationship problem with my kids, or my kids don’t listen to me or you know, my child is having problems in school, like, how do they find out about you?
Dr. L 27:22
Oh, I see. So, usually, when I speak on stages, for instance, one of the things is I talk about health. And so usually people have health concerns, nutrition concerns, fitness concerns, neurologic concerns, productivity concerns. So that’s one part. And then the other part is regarding family. So whether it is child development, whether it is parenting skills, whether it is spousal relationships, these are typically the ways that people find out about me or join our programs, basically. And then through that, the basic fundamental thing, which I always talk about with my own children, which are now six and 10, is that if you can control what goes into your mouth, or what comes out of your mouth, you’re ahead of most of the people on this planet. And to me, that is the essence of being able to control your life and manifest what you want out of life.
Dr. Manon 28:21
Okay, that makes sense. I was just trying to think as this is my ideal world that people would…like it’s interesting, you call it a mentorship. So people can join to be in a community. Is that how it works? Or?
Dr. L 28:40
Yes, so we have a mastermind group where people come and collaborate, and we train and work together and have the benefits of collaboration in a community. So it’s not just two points of view, the person who joined the program and me, but actually a more comprehensive different point of view. And then there is the mentorship, which is more one on one, in which case, basically, I usually serve as the conduit to help people kind of go through all the noise and the Google and all the different opinions out there and find out what is the best approach for them in their own lives. So it is not teaching because my job is not to be wiser and have all the answers. My job is to facilitate your ability to be able to solve your own problems. So long term you can do that without me basically.
Dr. Manon 29:43
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Oh, we’re very aligned. It’s always so exciting to hear.
Dr. L 29:54
That was my Hallmark in private practice as well. Like if I can go ahead and teach you about your body. You don’t have to keep relapsing and coming back, every six months or whatever. Because every relapse, you have more problems to deal with, because now you also have six months that got wasted too, you have to build back that back up as well.
Dr. Manon 30:13
And the other thing too, is there are so many different ways to so-called deal with a problem. There are many other options that can accelerate the healing journey and all of that. And, I think it’s like it’s facilitating, also allowing people to choose and learn how to choose the different options out there. But they need to be focused on what it is they actually want, you know, and these are all parts missing in medicine, and hands are tied to typically being able to work in a collaborative, more integrative way, which is so essential. So I know this from what you wrote, but you’re going to be doing a summit. Would you like to speak a little bit about this summit?
Dr. L 31:07
Our summit is called Health, Wealth and Wisdom, the Parents Edition. So our focus, again, is on the family. So when we’re talking about things that apply to the parents’ lives or many times, the children, or the parents’ parents, many times, sometimes that gets forgotten. But, you know, the sandwich generation, a lot of times can end up being squished from both sides, and they have responsibilities towards both. And we want to make sure that we support them as the heroes, as the role models, so that they can go ahead and support these other people that are loved, and they’re in their lives as well, without forgetting themselves. So Health Wealth and Wisdom summit, it’s actually a global event. We have people, speakers, and experts that come from 17 different time zones. And we have hundreds of people usually there. And many of the talks and the topics that are discussed can be life-changing. I once had a lady say, you know, I was always on the fence about becoming a parent, and I had no idea there was so much support for parents out there. And now I’m actually really thinking about starting a family just because of the summit. So I felt very proud.
Dr. Manon 32:24
That’s wonderful. Yeah, because it’s true. You don’t get born with a manual.
Dr. L 32:28
Dr. Manon 32:29
That’s maybe a good thing that part would need to be rewritten and individualized anyways.
Dr. L 32:38
Exactly. Basically, that’s what I would invite you guys to.
Dr. Manon 32:44
We’ll put the link for sure. underneath it.
Dr. L 32:48
So it’s a two-day event. And we would love to have you there. And there’s prizes, there’s gifts, there’s all kinds of things that you can take home with you as well.
Dr. Manon 32:57
Okay, wonderful. All right. Well, that concludes our time together. Any last parting thought or word,
Dr. L 33:05
I’m biased, so I always start with the brain top-down, inside out. So I say, to optimize humanity’s potential, you can start by optimizing your brain. So optimize your brain and you can optimize humanity’s potential.
Dr. Manon 33:20
Okay, I want you to just say one more word about that. When you say brain and optimize your brain, specifically, what are you meaning?
Dr. L 33:29
So optimizing your brain, the way I look at it is if you want to show up in life as your full self, then you need to have control over your life. And you’re to have control over your life. The most fundamental foundational piece is having control over your own body and call it my bias, the organ that seems to control most of the functions in the body happens to be the brain. Now I know this is a very mechanistic view of it. And there’s more to it. But that’s basically my starting point, especially since the brain is not fully developed when we are born. There’s huge, tremendous potential and opportunity that is being lost when we are not optimizing our children’s brains and ultimately, their life potential. So that’s what I’m passionate about.
Dr. Manon 34:19
And this is a holistic perspective from including nutrition.
Dr. L 34:25
Yes. For me, if before you ask your body to support you, you have to make sure you are supporting the body itself.
Dr. Manon 34:35
Okay, wonderful. Well, it was lovely to have you, and thank you so much for being here.
Dr. L 34:41
My pleasure. My pleasure, it was wonderful. Thank you guys for being with us. And I really appreciate you, Dr. Manon. You’re the best at doing what you’re doing.
Dr. Manon 34:50
Thank you for joining us. For more information, go to DrManonBolliger.com.