Personal experiences form the basis of clinical and publishing success for Dr. Natasha Turner, ND (Class of 1999)
Dr. Natasha Turner, ND, practises, lives and writes by her own book (pun intended). The Class of 1999 graduate is a New York Times bestselling author of four immensely popular, highly regarded books: The Hormone Diet (2009), The Supercharged Hormone Diet (2011), The Carb Sensitivity Program (2012), and The Hormone Boost (2016). A fifth publication, commissioned by HarperCollins, is due out next year.
Natasha can be found at her clinical practice, Clear Medicine Wellness Boutique, in the Summerhill neighbourhood of Toronto and as a regular guest on The Marilyn Denis Show where she dispenses healthy living advice to viewers. Her segments are based on her own personal experiences and patient case studies – all of which form the foundation of her books.
“I figured out what works and what doesn’t, and I follow my program that has been evolving since I started practising 21 years ago. Every doctor and every nutritionist in my clinic, they’re all trained on my protocols and use my approach,” she says.
What makes the hormone diet so effective? It’s a comprehensive nutrition and lifestyle plan that Natasha developed to help get her own health back on track. Diagnosed with hypothyroidism in 1993 and polycystic ovarian syndrome in 1999, Natasha was feeling tired and depleted, sleeping for most of the day, putting on weight and craving sweets.
She first began successfully focusing on her own health to regain her energy and strength, then applied the lessons to her patients.
“I was so sick with this thyroid condition and I made myself sicker by overexercising, cutting calories and raising my cortisol. Then I realized the negative impact of this lifestyle and thought, ‘Wow, hormones are really a powerful thing. You can diet and exercise until you’re blue in the face but if you’re not balanced, you’re never going to get the results.’ That’s exactly what happened to me,” she says.
“When I totally immersed myself in the hormone diet approach, it truly healed me.”
But hers are not diet books that capitalize on trendy fads – Natasha does not preach any miracle supplements, nor any magical herbs that could undo years of hormonal damage and illness. She does educate about the importance of nutrition – as many NDs do – but there is much more inherent to her approach. Daily physical activity, the right types of supplementation at the right time, at-home metabolic testing and lifestyle modifications are all crucial factors in achieving long-term health benefits.
And readers were definitely ready. Within its first week of release, The Hormone Diet topped bestseller lists and was the top-selling health book in Canada that year. And The Supercharged Hormone Diet was so highly anticipated that it caught the attention of The Dr. Oz Show, where she was invited to discuss restoring hormonal balance in November 2013 (Natasha was the first ND on the program, and has appeared nine times since then).
Natasha did not expect her books to take off so instantly and their success still comes as a surprise even today. Looking back, she was ahead of the curve in many ways. The Hormone Diet was one of the first books to thoroughly examine the interplay between the hormones that influence weight loss and how even one imbalance can disrupt even the simplest of health goals.
“It’s a good message and still pertinent,” she says. “I’ve been so sick, so what did I do? I created the hormone diet approach and still follow it. I believe so passionately in this and its potential. And even if you get blackout curtains in your bedroom and do nothing else after reading my books, I would be thrilled.”
This article was originally published in issue #27, Mind|Body|Spirit, Summer 2020, page 6