- This is the story of Innovative Medicine, as told by the co-founders Caspar Szulc (the host of the ‘Your Health. Your Story’ podcast) and Dr. Mark Iwanicki. » Jump To This
- From veterinary school, to becoming a patient and overcoming lifelong seasonal allergies, to entrepreneur – Mark tells how the company got started. » Jump To This
- How Innovative Medicine was almost ‘alternativemedicine.com’ » Jump To This
- Explaining the difference between functional medicine and Innovative Medicine. » Jump To This
- How a more comprehensive therapeutic toolkit may provide better patient results, especially in the face of complex chronic conditions. » Jump To This
Is the current medical paradigm truly broken? And if so, how do we fix it? In this first episode of ‘Your Health. Your Story.’ we bring on the co-founders behind this podcast, Dr. Mark Iwanicki and Caspar Szulc, to answer these questions and talk about how they got started and how they intend to change medicine and the way we look at healing.
They started a company that has been dreaming big for over a decade, making a positive change in people’s lives by going against conventional health-care industry thinking.
The mission of Innovative Medicine is to go beyond the mainstream approach to incremental change and take a vertical leap toward exponential progress by leading the way in unifying and personalizing the field of medicine.
This is the story of Innovative Medicine.
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Disclaimer: Transcripts are prepared by a transcription service. Refer to full video above for exact wording.
Caspar Szulc: 00:00:01
I’m super excited about this one because we’re talking about a lot of stories and this is what we’ll be doing throughout these podcasts is really getting into the miraculous stories of healing, of innovation, of discoveries, of empowerment, of hope. But everyone, every organization has a story and I want to tell Innovative Medicine’s story. And with me today, I have Mark Iwanicki. Dr. Mark Iwanicki, the co-founder of Innovative Medicine. And, and we’re going to go in a little bit and tell you this story. Really the story starts at childhood. And I don’t know how many owners and entrepreneurs can say this if they started a company together, but we knew each other as little children.
I think we have a picture. I have this somewhere of us, you know, as toddlers basically just like kind of, you know, looking back on this faded little photograph together. But of course your father was a doctor. My father was a doctor. Both immigrated here from Poland. Knew each other. Both lived in the area and everything. We knew each other since we were little. And we’re family friends seeing each other, a lot of each other on the holidays, but I don’t think either of us…after a certain point you went off to college, right? You’re a year older. You went to Cornell and go into medical school or you’re premed at that time?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:01:48
Caspar Szulc: 00:00:01
Right. Veterinary. That’s right. That’s right. That’s what you were going in for. I went to Boston, went into school of management, just wanting to be the finance, Wall Street guy. But then, you know, that’s where I think that the story starts to pick up about Innovative Medicine. So can you give your side of the story of how things started when you started to see this could be an idea for a company, because you have a story of healing yourself. That triggered this, right. So give, give me a little bit about that.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:02:24
Yes. So I was on track. Veterinary school had gotten into veterinary school and I was starting to feel really unwell. I’ve always had really bad allergies, but the allergies had gotten really, really bad. I was having a lot of GI symptoms. I was having a lot of issues with digestion. I was having a lot of anxiety and it was kind of coming to a head. And you know, I grew up with a family of doctors. My father’s an OBGYN, my mom’s a nurse and they’re very traditionally oriented. It’s pills, it’s surgery, it’s the conventional kind of mind frame. And I remember just not feeling really well. And I came to my mom and I was like, ‘I don’t know what’s going on. I just don’t feel like, I don’t know what’s going on.’ She’s like, ‘you know, why don’t you go see Tomek [Dr. Thomas Szulc] and Jola [Jolanta Szulc, PhD]?’ I was like okay. So I remember they were living on your parents were living on the East Side and I went in specifically first to see your mom, but then you know, obviously your dad was there.
Caspar Szulc: 00:03:21
And to set the backstage, my mother’s a psychologist, of course my father was a doctor in integrative medicine. And by now, this was after his conventional days of just using pills and surgery. I’m actually surprised your mother was like ‘yeah, go see them.’
Mark Iwanicki: 00:03:36
I was surprised too that she she brought that up. But she’s like, ‘why don’t you go to to see Jolanta [Szulc]?’
Caspar Szulc: 00:03:41
I mean, you had been trying conventional treatments, right?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:03:45
Yeah. I mean, I had gone through traditional allergy shots. I had gone through antihistamines. I had done traditional testing for the GI and nothing really ever came up. I had barium enemas and swallows and CT scans and everything and nothing really was really coming up. And so she had suggested that. And I went to go see your parents, your mom and your dad and your dad I remember he had his Lecher antenna and started testing me and I was like, ‘what is happening right now?’ What is even this thing right now and all this stuff. And I remember seeing all these essential oils and herbs and he was doing ACMOS treatments on me and your mom was teaching me EFT and I was like this, I had never seen anything like that.
I was, you know, not really raised around that. And I was blown away by it and I was like, ‘Oh my God, this is so cool.’ I just started getting super excited by all this stuff. And I would come back like once a week. Sometimes it was multiple times per week. And then I remember your dad opened up his office – at the time he was on sabbatical. He opened up his office in the West side…sorry, on the East side. And started doing IV treatments and I started getting IV therapy and started feeling better and better and better. And I was like, what? This is just incredible. And then just one day he just casually said, ‘you know, I’ve been always thinking about starting a company to talk about this stuff and kind of bring awareness to the therapies that I’m doing. Do you want to do it together?’ And without hesitation I was like, yes, I’ll do everything! And then at the time I actually was still going, I was planning on the veterinary school until I actually deferred for a year and then never really followed up with that. But then we started the company and then he was like, you know what? My son wants to join too. Let’s, let’s all do it together. I was like, amazing, awesome. Let’s do it. So you had come back from Boston and we started working out of his office and trying to get the company going and trying to get the website up. I remember those early days we were just kind of selling the different products he had in his office. The Pekana and the Unda. So we kind of went on that journey.
Caspar Szulc: 00:05:58
Yeah, it was really funny because I remember being up in Boston. I had graduated, I was in finance working at State Street Global Advisors in downtown Boston. I hated it. It was nothing like the movie Wall Street. I was sitting there, just like hitting Enter over and over looking at global FX rates and just making sure things kind of worked out. Something that I’m absolutely sure a computer does now for like the tens of thousands of people that employed back then out of college to do this. But I was just kind of miserable and at a crossroads. Like, this is what I trained, you know, this is what I went to college for and got my degree in and what am I doing? And I got a call from my father, he’s like, ‘Hey, do you want to start a company?’
And I’m like, ‘excuse me?’ And he’s like, ‘yeah, with Mark.’ I’m like Markey? Like Mark, I haven’t seen in years Mark? Like used to be childhood friends Mark? And he’s like, sure, why not? And I was like, okay. And back then, I mean this is 2003, 2004ish, you know, and you didn’t really just start companies. I went to business school and there wasn’t even an entrepreneur class. Not even degree. I’m saying a class to teach you how to start anything about it. That word alone was kind of foreign. Nowadays, it’s all over, right? Everyone’s an entrepreneur. But back then it was like, well what does that even mean? Like what, what do we mean? What are we doing here? Right? Starting a company. I even then knew my father was doing different things because he had, transitioned now from conventional medicine and moved over and each year it was more and more each year it was like a step.
And I knew he took that big step when I first started college of getting out of insurance and completely going into the integrative field where he was in pain management, accepting insurance, doing all of that, still doing something conventional mixed with more laser therapy and pain management. But, I still didn’t quite get it. So when I got this, it was more for me…see your story is like, ‘wow, I experienced it. This is crazy.’ For me, it was like just get me out of this career I’m in because I’m miserable. And I didn’t know that time what I was getting into. And you’re right, I came back like kind of, you know, out of the blue just being like, all right, leaving, put in my two week notice. And people were like, what are you doing now? And I’m like, I’m gonna go start a company in New York City. Like who does that at 22? Who goes and just starts a company, you know? And I was like, yeah, my good childhood friend and my father, let’s do this. And it was in the beginning…we were working out of his office on the Upper East Side and we were at his front desk basically plugging away at HTML code and figuring out how to sell things at a reasonable price and how to ship them and packaging things ourselves. And we did that for what, a couple of years right? Where we were just out in front of, or on the side next to the reception. I was helping out with reception at the time. You know, everyone now who owns a business knows it’s always a side hustle at first. Right. You need to get something else going. And I remember you were bartending.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:09:10
I was working in Pop in the city as a server, yeah.
Caspar Szulc: 00:09:15
And so the story started that Innovative Medicine was really because you went through it, and because it was so unique. Because we said, “people need to know about this.”
But when we started it and it wasn’t really like that so much because it had to be a revenue stream. It had to be a business. Right? That was first and foremost. And I remember even looking and I was like, ‘Hey let’s get like alternativemedicine.com’ because that URL was open and it was just a cheesy name; almost like just a descriptive name. But I was like, Hey we’re going to get hits. I looked into data of how many people are looking this up on, you know, back then Yahoo was probably bigger than Google for a search engine. Ask Jeeves was around these others that you had to look at. But, but I wanted to push for alternative medicine. Do you remember who came up with the name innovative medicine? Cause it obviously wasn’t me. I think it was your dad. I remember your dad and your mom were like, I really liked this name. And I was like, okay, and you got to give it to them because they knew it. Then like again for you, you experienced it but you probably didn’t know at all at that point. I only knew so much. I knew of the products, I knew what he sorta did, but I didn’t gain an appreciation until years later for it, for what it was and how unique it was and I look back and I’m so happy we went with that name over alternativemedicine.com which, who knows what it would be today with that.
But we started that way and Innovative Medicine, I always say, was just a high quality online GNC for more alternative medicines. You’ve got some homeopathics on there. You had herbal, you had good high quality nutritional supplements. Things that were found in some practitioners offices back then. They were just starting integrative medicine. Functional medicine wasn’t even around. I think it was more called complimentary medicine in the early 2000s. CAM – complimentary and alternative medicine. And that’s what we started. We built, you helped build the website out. You knew HTML and everything and that’s how we got started. But, but I will say that was like just, just a very small starting point for what turned into something much bigger. And I think again, it was a little bit…I don’t remember having the discussion with you, but it was a little bit out of like ‘this isn’t enough’. Just selling products. It doesn’t really get across what we’re doing. And also at the time I think it was, it was a lot of those products Amazon started to sell after a few years. We had laser products.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:11:54
I remember there was a company Forest Health that was doing a lot of the selling with Pekana, a lot of the similar higher-end products. And then we got into the laser market, we started doing that pretty much full steam ahead. Yeah.
Caspar Szulc: 00:12:02
And then Soluna came on board and then were really, it was like a new iteration. And at each point it was like we pivoted because we sort of had to. I think Amazon started carrying some of this stuff, like Heel products were around back then and they got on Amazon. It was like, all right, how do you compete with that? With the laser, it was great. That was a great product. We had HairMax when it got FDA approved, the hair laser, we had a skin laser from Beurer in Germany. But again, those started getting more competition and then the skin laser was, was a real laser that didn’t really have FDA approval and it was kinda like the FDA is like, ah, we don’t want that out there. Even though it was only five megawatts.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:12:44
FDA cleared. It wasn’t FDA approved.
Caspar Szulc: 00:12:48
And are you using it as a medical device? This and that, which, you know, we had a complex relationship with the FDA over the years. I’d have to say, because that wasn’t the first time they kind of stopped the product that we were helping to distribute and trying to help people with. And then we got into Soluna, which was a German spagyric, which is like a homeopathic herbal product. And, and it was at that point, I think when we’re doing that, we also started to go into the practitioner education side.
And for me that was a big jump because we started to actually really engage with doctors and travel to other places. You ended up working for one of the doctors after you graduated medical school with Dr. Beth McDougall and she was one of the first pioneers I would say to step into Innovative Medicine when it was training doctors. But we really went gung ho about that. And I know that was around the time you were leaving. So talk about that a little bit. Cause we had all this time together, it was like seven years, basically two of us…we’d hire here and there a person in the front or something like that to help out or to ship out stuff. But I mean, you always had it in you. I think that you knew you wanted to go back to medical school.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:13:59
Yeah. I always knew that I wanted to go back, you know, or even right from day one when your dad said, let’s start this business. I always knew, and I, and I mentioned him, like I do want to go back to school one day. And in the beginning I thought, I thought it was going to be veterinary school. I thought I would go back to veterinary school. And then as the years went on, I was like, no, I think, I think I want to go to medical school. And then you know, it was kind of toying with this idea. And then I remember we were at a trade show and the president of NCNM came to our booth. What’s his name?
Caspar Szulc: 00:14:32
You should know this. I didn’t go there.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:14:38
David Schleich. So I remember he started telling me about naturopathic medicine and I was like, what is this? And he’s like, Oh, you know, it’s like conventional medical school and in a lot of States licensed different and differently in different States. Basically you learn about pharmaceuticals, you learn about surgery, but then you also learn about homeopathy and herbs and physical medicine. And you can also do a psych degree in acupuncture and Chinese medicine. And I just got really excited by that idea.
Caspar Szulc: 00:15:05
I remember this was at the Integrative Healthcare Symposium in 2007 or, no, I think it was later than that. You’re right, it was 10 or nine. We started going I think in 2007 to those, cause I do have a badge somewhere, but yeah, he just hooked you.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:15:27
He hooked me in. And I just kind of got mesmerized by the idea of going to, to naturopathic school. And then I find out about this program in Portland and you know, Portland’s a rainy place. But when I went for my interview, it was the most beautiful day in the world. And you could see Mount Hood in the distance with the snow capped mountains. And I was just like amazed by the city and I was, I was sold. So yeah, we figured it out and I actually left active participation in Innovative Medicine to go full time back into school and do a degree in a naturopath naturopathic and then acupuncture. It was a five year program. And so when I went down that route, you know, I was really happy and excited by school, really loved Portland and loved learning.
And by then, yeah, I mean you were growing Innovative Medicine by leaps and bounds at that point. You know, things were changing so fast and I just wasn’t really connected to it. I didn’t really know what was, what was going on, but I would get updates, hear things and see things and see how the product lines were changing, how more information was getting out there, how the site was changing, how things are really accelerating very rapidly. And how the trainings had evolved from just trainings around Soluna some more trainings around B.A.H. and your dad’s whole approach to medicine was kinda getting out there more, which was exciting. So yeah, and then after school I kinda had a decision to make on where I wanted to go and since naturopathic medicine really wasn’t licensed in New York at that time and actually still isn’t now and it’s fully licensed in California where you can be, you can do everything there that conventional doctor can, I wanted to kind of experience that.
I wanted to see what it would be like to be in a licensed state. And then we found, you know, I’d asked you, are there any clinics on the West coast that were doing kind of similar medicine? They were doing really interesting stuff and you’d mentioned Dr. McDougal and the Clear Center. And I had reached out to them and they enthusiastically kind of brought me on board really fast. And you know, they love the idea of having me there. So I struggled with the idea of, of where I want it to be. Post-school and ultimately it came down on going back to going to California and staying in a licensed state and seeing how they were practicing and seeing their approach. You know, Dr. McDougall’s an amazing doctor and she comes from a very more traditional, I would say functional medicine approach, you know, with hormonal balancing and more traditional medicines.
But her practice has evolved so much and it keeps evolving because of the training she received around B.A.H. and you know, like the antenna and working with your father. So it was fascinating to see that evolution kind of in real time, see how that was happening, how that was affecting patient care and how patients were getting better on this kind of a more holistic kind of approach rather than just conventional and functional medicine approach. And then I was there for three years, I guess two and a half, three years and really started missing my family. I really started missing the East coast and you know, wanting to come back and kind of be more involved with Innovative Medicine, kind of get get my feet wet back on the East coast even though naturopathic medicine isn’t licensed in New York. I took that gamble have to come back to, to see if it can make it work and see let’s see how we can move forward with, with that. But I enjoyed my time with, with Dr. McDougall and the Clear Center and I have nothing but good things to say about them. I think for me it was time to, to kind of come back to the East coast.
Caspar Szulc: 00:19:21
Yeah. I’m going to hit rewind really quick. When you left to go to medical school, I remember the, it’s difficult to see your co-founder that you started a company with leave, right? You spent all this time with basically all your 20s and everything, then decide to leave. And what are you going to do next? But I have to say like you look back on things, and I’ve always been a true believer that you know, things happen for a reason and they happened at the right time, whether you like it or not. Right. And you could either go against it and pout and bitch and complain or you could kind of go with it. And I bitch and complain for a little bit and then I went with it and it really worked out perfectly. I think that’s the time where we brought, I brought on someone new Ben who was, you know, an amazing, a guy went on to do the TEDx talk. If you haven’t seen it, ‘One Deep Breath‘, look it up. It’s awesome.
And, and we started to expand globally off of that. We went into India, we went into Europe, we started training doctors elsewhere and it really was one of these things that, you know, you see it as such like, Oh man, my co-founder has gone. Like, how is this going to go on? I don’t know what life is like without him, like sort of thing. It’s like a breakup. So you know, but it’s not…and it was definitely amicable and, and you know, it’s, it’s really awesome that you then became a doctor, right? And you’re not practicing what we were preaching in a sense and going out and working with a lot of doctors we influenced so that, that would really was like a pivotal time, but it was also such a time of acceleration and growth for both of us in our own ways. And to come back, I think you know, that that’s a really good lesson that you can separate from something and, and be back, you know, in a time and you can let go of things and go on your own path and find it later in life. It isn’t like, you know, you need to stick with this or you’re out or anything like that.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:21:12
It was a really hard decision for me. I remember agonizing over it. And how’s it going to bring it up and bring it up to you and your dad. And it really, it really was stressful for me, you know, as like, cause I knew your dad knew that I wanted to go to school, but you know, he, I think he was waiting maybe first the right time and…I don’t know.
Caspar Szulc: 00:21:31
Never the right time for these things. And that’s the thing. At the time, it seems like it’s the wrong time. We need you here, right? We’re just starting to get over this hump of things. And it was the perfect time you knew. And I think, and again that’s that kind of like intuition, heart feeling. Your head can mess with you and you could get all these thoughts, Oh no, this isn’t the right time. They’re going to be angry at me. But your heart just said you knew it. You know, and, and that was really cool. And you going to work with one of the first doctors we trained afterwards and now practicing and having all this further medical knowledge and wisdom is really great. Now I want to go into a little bit now because… that’s basically the story up until now. And of course we’ll get into the next, the big things we’re going to be doing. But you know, you mentioned that you started working with Dr. McDougall and you’ve worked with other people and you understand, you know, this whole functional and I have a, you know, sometimes a problem telling people what’s the difference. I’m actually writing an article right now called this is not functional medicine. So what is Innovative Medicine? In your experience from medical standpoint, clinical standpoint, can you differentiate the two a little bit for the people listening?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:22:46
Yeah, I mean, you know functional medicine as it exists right now, in America and the world, it’s very data-driven. It’s very lab driven. You know, it’s maybe unconventional in that you’re using labs that aren’t traditional and you’re looking at labs that aren’t necessarily covered…obviously covered by insurance. But there’s also…even looking at traditional labs in a kind of a different way. And looking at it more of a functional way. So the idea is that…well, let’s say you get a CBC back or a standard hormonal panel back. Let’s, let’s take TSH for example. Which is a thyroid stimulating hormone. Basically like the master hormone for the thyroid, it has there’s a range which is considered normal for most doctors.
Most conventional endocrinologists say, okay, if the TSH is anywhere between zero and four, you’re fine, you’re good. That’s kind of the conventional wisdom, the conventional range where the medicine range says, okay, wait a second. You know, you’re having symptoms of hyperthyroid, of not enough thyroid, you’re losing your hair, you’ve got dry skin, you’ve got constipation, you’re fatigued, all these are huge signs of hypothyroidism. And when we look at your labs, they’re not outside of that conventional range. They’re not above before, you know, they’re not getting super, super high, but they’re high enough to where we can see it. This is out of a functional range. And Dr. McDougall was actually brilliant at this. She came up with her own ranger where you know, you stay, you stick around one. Basically anything above 1.5 is considered a very tight range.
And if the body goes, the TCH goes above that, it’s considered functionally hyperthyroid. So you’re not sure traditional hyperthyroid, but your function have a third. And this in those cases she said, okay, let’s give you like a really low dose thyroid. Let’s give you like a super, super low dose thyroid and see how you feel. And the patients start feeling better. They start feeling amazing. And so that’s, that’s kind of a functional approach to thyroid. And you can do the same thing with all the labs and basically all the hormones. And you know, it’s, it’s, it’s looking at labs in a different way, but you know, like you said, it is still conventional labs. It’s conventional testings, conventional blood work. That’s functional medicine in a nutshell. Your dad’s approach, the Innovative Medicine approach, you know, bioanalysis resonance of health is, you know, looking at the body in a much, much kind of bigger way.
Kind of step back, kind of globally and let’s step back even further and let’s see what’s going on here and taking into account energy, looking at bioenergetics, looking at resonance, looking at how the body responds, looking at, you know, these more Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurveda… that have understood the value of energy and how energy predates form. And how acupuncture and how all the Meridian system in the body actually predates any actual physical manifestation of the body. So looking at those higher level, basically higher level systems to then affect, you know, and, and making, making subtle adjustments there and those in those higher levels to then have huge downstream effects on the body and kind of to reestablish self regulation. The idea is, you know, even within functional medicine, the idea then becomes, ‘okay, we fixed you, we gave you this little bit of thyroid, you felt better, but now we’re, we’re managing your thyroid for the rest of your life. Basically we’re going to be adjusting and altering it and we’re never really restoring your body’s ability to heal its thyroid and produce normal thyroid on its own.’ And so looking at it even deeper, looking at these underlying factors, looking at energy, looking at energetics, looking at underlying heavy metals and you know, looking at toxicity, looking at diet, looking at all these really…and then not to say that functional medicine doesn’t do these things, but kind of looking at these things more globally from a larger kind of bird’s eye view and then making subtle changes to where the body can then re-establish self regulation on its own. That’s kind of the biggest way I’ve seen how I would describe maybe the difference between the two approaches. And another way I would kind of describe the approaches… I mean your father has tremendous success. I mean basically every single patient that walks in the door is going to be better. Where as the functional medicine approach? Maybe 80% of people get better. And then you get the outliers, which are harder to read, harder to treat and don’t really respond. You know, those patients that you’ve tried all these things and nothing’s working and you keep circling back, you keep trying new things and so any, and again, and even in a functional medicine approach, a lot of the docs aren’t really getting at underlying causes. You know, they’re just trying to manage kind of symptoms in a, in a more holistic way, in a, in a, in a less invasive way. But still it’s, it’s management versus we’re establishing self-regulation.
Caspar Szulc: 00:27:55
Two follow up points to that just came to mind while you were going through that. You know, I’ll debate whether everyone that comes in here gets better because you have to truly participate to get better. So there are of course patients. This isn’t for everyone because there’s a huge role of responsibility and what you have to do in this. It’s not just sit back and cure me, right? We always say, you know, you’re going to heal yourself. We’re just going to guide you a little bit, but you got to do the heavy lifting and a lot of patients don’t want to hear that. They just want to be like, no, I’m paying you. You know, do this for me and they may not get better, but I will agree with you that a high, high percentage of people that commit and go through with the complete program of treatment as a personalized, comprehensive Innovative Medicine approach, we’ll get better even in the most complex of conditions.
Number two is, I think that the idea of what is success, because I know a lot of functional doctors are wonderful people. I don’t put it down. I think it’s an amazing step in the right direction from conventional medicine, applying lifestyle, understanding things a little bit deeper. That is a great step, but a lot of it is symptomatic still. Like you said, someone had that, you know, thyroid was off. We gave them something, they felt better, they were going to continue to need that, you know, feeling better all the time isn’t the definition of success in medicine if that were so you would just take OTCs all time or just do drugs, right, like hard drugs and you will feel better but you’ll be slowly getting worse but you’re just going to need more of that. So the definition of success really has to be self-healing, self-management and the absence of underlying causes and of course through that the absence of symptoms. So it is this idea of health on all levels, body, mind, spirit. I always say if you’re not happy, you’re not healthy either. So you can’t be just absent in most symptoms but pretty depressed or you know, unhappy with things because that is a stage of health and I think we try and separate mental health from health when it’s the same thing. You know, when you say you’re not healthy, of course that incorporates to me the mental side, emotional side and even spiritual you could say, which is more purpose, consciousness, all of that. So I agree with you 100%. I think it’s just a lot of times, you know, you’ll have some pushback against, wait a second, you know, I get my patients almost a hundred percent to healthy and they get results like within a week they’re feeling better and everyone’s like, ‘Bravo’.
And you get the testimonials from all these people like yeah, within a week I felt better. Feeling better isn’t necessarily healthy all the time cause then five years down the line or something you’ll feel worse again. Not connect the two or correlate where that’s coming from and say, Oh, something else popped up. That is a little bit of the difference. But you know, looking at what an innovative medicine you know is, and again, coming from your clinical perspective now, not as the cofounder of it and everything, where do you think it really shines? You know, aside from the comparison of, of functional medicine, what do you think is that really unique point? Cause you could say, listen, you could take functional, why don’t you apply some energy medicine and some psychology and look at it a little bit differently, but it’s still probably wouldn’t be Innovative Medicine.
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Mark Iwanicki: 00:31:28
Yeah. I think, you know, BAH…bioresonance analysis of health.
Caspar Szulc: 00:31:35
And you’re saying that wrong for the second time now. Bioresonance Analysis of Health. That’s why it’s B.A.H.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:31:44
I think B.A.H. is kinda really a revolutionary step that your dad took in kind of changing medicine. Because you know, with B.A.H. and with the resonance tool of the Lecher antenna, your dad is able to pinpoint to complete accuracy what the patient needs and what the body’s calling for. You know, there are others, there are similar, similar concepts, right? Like applied kinesiology. Which Dr. Klinghardt uses as an art. You know, these, these ways of basically tapping into the body to then say, okay, we’re trying to eliminate guesswork. We’re trying to say what does the body need right now to get to the next step to get the next step of healing. And you know, these approaches work really well for these doctors because you are getting to the, to the truth of the matter.
I think with B.A.H. and with what your dad’s kind of come up with you really get to the level of fine tuning of the underlying cause like nothing else. And then you’re able to then apply these amazing modalities that your dad has, and a lot of people use, but then apply them in specific ways, at specific times that then affects the body in the most beneficial way to them where healing is just really transformed. You know, they have heavy metals that exist in the body. Okay. Then there’s infections in the body, but what are, what are we going to go after? It’s like, you know, there’s these, all of these things in functional medicine, it’s like, ‘Hey, well, you know, let’s, let’s address the toxicity first and then let’s, you know, let’s try these supplements first and then we’ll see how they do. And then maybe let’s then address the, the infections as kind of a general approach’. But, you know, for, for majority people that may work. But, you know, when you get individualized patient in front of you, you can really hone down with B.A.H. and say, okay, what is it that this person needs right now to get them to where they, to complete healing? And I think that’s nothing that I’ve seen out there exists like that.
Caspar Szulc: 00:33:54
One of the things I’ve heard from lots of doctors that we’ve trained and people from around the world that have gone through some of our training and understand it, is that this is a highly systematized way of being incredibly specific and incredibly comprehensive. No, it’s not that you’re only looking at a few modalities and seeing which conventional drugs may be best or, or which European biological or which type of energy medicine or which nutrients are needed or anything like that. You’re going really, really deep and doing it quickly and with fine specificity to which one comes first in priority. How much duration, how many IVs of this would you need. What exact ingredients in the IV, there is no set protocol. There is only your protocol.
I was speaking to a patient the other day who went through the treatment here, got better after years of different diagnoses and a had fibromyalgia and Lyme disease, endometriosis, you know, so many different things and went through the medical spectrum realm of doctor to doctor and just got worse and worse. And she was saying that I don’t fault any doctor. It’s just this is what they knew. They had small toolkits and they, they tried their hardest and they were good people, but they were guessing off of a small tool kit was what she said. Whereas, you know, this approach of Innovative Medicine is no guessing. We’re not even using our knowledge of the doctors and the medical staff here and everyone that’s trained. We’re not trying to at all be like, I think it’s just… we are asking your body what does it need? And it gives an answer to us and it’s not our answer. It’s not you that dictates the protocol and then you tap into a toolkit that has hundreds of therapies.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:35:47
Well, that’s the other thing too. This is a huge part of it, is that the toolkit is so vast. I mean, I have never seen a practice that has a toolkit this large with, from, you know, herbs to homeopathy to IVs, the many types of IVs that you guys do, the nutrient IVs, NAD, the pleomorphic remedies, all the different energetic components. I mean, it’s so vast that I think before a lot of doctors, maybe that they may be intimidatedbecause, you know, it took your dad a lifetime to learn all these modalities and then he’s, you know, incorporating all of them at once. I mean, not once, but incorporating all them in the practice in some way. You know, in an individualized format for each patient. But it’s such a vast array of tools in the tool box. You know, I haven’t seen really any of the practice really use, I mean, even at the Clear Center, we use a lot of, a lot of treatments, but I don’t think we come anywhere near the numbers you guys are using.
Caspar Szulc: 00:36:53
Listen, when I spoke to other doctors, like this is overwhelming. You know what I mean? I remember when we went to India and we were there training doctors were working for a healthcare system, a large, one of the largest and new Delhi hospitals. They’re all specialists, top-notch in India and everything. And, and I remember the intro to my father before he got up was all about innovative medicine and showing all the different, you know, pieces in it from the conventional surgery and everything. You still need to know all that of course. And then going into the nutrients, going into this, going into energy medicine, looking at other areas such as geopathic stress, toxicity, you know, infectious. You know, all of this. And I remember one cardiologist got up and he’s like, who is this God that knows all of this? We know like a fraction of this in conventional medicine. That’s all we need to know. And you’re saying, we got to know all of this?
Now my rebuttal to it of course, is that you don’t. You don’t need to know all that, but you do need to work with people that would. And I always say medicine is about collaboration, not competition and not specialties because specialties don’t usually work with each other. That’s the problem I always hear from patients. They sent me to the neurologist and then they sent me to the, you know, this specialist and it just goes around in circles and they’re not really talking to each other. Just like go there and go figure it out. Maybe they’ll have an answer and they usually don’t. And so I, I do believe that integrative medicine is about everyone coming together. That’s the point of integration. Having all the tools at your disposal and then being able to personalize that.
That’s great because again, a lot of medicine, you throw this word around and I see it too much is ‘science’. It’s based in science, right? But at the end of the day it’s a guess and it’s a doctor’s guess. Every doctor is going to be like, well I think you should do this or I think you should do this. Right. How much of science is like, I think the answer is this, right? That it doesn’t seem very scientific to me and I get it. It is because you’re looking at such scientific things under a microscope and evaluating pieces to it. Then that’s what makes it science. But the end of the day, you’re using that science and giving an opinion on it basically. And then seeing how the body reacts with, it’s trillions of different possibilities that, you know, I don’t know if you’d ever get the exact right combo to truly get healing in a very complex condition with that approach.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:39:17
Well, you know, something we learned at school is clinical medicine isn’t a science. It’s really not. I mean, in science you have, you know, A plus B equals C and that’s never the case working with people. So, and even in clinical medicine, you know, conventional medicine, you know, someone’s got insomnia, Oh, well then they should take Ambien. That should work. This is amazing. And we’ve done all these studies. Ambien’s amazing. And you try and in the end it doesn’t work. And you’re like, okay well let’s try a Lunesta. You know? And so it’s, it’s that kind of thinking, you know, I guess they say it’s evidence informed. So where they look at these studies and they say, okay, we’re going to give this you, because there have been some studies that show that does, it does work and we need to base it on something.
So, let’s give it a shot. You know, I think a lot of conventional doctors are afraid to step out of that model because, you know, it’s not in the literature. No one’s ever done it before and it doesn’t, you know, there are no studies around it. And so they get nervous and they say, ‘well, if there’s no study, it’s not real and it didn’t happen and we can’t try it.’ Right. And then with the patient and a patient who comes in and says, ‘well, I went to this doctor and they, you know, try all these herbs and all the stuff, and it worked. I felt better as well.’ There’s no studies around that. So it didn’t really work. But I feel better than I did. I do. I did great. Yeah. But no, you didn’t. You know, That’s experience versus evidence, right?
Caspar Szulc: 00:40:39
Right. And everyone goes for evidence-based medicine. ‘We need more evidence-based things.’ And it’s like, well, I disagree. I think you need more experience based things. If people are getting better and truly better where they’re actually not needing it for the rest of their life and actually feeling symptom free and feeling better without any further intervention. Isn’t that the best type of evidence you could have?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:41:03
You look at Chinese medicine. You know, 3000 years of clinical clinical use of herbs and you know, huge success. There’s no studies around it so it doesn’t work. You know, so that’s kind of a crazy thinking. I mean, I, I’m not actually against evidence-based medicine. I really like evidence-based medicine. I love looking at studies and I love looking at research. Because it gives you, it gives you ideas and helps to validate a lot of people’s minds. The only truth is a study. That’s the only truth they’ll accept. It’s the language of conventional medicine is, is, is, you know, studies and meta analysis and you know, so it’s just the way it is.
But I think being open to two different ways. Listening to patients and seeing what’s worked for different people and then maybe you know, down the line using those in the study and studying those things more accurately, I think is great. But if you just only use that, I think you’re limiting yourself and you’re limiting the effectiveness of your approach to helping patients. If all you’re looking at is just, it’s just conventional studies. Right.
Caspar Szulc: 00:42:49
Going back to the Innovative Medicine toolkit and how robust it is, do you have any favorite therapies or ones that you’ve seen to be effective are just out there that you could kind of share through your clinical experience now?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:42:59
You know, at the end of the day, any of the products around changing the, the milieu and changing the the detox pathways of the body I think are probably, you know, the number one thing. I think your dad would agree. It’s getting the organs of elimination on board. The liver, the kidneys, lymphatic system, the GI tract, everything kind of moving and eliminating and kind of decreasing the overall body burden and flexibility. Anything you can do that’ll do that is I think number one and hugely important.
Cause once you kind of eliminate those barriers, the body can then start ramping up its own healing. Once it’s no longer…like your dad uses that analogy of the house that’s covered in garbage and there are rats everywhere, you know, and the rats are kinda like, you would say maybe the microbes alive in the GI, the gut bugs, the dysbiosis, the SIBO, and you’re looking at the rats and you’re saying, ‘okay, let’s kill all the rats.’ Well, you know, the rats wouldn’t be here if we didn’t have all this garbage. So maybe let’s clean out all the garbage first, clean up the house, you know, patch up these holes and then any ratsrats that are left, we can kill. You know, one or two instead of hundreds of them. So that’s kind of the approach of, you know, the biological medicine approach, that kind of European biological medicine.
Which I think is, I mean, I would argue that maybe an underpinning of Innovative Medicine is European biological approach, which is also really something unique and new in in our understanding of medicine. So yeah, I think any of those remedies are hugely important. The you know, the pleomorphic remedies, that work of Enderlein, all kind of validates the biological medicine approach.
Caspar Szulc: 00:44:20
How important is lifestyle change in all of this?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:44:24
I think lifestyle changes are important. I think maybe more so on the mental, emotional side like we were talking about before than anything else. But, you know, diet and exercise are really important factors.
Caspar Szulc: 00:44:47
Yeah, it plays a big, big role. And any trends that you’re seeing from the Innovative Medicine perspective that you’re kind of getting excited about?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:44:59
What do you mean?
Caspar Szulc: 00:45:01
I’m saying there are these trends now looking of course at the microbiome, stem cells, just new light therapies out even say are, are kind of interesting in some ways and you know, advanced technology, even quantum computing, you could say, doing sort of what humans are able to do now and finding out this information that we were talking about without guessing, but allowing a computer, which up until now, of course you just couldn’t do. But anything there?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:45:34
You know, like I said, I love the gut. I love the microbiome. I love all the research coming out now. I had my mom’s where she’s in the hospital, she had pancreatitis and I was talking with her gastroenterologist and he’s actually was really excited that I was a naturopathic doctor and we started chatting and he’s one of the top endocrinology, sorry, gastroenterologists in Brooklyn and Maimonides hospital. And he was getting excited about the microbiome and he was saying, wow, you know, that all this study that came out and he showed me a copy of it, of actually just the recent 2019 August journal of Gastroenterology. There’s all these studies on the microbiome and he’s one of the only docs, one of the few docs in New York who are doing fecal microbiota transplant, you know, basically reintroducing a healthy poop back into the large intestine.
Caspar Szulc: 00:46:24
Kind of weird. And if you haven’t heard of this, you didn’t hear that wrong, You’re literally implanting poop.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:46:35
He goes in during colonoscopy and kind of implants it in, in the, in the distal ilium and kind of plants these healthy bugs and they kind of take over. Yeah. So it’s fascinating. I mean he uses it to treat you know, really, really serious case of C diff or C difficile infections or AC like hospitalized hospital acquired infections would basically not respond to antibiotics. You know, they just don’t respond, which is scary because then it’s like, okay, then the person can die. Like instantly, they basically just bleed out their colon. So that’s, and they’re having huge success with these fecal transplants or intestinal microbiota transplants. So I love anything about the gut and I think that the gut is also something that is kind of the barrier for the conventional world and the more of the functional and you know, natural medicine, alternative medicine approaches in that, it’s something that a lot research coming out now and more conventional docs are embracing the importance and seeing how diet and lifestyle affects the gut and how prebiotics and probiotics affect the gut is, you know, exciting that these huge studies are coming out or around it now and more conventional docs are embracing the importance and seeing how diet and lifestyle affects the gut and how prebiotics and probiotics affect the gut is, you know, exciting that these huge studies are coming out or around it?
Caspar Szulc: 00:47:29
No, there’s a lot of science coming out about it and you are right. It is bridging the gap a little bit, but I’ll humbly disagree that it’s not all about the gut and there’s so much else to it now. It’s not that I disagree with the idea that the gut health is incredibly important, but so is every other organs health…brain health… and you could say, well, the gut is the second brain. Well, what’s your first brain? Your brain? Right. You know, so put some attention to that and don’t hyper focus on anything. See the whole body as it is and look at all or all they’re all connected. Nothing is separate. You can’t just look at gut health alone as we see the appendix, pancreas, all these others, you know? But these are all separate organs and you could separate those and only look at the intestine and the colon, this, or the stomach. But there’s so much more to it. One of the things that I’m excited about and I’ll throw out there is the idea of using more technology to drive something in information therapy where you’re providing information. So almost like homeopathy, a lot of people have a really hard time understanding homeopathy. And to most people, it’s, it’s sugar water, right? It’s that you’re taking water, something that’s so…but it’s really about breaking it down. There is information, right? And that’s what you’re trying to provide. You’re not trying to provide a substance per se that is of a high physical quantity to then trigger something in the body. You’re basically trying to provide whispers to the cells to what they need to do. Again, give them the blueprint. Something’s wrong with the cells because I feel sick. They’re not working properly. So do you want to bring new workers to help with with that or do you want to give the workers that are already there in your body, the blueprint and information to do it right. Again, you know, it’s like getting an Ikea shipment of stuff and you don’t have the damn information to put it all together. Like you’re screwed. Yeah. You’re, you’re gonna have a hard time putting that together. And unless you just, even someone could tell you it, you don’t need physical, someone could say, number one, please pick this up and not get in. And that’s just physical vibration. You can say words over the phone. You asked for something.
So you don’t need much. But I know now a lot of this stuff we’re doing now is very light based, and technology using gemstones or certain, specific enzymes and proteins that you shine light UV through and it gives certain information through. Because light is information. Our bodies know that, you know, try staying somewhere dark for a very long time and, and seeing what happens cause the body does need that information to trigger so many responses. It’s the basis of a lot of life. So that’s something I’m like really interested in as I see it here being used in the Innovative Medicine approach, is that idea of going to the core, which is just information. What is DNA? It’s information.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:50:45
You’re seeing good results with these technologies? You got lights on you and like all these things going so you visualize it right. And you could see it and they make for good pictures and Instagram posts for patients. But number two, it’s really getting to the core of things. It is. Once the cells have certain information that is imbued into the body, I mean, there are no side effects from this, right? If someone gives you the information and do something, you usually don’t have a certain reaction to that that is negative and it is subtle. So I will say the most kind of profound effects that we’ve seen are the ones that are subtle over time, day by day. It’s not this sudden shift of anything that gets you. A lot of people say, you know, healing is nonlinear. It’s ups and downs, but it’s the subtle improvement over time and doing in a way where the body is making those, you know, you subtly, you usually in most cases suddenly get sick.
It doesn’t normally happen unless it’s acute of course, but we’re talking chronic cases here. It’s a subtle shift. It’s over time that every day you’re getting a little sicker. Here. We’re saying it subtly, you’re getting better little by little. And I think that’s the power of small wins. And it, it’s really interesting because it’s melding technology. It’s taking a lot of ancient wisdom in traditional Chinese medicine or Ayurveda, you know, so many different ancient healing techniques, but applying it with technology, with what we have now. We are a technologically driven society. Medicine is very technology driven, but I think we use the technology to kind of force the body to do something. And then, you know, the body’s like, well, I can’t even do it myself here. I’m saying I have to do this. So that’s what I find really interesting about it and what we’re applying it Innovative Medicine.
And that’s the cool thing about Innovative Medicine. It’s dynamic. A lot of people like, Oh, you just, you know, use nutritional IVs and acupuncture. It’s like, we don’t even do acupuncture here. And you know why? Because technology has driven new ways of performing energy balancing such as ACMOS, which is through a French engineer that created this. He recently passed away. But it is an amazing kind of, I would say advancement even. I’m not gonna knock acupuncture. It’s very good. You practice it. You know about it, but you could say that these, these ancient understandings are now being brought into modernized terms. And I think a lot of the understanding will also could say the words of the past are understood in the modern by things like quantum physics and the understanding there. So science is now just appreciating and catching up with technology as well with what we had in the past. And that melding together East meets West, the past and the future, you know, and applying to the human body is really exciting, at least from what I’m seeing here in the clinical aspect.
What are some of the best tips you give to patients that you see that, that are kind of the patterns over particles, you know, each patient is going to have different advice, but when you see patients these days, is there anything you’re kind of telling them over and over that you could share?
I do see a lot of adrenal fatigue and patients just kind of being burnt out through, through life? And kind of through that burnout, you know, lowered, lowered a testosterone and hormones in general. Just kind of get tanked. So, you know, because I did work with doctrine, we do Google home ones where we’re a big part of our practice. So you know, the other, the other thing is, is diet, you know, dietary approaches to health. You know, that’s a big hot topic for people. Do you have a favorite diet? I’ve recently stopped eating meat and dairy. Just because I feel better on it. I noticed that I just wasn’t personally feeling as good, heavier, I was feeling heavier, just sure more phlegmy just not as not as well. Which is, you know, kind of the opposite of a, of some of the more popular diets like the ketogenic diet, which is, you know, all meat, all cheese, all time.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:54:06
I do see a lot of adrenal fatigue and patients just kind of being burnt out through life. And kind of through that burnout, you know, lowered testosterone and hormones in general. Just kind of get tanked. So, you know, because I did work with Dr. McDougall which hormones is one of the big parts of her practice.
The other thing is diet, you know, dietary approaches to health. You know, that’s a big hot topic for people.
Caspar Szulc: 00:54:39
Do you have a favorite diet?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:54:41
I’ve recently stopped eating meat and dairy. Just because I feel better off it. I noticed that I just wasn’t personally feeling as good, heavier, I was feeling heavier, just more phlegmy just not as not as well. Which is, you know, kind of the opposite of a, of some of the more popular diets like the ketogenic diet, which is, you know, all meat, all cheese, all time.
But it’s hard because I don’t like to give my bias to patients. I want them to have the diet that makes them feel the best. Yes. So even though I encourage a more plant based, you know, staying away from meat, I don’t like to push it. There are specific diets that that can be beneficial that include, you know, less carbs and more proteins, more fats that are just that don’t feed the, those overgrowth of bacteria. So I like to talk about diet with patients and see kind of what they’ve tried with what’s worked and kind of experiment with that with them. At that same time kind of maybe injecting my agenda, a little bit of getting more fruits and vegetables into the diet because no matter what, if you’re already eating your meat or you’re not eating meat, I think we just, we don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables.
Caspar Szulc: 00:56:11
Absolutely. I don’t care what diet you’re on. I think you could always include more fruits and vegetables.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:56:15
Yeah, totally. So yeah, I would say those are the…that’s kind of a big, big recommendation I make. Increasing water intake. The basic.
Caspar Szulc: 00:56:24
I mean, listen, simplicity is always the way to go. I think everyone wants that kind of cool like new thing. You’re going to hear that it’s going to change your life.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:56:33
You mean like celery juice?
Caspar Szulc: 00:56:35
Yeah. [laughing] Like celery juice.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:56:39
I think meditation is key too. I try to encourage people to meditate, you know,.
Caspar Szulc: 00:56:46
If you’re going to exercise your body, exercise your brain. Meditation is exercise for your brain and your mind. Right. And emotional state as well. So that’s, that’s excellent advice. I like to give my advice to most people is, is from Gary Vee. Play the long game. You ain’t gonna make a million in the first year, right? You gotta be ready to like hustle and kind of be patient. If you’re sick, I’m saying play the long game. Do not look for results in the first week. I don’t even know if you should look for results for the first month even. You know what I mean? You may go down a little bit if you start some medical treatments and that’s just your body adjusting. It’s getting rid of lots of toxins and there’s all this crap in it and it’s kind of starting to move in into health. But sometimes as you know, if you have a dirty place and you start to clean, what’s the first thing you do? You almost make more of a mess. And then you could tidy it up afterwards. So I always say, like Gary Vee, you’re in it for the long run. You’re in it for the marathon. Don’t sprint this out.
What got you to a chronic state of sickness is years and years of choices, of neglect, of all these things. And it’s not to put blame, never put blame on yourself. Never feel guilty, but take responsibility and empower yourself. Right? And then understand that this is going to be a little bit of a journey, but it’s going to be my journey and through this healing process – that is long term and probably for the rest of your life because healing just goes on all the time; we’re healing all the time, of course, inside of our bodies – that this is going to change me and evolve me into a higher state through the process itself. So almost enjoy the journey. The ups and downs of it all. Healing is like that, but the end game, it’s going to be awesome.
Every single patient I speak to is like, ‘it took a while, I thought like coming in and it’d be like a month or two and I’d be better. But the whole healing thing took a year or two. But honestly, to get to 98% better from where I was, I didn’t even know if I’d get to 40 ever in my life again. And now it’s like, wow, that is amazing. But it took a lot of work.’
So, well, that’s my advice to most patients and, and it’s the innovative approach. And I do find so many parables with so many people out there that are kind of making big names for themselves off it, like Gary Vaynerchuk and others that are giving the no BS and kind of the honest way about it. And I think that’s the best we can do for patients.
Any products now that are kind of exciting you that you’d like, ‘Hey, try this out.’?
Mark Iwanicki: 00:59:25
I’m really excited by all the Biosyntonie/Tilys products. Tilys is the distributor of the Biosytonie products.
Caspar Szulc: 00:59:32
And, and that’s electromagnetic protection. Mostly energy based products. We’re actually going to have them on in a few weeks for a podcast to talk about cell phone protection, 5g protection, just like all these things.
Mark Iwanicki: 00:59:46
I think it’s, it’s, it’s such a huge missing piece for a lot of people is the, the constant exposure to wifi, to electromagnetic radiation from your phones, from your computers. It’s such a big piece. It’s such a toxic piece for a lot of people. For a lot of people it’s the missing piece.
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