#72 The Cancer Series (2 of 3). Integrative Oncology with Dr Catherine Zollman

07 Oct 2020

Today I’m chatting with a good friend and colleague Dr. Catherine Zollman, who is Medical Director at Penny Brohn UK, a charity which in provides Integrative Support and Self-Management Education for people affected by cancer. She is also an NHS GP, an Honorary Clinical Lecturer at the University of Bristol, and was Macmillan Clinical Cancer Lead for BNSSG Clinical Commissioning Group 2014-2019. She studied medical oncology before specialising in General Practice and completing a Fellowship in Integrative Medicine (University of Arizona).

On the podcast we discuss a number of topics including:

  • What integrative oncology means?
  • The need to bring the worlds of conventional medicine, lifestyle medicine and complementary medicine together
  • Intelligent combinations of lifestyle and integrative approaches to deliver better outcomes
  • Explaining the services that PBUK usually offers, and what it offers now during lockdown
  • Breaking down the barriers and why healthcare still feels so "siloed" and oppositional?
  • Why is evidence on the effectiveness of lifestyle interventions not better known or understood by the conventional medical system?
  • Why does medicine/conventional healthcare not harness the power of the activated patient more?
  • Working with Possibility vs Probability - how to avoid False Hope and False Hopelessness and find a middle path of Realistic Hope.
  • How to enthuse conventional healthcare professionals and students about the power of nutrition, movement, breathing practices, nature, therapeutic relationships, creativity, realistic hope, love, meaning and purpose to help people live better and need less medication.
  • Challenges in researching lifestyle and complementary approaches
  • Outcomes as measured in a realistic and methodical way to inspire and enact change


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GUEST: Dr Catherine Zollman

Dr. Catherine Zollman, BA Physiol (Oxon) MBBS (London) MRCP, MRCGP, Cert Med Ed (Cardiff), Fellow Integrative Medicine (Arizona) Medical Director, Penny Brohn UK, Chapel Pill Lane, Bristol BS20 0HH, UK, Dr. Catherine Zollman is Medical Director at Penny Brohn UK, a charity which in provides Integrative Support and Self-Management Education for people affected by cancer. She is also an NHS GP, an Honorary Clinical Lecturer at the University of Bristol, and was Macmillan Clinical Cancer Lead for BNSSG Clinical Commissioning Group 2014-2019. She studied medical oncology before specialising in General Practice and completing a Fellowship in Integrative Medicine (University of Arizona). In 1999 Dr Zollman co-authored the British Medical Journal’s “ABC of Complementary Medicine” series. In 2001, with Professor Trevor Thompson, Dr Zollman created and developed University of Bristol Medical School’s pioneering and award-winning Whole Person Care Course, a compulsory unit for first year medical students which introduced them to the ideas of holistic and integrative perspectives in health and medicine. She is a Council Member of the College of Medicine, is on the Steering Committee of the British Society of Integrative Oncology, and is a Committee Member of the Clinical Practice working group for the international Society of Integrative Oncology. She was Co-organiser and Chair of the Steering Committee for College of Medicine’s Conference on Food: the Forgotten Medicine, Royal Society of Medicine in 2016 and 2018. In 2016 she was shortlisted for Outstanding Achievement in the Bristol Post Heath and Care Awards. She believes that all medical encounters are an opportunity to help people understand how building their own resilience can play a key part in managing their symptoms and improving their health. She is passionate about the connections between planetary and human health and believes that it is very hard for us to achieve optimum wellbeing if we consider ourselves as separate from nature. She keeps up her own resilience by cooking, eating and spending time with her family, cycling, walking and swimming in nature, and by playing the clarinet in orchestras and chamber groups in Bristol.

with Dr Catherine Zollman

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