IM4US: What got you interested in integrative health and the underserved?
Anu: My journey to wellness over the last 22 years as a pediatrician and the last 15 years as a mother has been focused on building resilience. Being able to bounce back from stress, helping develop neuroplasticity and nourishing intergenerational resilience feels paramount as a parent and as a physician.
What kind of work do you do with the underserved?
Anu: I have been at our SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Pediatrics office in St Louis MO for 18 years that serves an ethnically culturally socioeconomically diverse and medically underserved population
Why did you become a member?
Anu: For thirty years I lived with fibromyalgia/chronic fatigue syndrome and I thought I would have to co-exist with these diseases for the rest of my life. Ten years ago, through a fellowship in Integrative Medicine and a vibrant healing community in St Louis MO, I learned how to bring mind body medicine into my practice and into my home. Joining IM4US and being part of a greater community and purpose and finding a tribe of like minded professionals was wonderful and helps me stay balanced.
How has IM4US impacted your personal or professional life? And what could we do to better support you?
Anu: Being part of the (IM4US) policy committee and attending the congressional hearing on Capitol Hill this past summer had a powerful impact. As I’ve learned about toxic stress, inflammation and chronic disease, nothing seems more important to me than reversing the effects of these through social justice, advocacy and Integrative pediatrics both for my family and for my patients.
Tell us anything else you think would be important to share about you.
Anu French is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Member of the AAP’s Pediatric Integrative Medicine Leadership Committee and Section on Integrative Medicine. She is double board-certified in Pediatrics and Integrative Medicine and has completed a Fellowship in Integrative Medicine through Dr. Andrew Weil’s Center for Integrative Medicine. She serves on the IM4US (Integrative Medicine for the Underserved) Policy Committee. Anu has a special interest in childhood mental health and obesity and has completed training in integrative psychiatry through the University of Colorado and advanced clinical pediatric functional medicine training through the IFM (Institute for Functional Medicine). She offers a community elective in Pediatric Integrative Medicine for medical students/residents and precepts dietetic interns, teaching integrative nutrition as part of the St Louis Fontbonne University’s dietetic program. Anu French is passionate about creating and sharing resources through Lotus Creations website www.anufrench.com and her public Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/LotusCreationsAnuFrench. These include her children’s book, ‘I Am You, You Are Me’ an anti-bullying book filled with colorful words and pictures about unity and inclusivity. Her music CD on meditative music/kirtan, ‘Wake Up My Divinity’ is filled with music she created as she made sound healing a part of her own journey to wellness. She blends mantra and melody to restore harmony and balance. She paints for mind body spirit balance and offers her healing artwork for sale, the ‘I Am’ series and her ‘I Am Vida’ line of accessories to support Literacy for Life programs. She offers trauma informed resilience building, meditative music/mantra, art therapy and mindfulness workshops. She has completed kids yoga teacher training through Yoyo Yoga School and she coauthored and published a review on Yoga in Children included in the AAP’s recent Clinical Policy Statement on the use of Mind-Body Therapies in Children and Youth.