By Brianna Connors
Dr. Kinder Fayssoux is a family medicine practitioner with Board Certifications in both Family Medicine and Integrative Medicine. She is also one of only 900 doctors worldwide who have a certification in Functional Medicine, which she received from the Institute for Functional Medicine. With thirteen years in the medical field under her belt, Kinder is currently practicing and teaching at Eisenhower Medical Associates and in her own private practice, Ohm and Oot Medical Wellness. Kinder’s passion is teaching and sharing her unique perspective on incorporating conventional medicine with a full-body, holistic approach for longevity.
Growing up in Northern California, Kinder was raised by her parents, who immigrated from India to the United States. They instilled in all five of their children the importance of getting a good education. As a result, school was always a priority in the household.
Kinder’s interest in the medical industry began at a young age, influenced by two uncles, both family practice practitioners, and her own mother, who was trained as a nurse. While her mother did not actively practice nursing at a clinic, she was the full-time caretaker of her husband, who was diagnosed with ALS when Kinder was 12 years old. Additionally, Kinder recalls her mother being very conscious about what her family was eating, doing for exercise, and looking after their health overall. Speaking to Top Doctor Magazine, Dr. Kinder reminisces that this was perhaps her first true introduction to Functional Medicine.
After graduating cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and a Minor in Theatre from Santa Clara University, Kinder applied to get into medical school. When she was not accepted, she considered furthering her newfound love and interest in theatre. But when she presented the idea of trying her luck in Hollywood to her parents, they were quick to advise her that: “Good Indian girls don’t go to Hollywood, please stick to your smart plan…go to medical school.”
She applied a second time to medical school and was accepted to Saint Louis University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri.
In the year between applying to medical school the first and second time, Kinder attended a post-baccalaureate program to better prepare for medical school. A former investment banker, Reginald Fayssoux, looking for a major career shift in which he could truly help people was also in the same post-bac program. Reggie and Kinder became fast friends and then began dating. When they were both accepted to medical schools, they remained committed to the relationship even though it was long-distance. Dr. Kinder believes that it was because they were both in medical school that they stayed together as most students end their relationships within the first year of training. Both understood the busyness and pressure the other was undergoing.
During her medical studies, Kinder gravitated toward specializing in family medicine, following in her uncles’ footsteps. This choice ended up being the perfect field of expertise for her. The diversity and ability to treat people anywhere from babies to grandparents is something Dr. Kinder loves.
“[Family medicine] is so fun and so diverse! You really get to know and see everything. To be able to see kids and adults and women and men is really cool.” – Dr. Kinder Fayssoux
While at the University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Kinder’s father passed away. His years-long battle with ALS and her mother’s devoted care for him are two factors that fueled Dr. Kinder’s desire to go into the medical industry. And after his passing, only strengthened her decision. In fact, after his passing, she briefly considered going into Neurology to help people and families going through what her father and their family had gone through. However, this proved to be a little too painful for her, and she stayed with family medicine. Upon graduation from medical school, Dr. Kinder completed her residency at Crozer Keystone Family Medicine Residency in Springfield, Pennsylvania.
During her residency, two important things took place that would shape Kinder’s life and career. First, she was introduced further to and found her love for the functional approach to medicine. And second, she and Dr. Reginald Fayssoux were married. At Crozer Keystone Family Medicine, one of Dr. Kinder’s attendings (a supervising physician to whom a resident must present their cases) was a woman she describes as ahead of her time and very much into lifestyle medicine. Unlike some of the other attendings, this woman would want her residents to find out what a patient was eating, how many greens or how much exercise they were getting, among other unconventional diagnosing questions. As a joke, the attending was referred to as the “dancing lettuce lady.” But as the attending proved – there are other ways to treat and help patients. In hindsight, Dr. Kinder now laughingly admits that she has turned into a slight version of the dancing lettuce lady as she has seen the benefits of lifestyle medicine even though she didn’t fully appreciate it during residency.
At the end of her residency, Dr. Kinder was pregnant with twins, and her husband, Dr. Reginald Fayssoux, was starting his Fellowship. They moved around for the Fellowship for a while before moving back to California.
Upon moving back, Dr. Kinder went to work as a Faculty member at the Eisenhower Health Residency Program. For the first four years there, she was involved in building the program and is now one of the attending physicians training residents in family medicine. Her niche is in teaching the residents to see outside of the box of conventional medicine. With her Board Certification in Integrative Medicine and certification in Functional Medicine, Dr. Kinder has extensive knowledge and a passion for helping people who want to shift their lifestyles and change their habits to improve their lives and health.
Like many other medical students and beginning doctors, Dr. Kinder remembers the advancement to when she could finally prescribe medications as a big, exciting moment. But after a while, that feeling gets old.
“It [medications] doesn’t make people better. Often, one medication leads to another medication, especially with things like hypertension and diabetes. The people who truly want to shift and change… that’s where you can really help people.” – Dr. Kinder Fayssoux
There are not many nutritional, lifestyle, or functional medicine approaches taught in conventional medical training in the States. This is not altogether a bad thing. Conventional medicine is critical – antibiotics and other standard treatments save many lives. The problem is that, as Dr. Kinder remarked, there is no balance with the preventative side of medicine where functional medicine can step inefficiently.
At the beginning of this year, Dr. Kinder started her personal practice Ohm and Oot Medical Wellness in Palm Desert, California. It is a continuation of what she has been doing for years with the Eisenhower Health clinic. Now, she can further her treatment plans to include peptides, IV nutrition, and supplements that may not necessarily be covered or approved by traditional medicine clinics. Additionally, she specializes in bioidentical hormones, weight management, longevity, genetic medicine, and the full spectrum of functional and integrative medical care. Her goal for the practice is to provide very customized and personal approaches that everyone can use. For her, it is all about optimizing your health in the future.
“I truly believe that my biggest responsibility as a physician is to build relationships with my patients so that they can teach me about who they are and where they want to be with respect to their health so that I can help them figure out how to get there with as few medications as possible. If they are willing to put in the work and change their lifestyles, together, we can change their diseases.” – Dr. Kinder Fayssoux
Dr. Kinder’s passion for teaching and Functional Medicine is combined in a multitude of ways. First, through her private practice. And second, with her teaching endeavors. One of her goals for the near future is to create online courses and webinars that can help people realize the benefits and possibilities that holistic lifestyle treatments can have on a person’s health. She believes that functional medicine should truly be the medicine of the future and hopes that it will one day be covered by insurance and available to the masses.
One of the ways in which she believes this can be accomplished is through RPM (remote patient monitoring). As the field of healthcare continues to ebb and flow for years to come, one thing will remain the same: people will need medical attention and care. Through RPM, many hurdles faced in medicine can be overcome, especially for chronic diseases and illnesses. In some chronic illnesses, Dr. Kinder says that many patients have more than one making optimization difficult.
“If we can provide a way for patients to keep their numbers under control, get access to the care they need, and monitor their symptoms, we can prevent things from happening in the future. Which keeps the patient healthier and saves everyone money.” – Dr. Kinder Fayssoux
RPM, like other Telehealth options, offers the highest caliber of quality for care. With remote patient monitoring, doctors can diagnose faster, monitor more efficiently, and with more assurance, enabling preventative care, not just reactionary. Access and availability are also increased as a patient can connect with a doctor practically anywhere, globally. All RPM devices are wireless and track a patient’s vitals in real-time. With this type of technology, it is possible to see when a patient is taking their medications, if the proper dosage is achieved, and watch the results. Of course, in some cases, person-to-person interaction is essential for healthcare needs. RPM can help facilitate appointment scheduling and provide the most accurate readings for a doctor to review.