Ottawa Speakers

Dr. Eric Westman


The Atkins Diet, From Vilification to Vindication
Uncomplicated Keto: Keeping it Simple

Dr. Eric Westman is the Past President of the Obesity Medicine Association and a Fellow of the Obesity Society. In 2010, he was named the Obesity Medicine Association’s “Bariatrician of the Year” for his work in advancing the field of obesity medicine as well as the Society. He is also a recipient of the Society’s Steelman-Seim Educator Award for advancing the cause of health care through education and teaching. He graduated from Stanford University (A.B.), University of Wisconsin (M.D.), University of Kentucky, and Duke University (M.H.S.) and is board certified in Internal Medicine and Obesity Medicine, and has a master’s degree in clinical research, with over 90 peer-reviewed publications to his name.

He has dedicated his life to helping his patients with various medical conditions such as Type 1 & Type 2 Diabetes, Metabolic Syndrome, Obesity, Hypertension, and many others through diet and lifestyle choices. He believes that using standard medical protocols often treat the symptom and not the cause. He has spent the past 18+ years doing clinical research and providing care to his patients, with an extremely high success rate, through theoretical and practical experience. Over 170 million Americans suffer from obesity, pre-diabetes, and type 2 diabetes. The clinical research he’s conducted at Duke University shows that these American Medical Association-recognized diseases can be put into remission – without medications – through a low carbohydrate, high-fat diet alone. The results have been astounding…

  • 26,000 pounds lost
  • 98% of patients affected by type 2 diabetes off insulin
  • 4,000 patients
  • 28,000 clinical visits


Dr. Robert CywesTreating obesity and diabetogenic diseases from a mental health rather than a nutrition perspective to enhance sustainability

Dr. Cywes specializes in Pediatric and Adult obesity, diabetes and metabolic management. His focus is on helping people understand and treat the true cause of obesity and diabetes. He has been doing metabolic management for 19 years and has helped over 8000 people put their diabetes and pre-diabetes into remission. Dr Cywes firmly believes that obesity and diabetes are not treated by diets, but by a comprehensive change in lifestyle and his practice uses many tools along the journey of becoming obesity and diabetes-free.

His medical training began in Cape Town, South Africa where he received his medical degree from The University of Cape Town training with Prof Tim Noakes amongst others. In 1989, Dr. Cywes moved to North America and completed a year-long residency in pediatric surgery at Ohio State University’s Columbus Children’s Hospital before moving to Canada where he completed his general surgery residency and specialized in minimally invasive surgery at the University of Toronto. Dr. Cywes also earned a PhD in liver biochemistry and immunology and the effect of glucose metabolism on vascular endothelium injury, working with Dr. David Jenkins, the father of the Glycemic Index.

After completing his pediatric surgery fellowship at the University of Michigan’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital, Dr. Cywes was appointed as an Assistant Professor of Pediatric and Fetal Surgery at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee where he did hepatic stem cell research. During this time, Dr. Cywes became increasingly interested in adolescent obesity and the impact of sugar and starch on the liver and metabolic syndrome in young patients. Dr. Cywes’ research led to a comprehensive understanding of the toxicity of chronic excessive carbohydrate consumption as the primary cause of obesity and so-called obesity-related co-morbidities including diabetes. In the late 1990s, Dr Cywes understood that the prevailing treatment of obesity using a Calories in, Calories out (CICO) model was erroneous, and he developed the Carbohydrate-Insulin Model of Obesity and Diabetes (CIMOD). Using this model in combination with his understanding of the psychology of addiction, he developed a clinical program to treat obese adolescents using this approach. Dr. Cywes relocated to Jacksonville, Florida where he joined the Nemours Children’s Clinic and Wolfson Children’s Hospital. This led to a national meeting in Jacksonville where guidelines for adolescent obesity and metabolic disease treatment were established.

In 2004, Dr. Cywes established JSAPA to continue his work in both adolescent and adult obesity and diabetes treatment, and in 2013 opened a practice in West Palm Beach, Florida. He now works with a highly experienced team of professionals from a variety of medical sub-specialties to better care for obese and diabetic patients. He has developed the practice into an internationally recognized Center of Excellence for obesity management. The practice uses a cognitive behavioral therapy approach that addresses carbohydrate addiction, to help patients manage the cause of their illnesses in a sustainable long-term manner. Based on his extensive clinical research and observations, Dr. Cywes lectures internationally regarding the physiological impact of carbohydrate consumption as the primary cause of the current Chronic Non-Communicable Disease (CNCDs) epidemic.  He also lectures on the behavioral aspects of carbohydrate addiction as the cause of obesity, diabetes and related co-morbidities and the use of substance abuse methodology, rather than a diet and exercise approach, to effective sustainable long-term treatment. His approach is from a mental health perspective including diet and emotion management changes to help people not only lose weight and get rid of their diabetes, but also learn strategies to cope with the emotional and stress-related aspects of their lives in a better way to help his patients become happier, healthier more effective members of society. This is a particularly appropriate management strategy in an age of increasing stress, anxiety and addiction.

Dr. Cywes is a member of ASMBS (American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery) and is a member of the ASMBS Childhood Obesity Committee. He is also a member of APSA (American Pediatric Surgery Association). He has earned a Centers of Excellence designation by the Surgical Review Corporation. Dr. Cywes trains other healthcare workers to develop CIMOD care models to help patients maintain weight loss and freedom from diabetes.

Dr. Cywes and his team are active in obesity research, including an ongoing Adolescent trial. He has become one of the foremost authorities in the treatment and management of obesity in adolescents. He recently co-authored a book, Diabetes Unpacked outlining an effective approach to understanding and treating diabetes into remission. Dr. Cywes’ vast experience in pediatric and general surgery serves him well in using all of his skills and tools to treat obesity in adults and children.

Dr Cywes maintains an active clinical practice in Palm Beach Gardens and in Jacksonville as well as conveying the CIMOD message on social media and through his website – and on other social media platforms.

Sally K. Norton, MPH •

SallyKNortonDon’t Let Oxalate Complicate Your Keto Life!  How and Why to Avoid the Biggest Keto Pitfall: Too Much Oxalate

Sally earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition from Cornell University and a master’s degree in Public Health Leadership from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She’s had a decades-long career promoting health, wellness, and holistic healing both at the community level and also through academic research.

Since 2014, she has been an independent educator, researcher, and self-employed health consultant. She spends a lot of time treasure-hunting in medical libraries. Her company, My Food Matters, LLC, provides health and nutrition consultations, speaker services, and tools for recovery from oxalate-related health problems. She regularly presents introductory seminars on the therapeutic value of low-oxalate eating.

Sally practices hot yoga, meditation, and is an avid gardener.

Sally has an information-rich blog at and you can follow her on Facebook, as BetterLowOx on twitter, and as sknorton on Instagram.

Amy Berger •

Berger3 (1)The Personal Fat Threshold Concept:
Questioning conventional thinking about obesity, type 2 diabetes and metabolic disease

Amy Berger, MS, CNS, NTP, is a U.S. Air Force veteran, Certified Nutrition Specialist and Nutritional Therapy Practitioner who specializes in using low-carbohydrate nutrition to help people reclaim their vitality by eating delicious foods, and showing them that getting and staying well doesn’t require starvation, deprivation, or living at the gym. Her motto is, “Real people need real food!” She blogs at, where she writes about a wide range of health and nutrition-related topics, such as insulin, metabolism, weight loss, thyroid function, and more.

Amy Blog with video of her presentation in Perth, Ontario on Insulin & Chronic Hyperinsulinemia

Andrea Lombardi

Andrea LombardiIntroduction to Intermittent Fasting for Weight Management, Health and Longevity

Andrea Lombardi is a seasoned healthcare leader and clinician. She brings a unique vantage point, having practiced family medicine as a Canadian Certified Physician Assistant (CCPA), and participated in strategic planning at the clinic, community, hospital, and provincial levels of the Ontario healthcare system. Her career has also spanned a variety of healthcare niches including mental health, cancer care, primary care, and home and community care.

In addition to practising family medicine part-time, Ms. Lombardi is a coach with the famous Intensive Dietary Management Program – an online-based program, guiding adults through therapeutic fasting protocols for various conditions. The program was founded by Dr. Jason Fung and Megan Ramos, the world leaders in therapeutic fasting.
Andrea’s newest endeavour is organizing a consumer show in Vaughan Ontario, this coming November 3rd. The Low Carb, Real Food Show,
is a one-day event bringing together the very best quality foods, beverages, ingredients and tools to support the low carb, real food and fasting movements. The show will feature both vendors and speakers.

Ms. Lombardi earned an Honours Bachelor of Arts from York University and completed her Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Health Sciences at McMaster University. She earned her CCPA designation in 2012. She is a proud member of the Canadian Clinicians for Therapeutic Nutrition, a grass-roots movement of physicians and allied healthcare professionals who advocate for evidence-based dietary guidelines.

Tiia Bishop – Question Period Moderator

Tiia BishopTiia has been working in the health and wellness field since 2004.  Since graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Biology & Psychology from Wilfrid Laurier University in 2005, she has been working closely with her father at Dr. Bishop & Associates Weight Management Clinic as a health counselor.   During her career, she has attended many Obesity Medicine Association courses, completed a Motivational Interviewing certification at Northeastern University, a Personal Training certification through Can-Fit-Pro, and personal development courses through Landmark. She is currently working towards certification as a Holistic Nutritionist with the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. Tiia works one-on-one with patients to create individualized health plans to help them achieve their health and wellness goals

Wendy Moore – Keto-Retreats Organizer

Wendy Moore

I began my journey into the low carb world in 2015 and then went on to discover keto and fasting, eventually making these an integral part of my lifestyle.

I have been a touring professional musician for over 25 years and in October 2014, I was literally brought to my knees with a massive blood clot from my ankle up through my abdomen.  This clot was discovered only 4 hours before I was to board a flight to Ireland for a 32 show tour.

Had I boarded that plane, it likely would have been game over for me. A few angels got their wings that night I’m sure… and I’m eternally grateful.  It turns out that I have a hereditary blood clotting disorder which is totally manageable with medication.

The night before my clot, I did an easy 10 k run with no swelling symptoms.  I had been a fully active triathlete and half-marathon runner up until then for a number of years.

Miraculously, the blood clot only caused minor circulation damage. With this combined with learning and applying major nutrition changes, I was eventually back to doing the fitness activities that I loved to do despite doctors originally telling me that my mobility would be severely limited.

While I was couch-bound, I had started a lot of reading on reducing inflammation (my left leg was almost twice the size of my right).  It seemed that minimizing sugar and carbs was a big recommendation.

I had also started gaining weight from being more sedentary (and indulging in carb loaded foods) so reducing leg inflammation AND losing 20 pounds was my goal.

Starting a low carb food plan helped both of those goals but not significantly.

I needed to take things a step further so I tried going keto and eventually adding various fasting durations.

Finally success!

Now, 5 years later, I am at my ideal target body weight and my leg inflammation is gone.  I am fully active in swimming, cycling, yoga, strength training and even some running.

I’ve decided to retire from major music touring and to focus on my continued passion for living a keto/fasting lifestyle and to helping others achieve success with their goals, weight loss, and major health benefits of living a keto lifestyle.  I’ve recently been hired by IDM as their Events Coordinator.

The guest speakers at this September 21 keto-Retreat have all been an integral part in my health and wellness journey.   Whether you are new to the worlds of keto, low-carb or nutritional fasting, just have a curiosity about it, or you are ‘keto-ing’ already, I know that this event will be an amazing experience for you.

To quote Kevin Costner in the movie ‘Field of Dreams’:  “Build it and they will come!”   The speakers have all come and you have too.  Many thanks to you all!