Instinct Based Medicine by Dr. Leonard Coldwell

Instinct Based Medicine by Dr. Leonard Coldwell

Instinct Based Medicine How to survive your illness…and your doctor
By Dr. Leonard Coldwell
Strategic Book Publishing, 2008

Leonard Coldwell, NMD, ND, PhD, CNHP lives in Charleston, South Carolina, and is retired, so is not practicing in the U.S. He claims to have cared for more than 35,000 patients in his career of over thirty-five years, treating cancer and other terminal illnesses with a legendary cure rate. Kevin Trudeau pronounces this German- born doctor as his personal physician in Europe and a consultant on his bestselling book Natural Cures They Don’t Want You to Know About. As a teenager, faced with his mother’s diagnosis of terminal liver cancer, the author claims he made a pact with God. The deal was that if God helped him cure his mother, he would spend the rest of his life helping other people with their health. Over thirty years later, he describes his mother as a healthy, energetic and enthusiastic person. And so, Dr. Leonard Coldwell is on a mission to share his trademarked Instinct Based Medical System (IBMS), which claims to help identify and remove the root cause of every disease.

It turns out that Dr. Coldwell identifies mental and emotional stress, which result in decreased energy, as the causal factors in the creation of any and all disease.

The problem for the reader, however, is that it is difficult to figure out what exactly his Instinct Based Medical System is. Dr. Coldwell describes this as a self-help system, and a good part of the last half of the book reads much like a self-help book. There are a few exercises provided. But are these the system?

I don’t think so. Dr. Coldwell speaks of performing twenty-minute sessions. I am left suspecting that the system is comprised of an audio program which must be purchased additionally.

Although Dr. Coldwell emphasizes the importance of nutrition, he gives relatively little attention to the subject. I am rather certain that his views in this area would not mesh well with WAPF principles. He does say that cholesterol is not bad, but also makes statements like “Meat and poultry are full of drugs” (page 165), and “Research in nutrition has proven years ago that milk products (all dairy) are not suitable for human consumption” (page 376). He refers to the website It seems that he makes no distinction between factory-farmed foods and those that are properly produced, nor between real milk and industrial milk.

Echoing Tim Boyd’s review of The Liberation Diet, in the Summer, 2009 edition of Wise Traditions, about the Carnegie and Rockefeller involvement in medical schools and the pharmaceutical industry, Dr. Coldwell states “The medical profession with all its glory was created by John D. Rockefeller to create salespeople for the chemicals he created” (page 126). He makes a good point about the apparent failure of the American Cancer Society, one of the nation’s largest volunteer health organizations, which collects over four hundred million dollars a year, yet has not produced a single breakthrough. He also goes on to say, “The American Cancer Society was also founded at the New York Harvard Club in 1913 by none other than John Rockefeller, Jr. and his friend” (page 138).

After much of what can only be characterized as a scathing (and well-deserved) criticism of the conventional medical system and pharmaceutical industry, I identify him as being anti-prescription drugs, anti-vaccines, anti-fluoride, anti-chemotherapy, anti-radiation, anti-surgery as well as anti-hypnotherapy, anti-Neuro-Linguistic Programming, anti-meditation, anti-yoga and anti-The Secret!

We can all benefit from reducing, not just managing, our stress and exercising a cautious approach to the health care system in our society. Unfortunately, this is the most poorly organized and sloppily written book I have ever read. There are more typos than I have seen in any publication. Some sentences don’t even have periods at the end of them! All of this coupled with a great deal of repetitiveness makes this book nearly impossible to follow. And in the end, Coldwell does not deliver the “help to self help” program as promised. If you are still interested, there are many ways to access him and his information. His email address is and he has two websites: and He says that he will answer all e-mails, but I have e-mailed him numerous times over the last several weeks and have never heard back from him. Dr. Coldwell’s book is not likely to be found in bookstores. It must be special ordered through Barnes and Noble or can be purchased through his websites for $29.95 plus shipping. If you go this route, you may also receive a coupon for $30 off a cleansing program through Universal Formulas.


This article appeared in Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts, the quarterly magazine of the Weston A. Price Foundation, Fall 2009.

Kathryn Niflis Johnson BSN, RN is a natural health educator in Woodbury, MN. She is a seeker and a freedom fighter who has studied natural health for the last 20 years. She specializes in helping people learn to prepare and locate nutrient-dense foods through her company Optimal Health Connection. She can be reached at

© 2015 The Weston A. Price Foundation for Wise Traditions in Food, Farming, and the Healing Arts.