Tim Kelly, founder and chiropractor at Buckhead Wellness Center

Tim Kelly is teacher first, chiropractor second.

Tim Kelly, founder and chiropractor at Buckhead Wellness Center

Tim Kelly, founder and chiropractor at Buckhead Wellness Center, is 72 and, remarkably, has no aches and pains. The spry septuagenarian credits this to the same anti-inflammatory wellness regimen that he recommends to patients. “Inflammation is involved with every pathology, every sickness, every disease. I’m an anti-inflammatory doctor,” he says of his work that combines chiropractic care with a whole-life approach that largely takes into consideration diet, among other things. In addition to spine and joint adjustments, Kelly brings in nutrition counseling, supplements, applied kinesiology, orthotics and other tools and techniques as needed to help patients. Here, we chat with him about how he works and the nutrition practices he advocates.

How do you approach chiropractic care differently from others in your field?

I take a lot of time with new patients to uncover what is causing them pain or illness. Doctor means teacher. I want to help you stay out of my office and fix the problem versus seeing you for a short amount of time on an ongoing basis. If you have a disease, you’re either doing too many of the wrong things or too little of the right things for your body. Also, we do non-force adjusting without any pushing or cracking. For the last 20 years, I have been using an electrical adjusting device that gently taps the joint that’s stuck and makes a sound. When the joint is moving again, it makes a different sound. Everything is gentle and designed to offer relief right away.

What kind of diet do you follow and suggest to most patients?

I recommend eating what all animals on the planet eat: other animals and plants that are in season. That means fresh, organic, non-GMO produce that is picked when ripe, so buying from local farms is great. When are wheat, corn, soy, rice and beans in season? For a short period of time. No animal on the planet eats those regularly. Most people don’t realize that grains inflame. Genetically engineered corn is legally a pesticide now. When you buy an apple in July, it’s been gassed and stored in a warehouse for a whole year. All that said, if you do enough things right, you can do some things wrong.

You are not a fan of eating grains. Why is that?

So many people have gut issues like IBS, diarrhea and bloating because of U.S. grains.

What is your best wellness advice?

Chew your food well, don’t eat foods that your body doesn’t want, exercise, don’t smoke cigarettes, get fresh air and have lots of good friends. I tell my patients to say out loud what they want, such as “Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better.” It works.

How do you use kinesiology in your practice?

We figure out through muscle testing what the body would like to have or avoid—what helps or drains you. If you eat or drink something that you’re reactive to, you’ll go weak. The body tells you what it wants or can’t have, but people don’t always listen. I have seen patients have dramatic improvements with key supplements that their bodies needed.

What do cold lasers do for pain relief?

Cold lasers are not a cure-all, but they help to rehabilitate muscles by shooting particles of light into cells. Some will hit the mitochondria, which is what turns sugar to energy. That is like blowing on embers in a fire; it cranks up and creates massive amounts of energy in the treatment area. So we can put the laser on a patient’s weak muscle and instantly make that muscle stronger. You’ll see the Atlanta Braves getting their necks and shoulders lasered in dugouts during games. Raphael Nadal used one on his knee in between U.S. Open sets. It looks like a red flashlight.


PHOTO: Joann Vitelli

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