Physician Profile: Ana M. Negrón, M.D.
Early in Dr. Negrón’s career, she saw a contradiction in patient care: While studies revealed that poor nutrition and physical inactivity contribute to heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and depression, doctors always seemed to favor drugs over lifestyle changes, because many physicians believed patients wouldn’t make the commitment to change.
But Dr. Negrón believed otherwise. After seeing directly how diet could actually reverse the progression of certain chronic illnesses and then learning to prepare plant-based meals for her family, she began sharing the message with her patients. Approaching treatment as a team effort, she and her patients swap healthy recipes, pore over grocery lists, and create realistic treatment plans that “allow them to be candid and not feel judged,” says Dr. Negrón.
PCRM has been an important resource for her practice. “All around my clinic you’ll find PCRM’s colorful ‘New Four Food Groups’ posters, emphasizing a vegan diet for good health,” she says.
The response from patients has been overwhelmingly positive. And although Dr. Negrón still sees buttery Danishes and cream cheese-covered bagels served at cardiology meetings, she knows a new generation of students is getting the right message. “Both my residents and my patients are reminded of how effective their own positive contribution to wellness really is,” she says.
Dr. Negrón practices with Community Volunteers in Medicine and serves as preceptor with Crozer Family Practice Residency in Pennsylvania.