Graeme Bradshaw has Built the Largest Holistic Healthcare Institute in Asia

What’s your story?
As a farm boy in Tasmania I was always interested in nature and knew first-hand the health benefits. At University, I did my Science degree in biology and from there, I entered the field of natural medicine, training in Sydney as a naturopath and homeopath. I moved to Hong Kong in the 1990s, seeing a need to bring natural medicine here. I founded IMI – the Integrated Medicine Institute – now the largest holistic healthcare institute in Asia with over 30 practitioners helping and healing clients in-clinic and in-organisations. 

In 2003 I set up INL – Integrated Nutraceuticals Ltd – to supply clinics with nutritional based medicines and supplements. We now supply some 50 clinics with clinical grade supplements from leading international practitioner-only brands. In 2008, I was invited by Dairy Farm Group to establish their wellness centres. There are now over 20 outlets for supplements in Hong Kong’s leading supermarkets. However, at heart, I am more a doctor than an entrepreneur and I still see clients four days a week.

What excites you most about your industry?
The public is leading the way to change how medicine is practiced. Especially over the last decade, we’re seeing people recognise the need for holistic and integrative healthcare, which has moved from fringe to a general interest, especially in the educated demographic. This is forcing more conventional medics to pay attention, and it’s now becoming integrated into many clinics. 

Organisations are also sitting up and taking notice. Leaders are recognising the need to support their employees’ wellbeing, which – in a fast-paced, stressed-out city like Hong Kong – is incredibly important. We recently launched “Superhero Syndrome” workshops for professional men and women and it excites us to see leaders now proactively equipping their teams with the tools to be healthy and successful. 

Healthcare is changing. Now, natural health approaches such as diet, supplements, care of the human frame, fitness and mental health are seen as keys to wellbeing, and we at IMI are seen as trustworthy guides in that journey.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I’ve lived here in Hong Kong now for 30 years!

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Hong Kong – since our health-care market here operates in a very liberal jurisdiction, we at IMI, can provide supplements and health-care modalities freely. The city has its positives, but the high pollution, exposure to toxins, nutrient-poor foods, high stress levels and many other factors, present multiple physical, mental and emotional challenges. We know, as an organisation, we can make a positive difference to Hong Kongers in their home and work lives, which means our practitioners and staff are all making a meaningful contribution to this city we call home. It’s fulfilling work.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Listen, to understand others. It’s this advice that helps me to better serve clients and identify the obvious and not-so-obvious factors that may be affecting them.

Who inspires you?
The founder of the field of “Functional Medicine” Dr Geoff Bland is my hero. He is an internationally recognised leader in the nutritional medicine field for over 40 years, and was an understudy to two-time Nobel Laureate Dr. Linus Pauling. Geoff led me into a deeper understanding of individualised medicine and the relevant testing required to do this. One of his books is “Genetic Nutritioneering.”

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
OK, so I’m a bit of a boffin and I have a passion to study the details! Recently it’s about how the Mitochondria – the so-called powerhouses in our cells – are pretty much the mastermind of most health outcomes. They are organelles that take in nutrients, break them down, and create energy-rich molecules for the cell. They’re very sensitive to environmental toxins, to gut bacteria,

and also to psychological stress; indeed, they make the stress hormone cortisol! These organelles are connected to everything – environment, mind and much of our health-giving biochemistry. Feeling tired? They’re involved. Got cancer? They’re involved. Pretty much most things disease-wise are connected to the mitochondria. So, it’s great to be learning how to skilfully protect, detox and repair them to produce the vital energy forces needed to make us well again.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I’d have bought the space I ran the clinic in – to make money on the real estate gain!

How do you unwind?
Exercise is key for me, and pretty much every client I see who is successfully managing their stress is exercising 3 times or so a week. Paying attention to the value of sleep – I make it a rule to get 7 hours or else my brain is not up to the brilliance level my clients deserve! And I have to get out into nature regularly, so a holiday is usually to regenerate outdoors rather than going to another city.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Probably Japan; I like the food, the mindful culture and its respect for nature.

Everyone in business should read this book:
“Team Quotient – How to Build High Performance Leadership Teams that Win Every Time” by my friend and Global Wellness partner, Douglas Gerber. Douglas has a passion and a talent for building and nurturing successful corporate teams. For our business, this team approach means we have kept all our talented, best staff, for over a decade.

Shameless plug for your business:
Integrated Medicine Institute (IMI) is the largest natural medicine clinic in Hong Kong and throughout Asia. Trusted and respected by thousands, we’ve led the integrated and holistic way since 1990 – helping people at every stage of life enjoy optimal health and wellbeing through an unparalleled range of specialist services, treatments, and diagnostic and functional medicine testing. IMI’s Integrated Healing Approach takes into account seven key factors – seemingly unrelated, but intimately connected – that can influence a person’s health and wellbeing, which means we go beyond the obvious to help clients to heal, then rebalance and evolve again. 

In 2019, IMI launched IMI Corporate Wellness – a comprehensive programme led by experienced wellness practitioners to address every facet of professional wellness and to cultivate healthy, thriving organisations.

How can people connect with you?
For my clinical services – [email protected]
For corporate approaches – [email protected] 
Our website is – www.imi.com.hk
LinkedIn page is – linkedin.com/company/imi-integrated-medicine-institute
Facebook page is – https://www.facebook.com/IMIHK/

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connects’ series of more than 500 interviews

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Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder and CEO of MBH Corporation PLC. He is the author of three best-selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’, ‘Agglomerate’ and ‘Entrepreneurial Investing’.

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