Passionate about Metabolic Mental Health

Our team, driven by a shared vision, works toward a future in which metabolic health is understood as key to overall well-being. Together, we are dedicated to transforming human health with evidence-based approaches to improving brain metabolism. 

Passionate about Metabolic Mental Health

Our team, driven by a shared vision, works toward a future in which metabolic health is understood as key to overall well-being. Together, we are dedicated to transforming human health with evidence-based approaches to improving brain metabolism. 

Passionate about Metabolic Mental Health

Our team, driven by a shared vision, works toward a future in which metabolic health is understood as key to overall well-being. Together, we are dedicated to transforming human health with evidence-based approaches to improving brain metabolism. 

Our Founders

Our Founders

Our Founders

David Baszucki and Jan Ellison Baszucki launched Metabolic Mind, an initiative of Baszucki Group, to share information and resources about the emerging field of metabolic psychiatry.

You can learn more about David and Jan and the research they are funding on Baszucki Group’s website.

The Metabolic Mind Team

The Metabolic Mind Team

The Metabolic Mind Team

Bret Scher, MD

Director of Metabolic Mind and Host of Metabolic Mind YouTube

Bret is the host of the Metabolic Mind YouTube channel and podcast. He is a board-certified cardiologist, lipidologist, and leading expert in therapeutic uses of metabolic therapies, including ketogenic diets. Prior to joining Baszucki Group, he was the medical director at DietDoctor.com, an online platform promoting improving metabolic health through low carb nutrition. Bret has spent most of his 20-year career as a preventive cardiologist, helping people improve their metabolic health and preventing heart disease using low-carb nutrition and lifestyle interventions. His passion for educating the public about the benefits of metabolic therapies grew from his experience with the prevailing medical teaching, which frequently misrepresents nutrition science and undervalues metabolic health. Bret received a BS in biology from Stanford University and an MD from The Ohio State University College of Medicine.

Hannah Warren

Mental Health Communications and Advocacy Manager

Mental Health Communications and Advocacy Manager

Hannah writes and advocates for increased awareness of the emerging field of metabolic psychiatry. In July 2021, she implemented ketogenic therapy and ultimately put her bipolar 1 disorder into complete remission. She now devotes her career to disseminating the science of metabolic therapies and working to make them a first-line treatment option. Previously, Hannah served as marketing and development director at Serenity Hospice and Home, a nonprofit serving terminally ill patients and their loved ones. She also founded Jhoole, an eco-fashion social enterprise that employs women in India. Hannah has an MA in Fashion Entrepreneurship from London College of Fashion and a BA in South Asian studies and linguistics from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies.

Rachael Xiong

Program Associate

Rachael manages Metabolic Mind’s digital presence and communications. Prior to joining Baszucki Group, she worked at wikiHow, a mission-driven internet company, where she led expert relations, developed site features, and managed digital social content. Beyond her professional interests, Rachael has a heart for giving back to her community. She has a particular passion for improving access to healthcare and education. During college, Rachael volunteered in free clinic settings to ensure uninsured patients receive care. Additionally, she has led programs for Hmong youth and mentored high school students from underrepresented communities to promote the pursuit of higher education. Rachael received a BS in human biology from Stanford University.

Baszucki Group Neuroscience Team

Baszucki Group Neuroscience Team

Kirk Nylen, PhD

Managing Director, Neuroscience

Kirk leads Baszucki Group’s neuroscience team. He brings extensive experience in health and research, most recently serving as the deputy scientific director and vice president of research and informatics at the Ontario Brain Institute, where he led the Institute’s approach to collaborative research networks, informatics and analytics, and knowledge translation. He previously wrote healthcare strategy and business plans for Ontario’s provincial cancer agency. Kirk is a member of the Milken Institute’s LeadersLink program and a Fellow of the European Institute for Innovation and Technology. He has authored dozens of academic and policy publications and serves as an adjunct professor and lecturer at the University of Toronto. Kirk holds an MSc and Ph.D. from the University of Toronto and a BA in psychology from the University of Saskatchewan.

Julie Milder, PhD

Director, Neuroscience

Julie leads Baszucki Group’s clinical trial partnerships and other key neuroscience initiatives. Previously, Julie was associate director at Jazz Pharmaceuticals, where she led the US Medical Affairs Training and Excellence team to work collaboratively across multiple focus areas, including epilepsy/movement disorders, sleep, hematology, and oncology. Prior to that, she served as the first scientist on staff for CURE Epilepsy, the largest non-governmental funder of epilepsy research. She initiated CURE Epilepsy’s first team science initiative, which sought to bring researchers and clinicians together to work toward a common goal of finding a new treatment for infantile spasms, a devastating epilepsy of infancy. Julie received a PhD in neuroscience from the University of Colorado, Denver and a BA in biology/neuroscience from Washington University in St. Louis.

Burcin Ikiz, PhD

Science Program Officer

A key member of the neuroscience team, Burcin is a neuroscientist with more than 15 years of experience in research and consulting, mainly in the field of neurodegenerative diseases. Previously, she worked as a data scientist at the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, where she developed new tools and technologies to support patient-driven research for rare and neurological diseases. Burcin also initiated motor neuron disease research efforts at Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and led preclinical development for several biotech startups. She is passionate about making scientific knowledge accessible to everyone, and occasionally writes for popular science outlets, such as Psychology Today, about recent scientific discoveries in neuroscience and what they mean to patients. Burcin received a Ph.D. in neurobiology from Columbia University and a B.Sc. in biomedical computation from Stanford University.

Clinical Advisors

Clinical Advisors

Expert Minds Shaping Our Metabolic Mental Health Revolution

Expert Minds Shaping Our Metabolic Mental Health Revolution

Matt Bernstein, MD

Dr. Matt Bernstein is chief medical officer at Ellenhorn, where he has also served as a psychiatrist since 2010. He received his MD from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and trained at Harvard’s MGH-McLean Psychiatry residency-training program, where he served as chief resident. Dr. Bernstein remained at McLean after residency as a psychiatrist-in-charge, later serving as assistant medical director of the Schizophrenia and Bipolar Inpatient Program.

Lori Calabrese, MD

Dr. Lori Calabrese is a psychiatrist in Connecticut, expert faculty for ASKP3, and an expert in metabolic psychiatry using food as medicine to treat psychiatric conditions. Dr. Calabrese is a graduate of The John Hopkins University School of Medicine and completed her residency training through Harvard Medical School at Massachusetts General Hospital. She has served as clinical faculty at Harvard Medical School and Yale School of Medicine.

Georgia Ede, MD

Dr. Georgia Ede is a Harvard-trained psychiatrist specializing in nutritional and metabolic psychiatry. She has used ketogenic diets to help her patients for over two decades. She created the first CME course training physicians in the use of ketogenic therapy as mental illness treatment. She educates the public about nutrition science, metabolism, and mental health through her international speaking engagements, website, and her first  book: Change Your Diet, Change Your Mind.

Nicole Laurent, LMHC

Nicole Laurent is a licensed mental health counselor and founder of mentalhealthketo.com. She delivers ketogenic metabolic therapy to her clients with mood disorders, has undertaken post-graduate training in nutrition and integrative health, and has engaged with the public through her blog, podcast appearances, and social media. She has developed the first course training non-prescribers to support their patients in using ketogenic therapy for mental disorders. 

Chris Palmer, MD

Dr. Chris Palmer is founder and director of the Metabolic and Mental Health Program at McLean Hospital and an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. As a practicing psychiatrist for almost three decades, he uses metabolic and ketogenic therapies to treat patients with severe mental illness. In 2022, Dr. Palmer published Brain Energy, which explores a new hypothesis of energy and mitochondrial dysfunction as an underlying cause of mental illness.

Dr. Chris Palmer is founder and director of the Metabolic and Mental Health Program at McLean Hospital and an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. As a practicing psychiatrist for almost three decades, he uses metabolic and ketogenic therapies to treat patients with severe mental illness. In 2022, Dr. Palmer published Brain Energy, which explores a new hypothesis of metabolic  and mitochondrial dysfunction or dysregulation as an underlying cause of mental illness.

Beth Zupec-Kania, RDN, CD

Beth Zupec-Kania is a registered dietitian nutritionist, consultant with the Charlie Foundation, and a leading expert in the use of therapeutic ketogenic diets in the treatment of epilepsy and other neurological and psychiatric conditions. She designed KetoDietCalculator, a free resource used by nutritionists and the public, has written educational guides, created a training module to educate nutritionists and psychiatrists, and is a co-author on many scientific papers.

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