Sheila Patel, M.D.

Medical Director

Dr. Sheila Patel is the Chopra Center’s Medical Director and a board-certified family physician who is passionate about bringing holistic healing practices into the Western medical system. She earned her M.D. at the University of Wisconsin Medical School and completed her residency in family medicine at the Ventura County Medical Center in Southern California. For more than a decade, she practiced full-spectrum family medicine, from prenatal care and deliveries to ER coverage and primary care for all ages.

At the Chopra Center, Dr. Patel offers integrative medical consultations that combine the best in conventional medicine with the wisdom of Ayurveda. She also teaches at the Chopra Center’s 6-day and 10-day Perfect Health programs, and is certified as an instructor of Ayurveda, yoga, and meditation. Her special interests include preventive medicine and mind-body medicine, with an emphasis on Ayurveda. Her experience in treating a full range of medical conditions gives her the ability to effectively incorporate lifestyle practices into a patient’s treatment plan.

Dr. Patel also serves as the Clinical Director for the Chopra Center’s research team. She enjoys the opportunity to bring light to the mechanisms of action of mind-body practices, giving them scientific validation. Her hope is that by confirming the benefits of the practices, more patients will gain access to these life-enhancing techniques.

Dr. Patel’s medical writings on a variety of topics have been featured in many integrative and holistic publications, including the Chopra Center’s online newsletter. She is a Volunteer Faculty Member for the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine, where she participates in their Ambulatory Care Apprenticeship Program for first-year and second-year medical students at an outpatient family medicine office. She also mentors medical students at the Chopra Center as part of their integrative medicine rotations. Dr. Patel is an engaging speaker who enjoys bringing the principles of Ayurveda, yoga, and meditation to the public as well as to other health care providers. She is a featured lecturer at the Chopra Center’s signature mind-body medicine conference, Journey into Healing. She has also served as a guest lecturer at several integrative medical conferences, as well as at Bastyr University in San Diego and UCSD School of Medicine.

Articles by Sheila Patel

The Ayurvedic formulary describes hundreds of plants that have the ability to keep us healthy as well as help us heal from disease. One of the most well-known and commonly used herbs is triphala, which means “three fruits.” As its name implies, triphala is a combination of the fruits of three... Read More
When choosing the right, or “best” physician, the first step is to remember that you’re choosing the best physician for you, as an individual. This takes into account your definition of health and your goals for healing and wellness. Your best physician is one who shares your perspective on health... Read More
If you want an inexpensive and delicious way to improve your heart health, add more beans to your diet. Beans are a low-fat, high-fiber protein source, and they provide multiple phytochemicals that help reduce your risk of many health conditions, including heart disease. Beans belong to a family of... Read More
If you feel that stress is affecting your physical health and emotional well-being, you’re not alone. An estimated 75 to 90 percent of all doctor visits are for stress-related issues and ailments, and this is certainly what I see in my medical practice. But don’t let this information increase your... Read More
 “For breath is life, and if you breathe well you will live long on earth.” ~Sanskrit proverb Breath is essential to life. It is the first thing we do when we are born and the last thing we do when we leave. In between that time, we take about half a billion breaths. What we may not realize is that... Read More