Submitted to The Post

More adults are turning to alternative medicine as solutions to health problems, and Well Works, an innovative learning space developed by local integrative physician Dr. Lesley James is now helping residents to take charge of their own well-being in a holistic way. The facility, which opened in May, applies integrative and functional medicine through health and wellness classes, and will host a fall open house, Falling into Well Works as an introduction to new seasonal programming on Tuesday, September 29.

Individuals, families and practitioners who are interested in learning more about alternative treatments to health issues are invited to attend the open house from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at 2851 Clover Street in Pittsford. The event will feature informative stations that will include an overview of Well Works, class previews on gut health, plant based cooking, aromatherapy and more. Attendees can meet with Dr. James, and Well Works affiliates Lora Downie, certified health coach and plant based cooking instructor, Heather Carrera, nutritionist and Leah J. Barabasz, certified aromatherapist. Healthy refreshments and tea will be also be served.

A board certified family physician, Dr. James graduated from Jefferson Medical College in 1997 and has been practicing medicine since 2002. She moved from Dover, DE to Pittsford in 2004 to serve as a family physician at Thompson Family Practice. After completing her fellowship in Integrative Medicine, she made it her mission to enrich conventional medicine with a more natural approach to prevention in one holistic office, and opened her own practice in 2011 at the Barn Bazaar. Specifically, Dr. James has expertise in both integrative medicine, which considers body, mind and spirit in creating a unique picture of health (a combination of conventional and alternative medicine) and functional medicine, which addresses the underlying causes of disease.

With wellness education at the core of her practice and an ongoing passion for

learning, Dr. James constantly participates in educational opportunities in functional, integrative, environmental and herbal medicine. Her desire to bring the most up-to-date knowledge not only to her patients, but to the Rochester community led her to expand her practice with the creation of Well Works.

“I believe the best healers are within us, and Well Works is the beginning of a healing community,” said Dr. James. “It’s easy for people to become confused with all the health claims out there – from which diet is best to what supplement to take – and that’s where Well Works comes in. The classes we offer provide accurate and reliable information designed to help people take back their health by learning simple holistic skills that can be implemented at home.”

In addition to wellness classes, Well Works hosts a regular Integrative Journal Club for practitioners of all kinds, and offers webinars from the Institute of Functional Medicine, known as Functional Forums.

Fall classes begin September 10 and run through the end of November. With a growing body of evidence that shows seasonal change can have a significant impact on our physical and mental health, the Well Works offerings follow a seasonal pattern.

“Many of us have lost the connection between health and season, and I’m thrilled that our fall programming will help folks to get back on track,” said Dr. James. “Autumn is the ideal time to focus on the body’s natural detoxification mechanisms and improve gastrointestinal function to prime the immune system and shore up the body’s reserves. This topic will be highlighted during our open house, which is a great event for people to get a better idea of what Well Works is all about.”

The September 29 open house is free and open to the public. RSVP is requested at For more information on Well Works, a complete listing of fall classes, or to register online, visit or call (585) 641-7102. To learn more about Dr. James, visit