Cover Stories

New Concept: PALM Health

Imagine this: A delicious, healthy breakfast followed by a Pilates class, followed by a medical or mental health consultation and a frosty session in the ‘cryosauna.’ Next, a meeting with a personal health advocate, then lunch, and afterward, 30 minutes of relaxation in the Himalayan salt room before a black sand and pumice radiance scrub or an art class. This is life at PALM Health, which opened its doors in the old Busch’s Grove spot on Clayton Road a few months ago and takes the concept of a full-service wellness spa to a whole new level.

PALM stands for Personalized, Advanced Lifestyle Medicine and, indeed, that’s what this new, state-of-the-art wellness center offers. “We combine medical services, preventive care, fitness, nutrition and spa treatments,” explains Dr. Lauren Munsch Dal Farra, founder and CEO, who says she conceived of the idea back in medical school at Saint Louis University. “Through the collaboration of our expert team of multispecialty doctors, therapists, coaches and instructors, we offer each member a personalized approach to attain, regain and sustain good health,” she says, adding that there may be nowhere else quite like it in the country.

Born and raised in St. Louis (she went to Clayton High School), Munsch Dal Farra, 38, completed her residency at Washington University followed by a cardiology fellowship at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. She moved back to town to open PALM, where she currently sees patients. In addition to Munsch Dal Farra, there are about 40 providers on staff, ranging from medical doctors (primary care, cardiology, neurology, rheumatology, functional medicine specialists and psychiatrists) to personal trainers, fitness instructors, art teachers, counselors, coaches, dieticians/nutritionists, massage therapists, estheticians, and preventive medicine technicians and therapists.

“People come to PALM for a variety of reasons,” Munsch Dal Farra explains. “Each person hasdifferent needs depending on their current health and goals for well-being. Our spa focuses on providing therapeutic and healing treatments for detoxification, stress relief, revitalization and graceful aging, with a goal of avoiding unnecessary medication. Although our doctors are traditionally trained, we turn to pills and procedures as a last resort.” Munsch Dal Farra says members are of all ages, and it’s quite common for whole families to join—mom and dad for concierge medicine and lifestyle classes, a teenager for fitness programs and grandparents for medical specialists like cardiologists, neurologists and rheumatologists.

Among the more innovative treatments PALM offers are cryotherapy and salt inhalation. The former, used by elite athletes and professional sports teams, is a rejuvenating cold therapy that provides anti-inflammatory properties for the skin, joints, muscles and body, releases endorphins, and increases metabolism. The Himalayan salt room is infused with purified, ionized salt particles, which studies show may reduce inflammation and mucus in the lungs, improving respiratory conditions such as asthma, allergies, bronchitis, sinus congestion and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Intravenous therapy, meanwhile, is a method used to correct nutrient deficiencies and helps cells repair and regenerate. “It’s an excellent method for supporting cancer treatment and flu prevention,” Munsch Dal Farra says.

Fitness classes range from mild stretching and yoga to spinning and intensive metabolic workouts using Technogym cardio and kinesis equipment. Lifestyle classes focus on meditation, nutrition, culinary exploration, self-awareness, art and cultural enrichment.

PALM membership ranges from $300 to $3,300 a year, but day and week memberships are available, too. Providers are in-network with most health insurance carriers; many also accept Medicare.

Photo: Bill Barrett

Palm Health is a state-of-the-art wellness center that combines medical services, preventive care, fitness, nutrition and spa treatments. PIctured on the cover: Phsychiatrist and director of mental health Dr. Nigel Lester; director of spa & operations Kathleen Fuller; chief medical officer Dr. Sita Kedia; founder and CEO Dr. Lauren Munsch Dal Farra; executive chef Brice Dal Farra; director of membershi Anney Perrine; and director of fitness Heather Walther. For more information and to schedule a tour, call 314.801.8898 or email

Cover design by Julie Streiler | Cover photo by Bill Barrett

New Concept: PALM Health
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New Concept: PALM Health
PALM stands for Personalized, Advanced Lifestyle Medicine, and that’s what this new, state-of-the-art wellness center offers.
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