With licensed chiropractors as parents, Dr. Caroline Carpenter didn’t want to follow in their footsteps at first.
She attended college in Fayetteville, receiving a bachelor’s degree in Food Science.
“I always loved food because of the environment I was raised in,” she said. “I wasn’t taught what to eat. I wasn’t taught any health fundamentals. I wasn’t taught any boundaries, you know, how to human. I wasn’t taught how to human well.”
She became “very aware” of her physical appearance as she aged, she said, noting she was trying to “control feeling good and looking good through food.”
“It just wasn’t working because I did not have the basic fundamentals, so I went to food science.”
That’s when she started learning more about food and the link to possible cancer.
“Most of us got into food science to help people, you know, to help people eat healthier through convenience foods,” she said. “And then when we started learning what the industry was really like behind the scenes, it was just like a shot to the heart.”
This insight motivated her to write a book titled “The Body Carpenter: Question Everything.”
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It also led to her pursuing a career in chiropractic care, despite her original feelings of the profession. She received a doctorate of chiropractic from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa, established in 1987 as the first school of chiropractic in the world.
“That’s actually where my parents met,” Carpenter said.
Her parents’ attendance at the school “made me not want to go,” she said. “I wanted to do the opposite.”
After witnessing her father “ruin many businesses” and her mother’s death, she was afraid to go into the same profession, she said.
“And then I had this weird, ‘This is mine, it’s in my blood’ thing,” she said. “So it went from ‘I don’t want to’ to ‘It’s in my blood.’
“I think the biggest difference I make is by opening people’s minds to how amazing their body really is,” she said of her profession in holistic health.
Licensed as a chiropractor since 2012, Carpenter’s private practice, The Body Carpenter, originally opened in Little Rock in 2016. In 2020, she opened a second location in Hot Springs, and recently closed the Little Rock office to work full time in the Spa city.
“I was searching for that perfect place, you know, like that destination, and then found out quickly wherever I go there I am,” she said.
“So I came home. I just came home and then Hot Springs actually spoke to me in a different way and I fit,” Carpenter said.
“What I try to create here was what I wished I had experienced as a patient. I try to get to know the patient. I try to listen. Everyone has different goals. I adjust the way that I wish I had been adjusted.”