Dr. Marla Shapiro

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle extends far beyond diet and exercise.

On-Air Medical Consultant for CTV National News and Host of Dr. Marla and Friends

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Dr. Marla Shapiro | On-Air Medical Consultant for CTV National News and Host of Dr. Marla and Friends

Dr. Marla Shapiro is one of Canada’s most trusted guides to personal health and well-being. A warm, compelling, and compassionate speaker, she gives practical advice on developing and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Dr. Shapiro offers specialized talks on women and family health care and discusses the pressing issues at the forefront of today’s news. 

Dr. Marla Shapiro completed medical school at McGill University and trained at the University of Toronto for her Masters of Health Science in Community Health and Epidemiology. She trained in Family Medicine and is certified by the Canadian College of Family Practice. She concluded her specialty training in Preventive Medicine and Public Health, receiving her Fellowship from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. She holds a Fellowship in Family Medicine and is a North American Menopause Society credentialed menopause specialist and is a full Professor at the University of Toronto.

Since 2000, Dr. Shapiro has been the Health and Medical Expert for Canada AM. In addition to her weekly appearances on Canada AM, Dr. Shapiro is seen regularly on CTV News Channel and as the medical consultant on CTV National News. In 2012, she hosted CTV News Channel’s Dr. Marla & Friends, a weekly series examining the most current and news-driven medical topics and stories. In addition, Dr. Shapiro has contributes topical, medical investigative documentaries for CTV’s W5, Canada’s most-watched documentary series. In 2003, she began hosting Balance: Television for Living Well, a refreshing daily health and lifestyle show seen across North American households.

In 2015, Dr. Shapiro was named a member of the Order of Canada, for contributions as a family physician and trusted source of health information. One of the country’s highest honours, the Order of Canada recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community, and service to the nation.

Dr. Shapiro has written a regular column for The Globe and Mail. She currently writes her weekly blog on the CTVNews.ca website. Dr. Shapiro is the Founding Editor of ParentsCanada Magazine.

Additionally, Dr. Shapiro is a member of several committees and advisory boards including the Board for the Canadian Foundation for Women and Health, Research Canada and The North American Menopause Society. She was on the original Board of The Canadian Partnership Against Cancer having stepped down after 6 years.

Dr. Shapiro was honoured at the 150th Bayer Anniversary among 22 leading scientists and researchers for her work in Women’s Health and contraception, and she was also named one of the Top 25 Most Powerful Women by Women of Influence Magazine in Canada. In 2011, The Israeli Cancer Research Fund honoured Dr. Shapiro at their Women of Action Luncheon for her personal and professional dedication to supporting innovative cancer research. She was the recipient of the 2010 Peter R. Newman Humanitarian Award in recognition of an exemplary commitment to the welfare of individuals or the community, at home or abroad. Dr. Shapiro was the recipient of the 2005 Media Award from the North American Menopause Society for her work in expanding the understanding of menopause. She won the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada/Canadian Foundation for Women’s Health Award for Excellence in Women’s Health Journalism in 2006 for her documentary, Run Your Own Race. The documentary was written, presented and co-produced by Dr. Shapiro, and won numerous industry awards including the New York Film Festival and the Columbus International Film and Video award.

Dr. Shapiro received an Award of Excellence from the College of Family Physicians of Canada for her lifelong commitment and dedication to family medicine in 2008. As well she was awarded the Excellence in Creative Professional Activity in 2008 by the University of Toronto, Department of Family and Community Medicine. 

Her national best-selling book, Life in the Balance: My Journey with Breast Cancer, was released in Fall 2006.

Speech Topics

Health & Wellness
Living Well Staying Healthy, Staying Confident

To Dr. Marla Shapiro—known north of the border as “Canada’s Doctor”—living well means keeping a healthy lifestyle in all aspects of our lives: at work, at home, and at play. In her keynote speeches and seminars, she provides invaluable advice on a diverse range of mental and physical health topics, consolidating her vast experience at the forefront of medicine into her four pillars of health. She’s able to speak confidently and compassionately on today’s most important issues—nutrition, menopause, osteoporosis, healthy aging, stress, obesity management, anxiety, depression, and how we communicate with our doctors. And she’s adept at tailoring her talks to a variety of audiences and interests. Ever the informative guide, Dr. Shapiro inspires people of all ages (and all capacities) to regain confidence, rediscover creativity, and stay motivated. 

Survivorship Life in the Balance
Canadians know Dr. Marla Shapiro best as a respected medical consultant for CTV News, the host of Balance: Television for Living Well and as a health columnist for The Globe and Mail. Admired for her intelligence and accomplishments, “Dr. Marla,” or “Canada’s Doctor,” seemed to have it all. But in 2004, she learned she had an invasive form of breast cancer. Like the more than 20,000 Canadian women diagnosed each year with the disease, her world changed forever. But unlike most women, her status as a physician meant she had an insider’s knowledge of the disease—and its treatments. In her talks, Dr. Shapiro gives an intimate, inspiring, and often surprising account of her battle with breast cancer (captured in her book, Life in the Balance), from the shock of diagnosis to multiple surgeries, chemotherapy to double mastectomy, followed by reconstructive surgery and recovery. She candidly recounts her struggle going from the woman who routinely delivered all the right answers to her patients and family, to the woman who discovered there were no right answers when it came to her own life-altering decisions. Her talks are infused with emotion, humour, and her unwavering passion to teach. Hers is a message for anyone whose life has been touched by cancer or knows someone who has, but has special significance for women living with this harrowing disease.