My journey into healthy eating didn’t begin with chronic illness, although I was less well than I realized. My journey began with body image and the quest for “thin”. I have tested out countless fad diets to see if they would be the answer for me, the easy way out. I’ve done calorie counting, point systems, low-fat, low-sugar, low-carb, low-food, tons of water, not much water, fasting, exercising, the works. I can’t say I’ve done it all but I definitely have a frequent flyer card from the weight loss section at the bookstore! I wasn’t really committed to anything though. I wanted to change, but not enough. After all, I was “basically healthy”. It wasn’t until I had a child that I got more serious about what it actually meant to be healthy.
I set about trying to learn what a healthy diet really was. I looked to all the places we should be able to look to for that information; the FDA, the USDA, the NIH and other government organizations in charge of discovering and disseminating nutrition information. I started buying whole grain and low-fat everything. My freezer was stocked with food packages covered in buzz words like “heart healthy” and “more vitamins and minerals” alongside pictures of food charmingly shaped like dinosaurs and characters my young son would be excited to gobble up. My pantry was stocked with 100-calorie packs and brightly colored “food” with all of my son’s favorite cartoons on the boxes. But nothing was changing. We didn’t feel any better and I certainly wasn’t any thinner.
I’m a bit of a science geek so I kept researching. One article led to another and one change led to another. I started to discover that there was a whole world of understanding about food and the impact it has on health that the USDA doesn’t seem to have a clue about. I started to switch out those processed foods for real foods, slowly. On a single parent’s budget with a single parent’s schedule it was a daunting prospect. I made one small change at time. One article led to another, which led me to finally discover my passion in life. I enrolled in, and graduated from, a formal program at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition to learn all I could, not only about the power of food, but how to help other people make the same discoveries. You see, it was impossible to learn all I was learning about how food shapes our health without also learning the shocking statistics about our health, nationally and globally, and how the explosion of chronic illness directly correlates to the shift away from real food. This program, combined with my B.A. in Psychology, has prepared me to teach others those truths.
I may never stop experimenting with the way my food affects my body, and I have not solved all of my “issues”, but the knowledge I have gained has empowered me. I feel in control of my health and the health of my family. I know what to do when we get sick (which happens very, very rarely now). I have a confidence in our immune systems that allows all the anxiety about epidemics and flu season, and the other worries of living like sardines to pass right by me. That empowerment is liberating and I want to share it with you. I have fallen in love with traditional foods and the ancient art of wild fermentation. One of my favorite things to teach is the benefit of fermented foods to your health. Don’t even bring it up if you don’t plan on staying a while!
Even though I felt “basically healthy” before, here is a partial list of the issues my family no longer deals with:
- “seasonal” allergies/chronic sinus congestion
- frequent headaches
- PMS, including mood swings, headaches, intense cramps and acne
- gas and bloating
- chronic back pain – this one is more complicated but I’ve finally gotten it under control, ask me how!
- frequent chest and bronchial infections
- seasonal “colds” and “flus”
- “weak teeth”, I have gotten cavities my whole life, despite good hygiene, but not since I learned how to eat
- afternoon crashes – my energy is stable and when I do crash, I know exactly why
- chronic stress
- my son’s diagnosis of asthma – completely refuted! No more medicines and nebulizer for us!
Since learning to eat real, whole foods, the way God intended, we have completely changed our lives. More importantly, I have changed my family tree. My grandchildren will be even healthier, and my great-grandchildren healthier still. Please join me in taking control of your health and changing your family tree. I invite you to learn more about my training and my approach to health coaching.
Curious about how all this can relate to your life? Schedule a free consultation with me!