I understand what it is like to know you are not taking the best care of your health that you could—and feeling powerless to change it. It took me way too many years to find the solution, but I am so thankful to have learned this for my own health and to have taken the opportunity to become certified in nutritional therapy to help people like you who are also searching for answers to better health. My journey is a bit of a long story, but if you would like to know more about how I got here, please read on!
The year 2015 brought devastating loss to our family. On July 2nd, my beautiful daughter-in-law, Naomi, died after aggressive treatment for stage 4 breast cancer failed. Her turn for the worse was quite sudden but knowing she was in the hospital again, I was checking in with my son frequently. I will never forget the call from my son on that morning 5 days before letting me know that I should come now, and the multiple texts on my 3-1/2 hour drive wondering if I was almost there because she might not make it until I got there. As I practically ran into her hospital room, her bed was surrounded by close family and friends. I heard Chris telling her I was here and then heard Naomi’s cries of “Mom, Mom” and then “I love you.” Her breathing was so labored and my tears fell as I grabbed her hands and told her how much I loved her too. The will to live is strong--although all treatment was suspended, Naomi survived the next 5 days. Her pain was beyond imaginable when conscious, so she was kept as sedated as possible.
This was such a period of loss because, in addition, both of my parents passed during this same period. My Mom passed in October of 2014 and my Dad in March of 2016 after a long goodbye with him suffering with Alzheimer’s disease. No, not easy and I so miss them—but it's so much more bearable considering the wonderful long and relatively healthy lives they lived. For my son, Chris, and my 3 & 6 year-old granddaughters, the grief of my own loss paled in comparison. Chris’ strength throughout Naomi’s illness was remarkable in so many ways. He was there for his beloved bride 24/7--so strong in the faith they both shared in a marriage that few are gifted to experience. On top of that, he was caring for the girls as Naomi was unable to do much. Naomi shared her heart with me on these things as we would talk, and that was the most unbearable part of dying--knowing her sweet girls would be without her. A pediatrician by profession, she loved children so much…and her own girls beyond measure. It grieved her heart to think of not being in their future.
Coming home after Naomi’s services, I felt paralyzed by grief…but I also felt something else emerging that I needed to answer to. My granddaughters no longer had a Mommy. A Grandma is no substitute for having a mother, but I did feel a strong obligation to be the healthiest and most present Grandma that I could be for them—and to honor the gift of life that I still have that was taken from Naomi too soon.
Regular exercise played no part in my life. My diet was a disaster. My energy level was at an all-time low. The stress of those last days with Naomi has had long-term effects—some very difficult to move past and others helped me make changes that have been positive. At the time, though, I ate whatever food was brought in by thoughtful family members and friends. My sugar addiction was in full force and I put on weight quickly. Most of my life, sugar has controlled me to varying degrees--and there is no point at which I don’t want more. Even when I cannot eat more because I’m so stuffed, my head still urges me to have more. Sugar is a very real addiction, as any who experience it know.
I knew I had to made changes. Naomi had asked me to be there for the girls as much as possible, and I wanted to support Chris in any way I could through this devastating time. To do that, I needed to learn how to take better care of me. I searched for answers on the internet for how to get control and came across something called a ketogenic diet. It was intriguing. After being a low-fat dieter for most of my adult life, this way of eating was a complete 180 change--very high fat, moderate protein & low carbohydrate.
On July 21, 2015, I started eating a ketogenic diet, and at the same time, I began working out with my trainer, Josh, 3 times a week—as I do to this day. My commitment was strong and I stuck to my plan, eventually losing 45 pounds and feeling better than I had for 20 years. This way of eating can be controversial, but I do believe it can be done in a healthy way and it does not have to be forever. It has been shown to be a very effective way of eating for many health conditions, such as epilepsy, some types of cancer and dementia. There are many paths to a healthier lifestyle, but because this one cut my cravings for carbs, it has been the path to food freedom for me.
SO...HOW DID I GET HERE?
I did say this is a long story, right?! Despite my issues with food, I had been interested in nutrition for many years. I had started taking a supplement from Youngevity in January of 2014 (Beyond Tangy Tangerine 2.0.) I still take it to this day--it gives me a sense of well-being and has markedly increased my immunity. When I don’t take it, I feel a bit sluggish, less focused and have increased appetite. I really wanted to know more about the whys of nutrition. Why does one product work and another with seemingly the same profile not seem to make any difference? Why does one person recover from an illness and another one doesn’t? Why do two people take the same supplements and have completely different results? Why do we have so many unhealthy people in our country. Why are so many chronic diseases climbing to astronomical proportions? Why, why, why….
The opportunity to get this in-depth knowledge and training came in August of 2015 when my friend, Jody, told me that she was considering enrollment in the 10-month Nutritional Therapy Practitioner (NTP) program. I was instantly interested and wanted to know more. She gave me the website and within 2 weeks, I was also enrolled and beginning what was to be an extremely intense 10 months of study—a combination of distance learning through recorded lectures, reading many, many books, attending classes in Los Angeles and then taking the examinations to achieve certification. Grueling…yet extremely rewarding! It was a great decision.
WORKING WITH ME
Nutritional therapy is an amazing thing! Your body is a very powerful self-healing organism, but very often—whether consciously or not—we put barriers between those automatic mechanisms that can hinder or even stop the healing process. As an NTP, I do not diagnose or treat diseases or conditions (see my official disclaimer here), but rather work with you using some pretty awesome assessment tools to find imbalances. When we know where those imbalances are, we use nutrient-rich foods, supplements (if needed) and we work on lifestyle changes that you are willing to implement to take you to more vibrant health and vitality. To check out my therapy package options, including a complimentary assessment, please click here.
I would love to help you toward a healthier future and hope to meet with you soon, in person or via Skype.
Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift
I have - life itself.