Nourishing Herbal Nutritional Therapy
Nutritional Therapy: What is it & how does it work?
Nutrition: the process and scientific study of providing or obtaining the food necessary for health and growth.
Therapy: a remedy intended to relieve or heal a disorder.
Nutritional Therapy is a powerful evidence-based approach that maximizes a person's potential for vibrant health. This is made possible through the personalized formulation of nutritional and lifestyle protocols tailored to an individual's unique needs and requirements.
Rather than assessing each symptom or health concern of an individual on its own, Nutritional Therapy views the body as a whole, beautifully complex marriage of systems - and as such, a primary component of Nutritional Therapy is to delve deeply into the root causation of these concerning symptoms and assist in a person's healing by nourishing the root foundations of health.
Nutritional Therapy promotes the use and benefits of whole, unprocessed, nutrient-dense foods, traditional methods of food preparation, and the therapeutic actions of particular foods for specific health concerns.. Through the use of in-depth interviews, questionnaires, food journal assessments, functional evaluations and lab tests as necessary, a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner investigates and determines what a person's bio-individual needs are, and subsequently makes dietary, lifestyle, and qualtiy supplement recommendations that are specific and personalized for the individual (you).
Not sure if Nutritional Therapy is right for you? To this I say, why would it not be?
Nutritional Therapy is inherently suitable for everyone, no matter your age, sex, race, genetics or complex medical history. Nutritional Therapy can assist in alleviating pesky symptoms of dis-ease, supporting inherent bodily functions and improving your current health status by giving your body a refreshing boost. You have been provided with a beautiful body full of complexities for this life - so why not support yourself with the tools and nutrients necessary to live with vitality and vibrance?
Herbal Nutritional Therapy: Why do I recommend herbs?
Herb: any plant with leaves, seeds, or flowers used for flavoring, food, medicine, or perfume.
Herbal: a book or practice that describes herbs and their culinary and medicinal properties.
Herbal Nutritional Therapy is a powerful (and empowering) process of establishing communication between you and your body through whole food, nutrient-dense nourishment.
Herbs are incredible synergistic adjuncts as they tend to be more gentle and therapeutic to our bodies than a lot of synthesized medications. Don’t get me wrong, there is a time and a place for medication use – and I am no doctor – so herbals should not be misconstrued as alternatives to medications when medications are necessary for your health concerns. However, it is also equally important to recognize when this necessity exists and when it doesn’t. Therefore, understanding more about all of the amazing attributes of herbs can be an incredible way to support your personal health – and I have found them to be invaluable in my personal health as well the health of my friends, family and clients.
I began dabbling in herbal lore at the ripe young age of 12 years old after a childhood of thriving in outdoor environments. At the time, I was exploring my inner-witch and began obsessively reading and studying herbal folklore and spiritual aspects of the plant world. As I grew older and my interests evolved, I continued my explorations into the herbal realm, but with perhaps a less zealous focus as I did not realize my fascination with the herbal realm could manifest into a potential career path. Yet with my experience in the organic chemistry labs in college, I found myself invigorated to return to my dream of building my own “herbal alchemy practice” through herbal crafting – making homemade herb-infused oils, salves, tinctures, and balms – and understanding herbal uses for nourishment for both myself and family members. And I quickly discovered that herbs are POWERFUL and multi-faceted, and I knew enough to realize that I needed some guidance before diving in to their in-depth uses and applications.
I began my professional herbal training at the same time as my nutritional training, so my nutritional therapy philosophy and work has always melded the two modalities. As a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner I know the power of whole and nutrient-dense foods – that’s one of the foundations of our philosophy! And as such, I found that many people may be missing out on a whole brilliant world of nutrient-dense adjuncts if you’re lacking the knowledge of how to utilize herbal botanicals for your health, because let me tell you – we are hard pressed to find remedies that are more synergistically bioavailable to our human bodies than herbal botanicals!
Health Concerns Benefited by Herbal Nutritional Therapy:
Digestive Dysfunctions such as diarrhea, constipation, IBS, acid reflux/GERDs, bloating, gas, diverticulitis, leaky gut, food allergies/sensitivities, etc.
Autoimmune Conditions such as hypo/hyper thyroid leading to autoimmunity, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, type I diabetes, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, etc.
Blood Sugar Dysregulation such as insulin resistance, metabolic syndrome, type II diabetes, excessive stress, sugar cravings, etc.
Hormonal Imbalances such as PCOS, PMS, thyroid issues, infertility, menopause, endometriosis, cystitis, decreased libido, mood swings, irregular menses, etc.
Mental Health Issues such as depression, anxiety, fatigue, ADD, ADHD, autism, eating disorders, dementia, mood disorders, inability to focus, brain fog, etc.
Weight Imbalances such as inability to gain/lose weight for happy body weight balancing, diabetes, sugar cravings, blood sugar imbalances, etc.
Cardiovascular Health Issues such as high blood pressure, elevated and/or imbalanced cholesterol, elevated triglycerides, metabolic syndrome, etc.
Skin Conditions such as eczema, acne, rosacea, psoriasis, dry/peeling skin, hives, dandruff, dermatographic uriticaria, etc.=
In a Nutshell: My Herbal Nutrition Philosophy
I don’t believe in a one-size- fits-all diet. I believe in the concept of bio-individuality – meaning each person is individually unique with unique responses and needs. What works for me might not work for you, and something entirely different might work for your spouse, friend or colleague. That’s why most diets will work for some people and not for others. I don’t believe in counting calories, grams, ounces, etc. It’s not something I’d be willing to do myself, and I’d never ask clients to do things that I wouldn’t do. Additionally, your health cannot solely be determined on a mere calories-in equals calories-out mentality. I believe in quality over quantity, and in the case of food, my focus is always on quality.
I believe that our bodies never lie and never deceive us. If your body is asking for something (through a craving, through a health complaint, through all the different ways our bodies communicate to us), then our job together is to figure out what your body is asking for and learn how to respond appropriately. This is not to say that this signaling and communication can't get confusing, but as your NTP one of my jobs is to sort out this confusion and re-establish trust in this communication between you and your body. While I don’t believe that one diet works for everyone, I do believe that we need to eat nutrient dense, whole foods that have been properly-prepared. By that I mean we need to be eating real food, as close to the form it was originally grown/raised in, and be preparing our food in a way that preserves or even enhances the nutritional value of the food. So many of the ways we prepare food (or food is prepared for us) kills or diminishes the nutrients within the food. I’m not saying you should eat only raw food, but I do believe that we can prepare foods in such a way as to make the absolute most of it. And the nice part of this is that most of the time this preparation is fast and quite simple.
In your individualized consultations, we will look at how your body is using the food you’re eating. You can be eating the most perfect, pristine diet out there, but if you’re not digesting it properly or absorbing it fully, then you’ll necessarily need to eat more to get the same nutritional value. We will also look at the bigger context of your life and how that affects what, how, and when you eat. You are obviously much more than what you eat and that can have a very big impact on how your body deals with your food. If you’re eating while you’re really stressed, your body is going to use that food very differently than if you’re eating in a nice, calm, relaxed state. So we’ll take these additional components into account as well when diving into your nutritional needs.
If your protocol requires the limitation or elimination of certain foods for a time, you will be provided with viable alternatives so your nutritional needs will be optimally maintained. If necessary, quality supplementation with vitamins, herbs, and minerals may be recommended to help alleviate symptoms and promote the optimization of your nutritional status. Keep this in mind, but my go-to recommendations will always be nourishing and therapeutic foods and culinary herbs.
It must be noted that as a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, I am not a substitute for your Primary Care Physician and I therefore do not diagnose or treat illness and disease - rather, I counsel and coach individuals through nutritional and lifestyle recommendations that will be foundationally supportive to their health and well-being. The support I offer complements conventional medicine and I'll often work in conjunction with your medical provider as warranted by your therapeutic needs and protocol.
What to Expect: Herbal Nutrition Assessment
Length of session: 120 minutes
Your first session is the Initial Interview Assessment: this is an in-depth 120 minute consultation where we get to know each other as we dive deeply into your primary health concerns, medical and nutritional histories, and current dietary patterns. Your personal needs, symptoms and goals for your nutritional work will be discussed and a bio-individually appropriate protocol will be created based on this information. I will work with you to create a protocol plan that is nourishing, enjoyable, practical, balanced, and most importantly sustainable.
Your session includes:
60 minute in-depth interview of your health history, primary concerns, and dietary patterns
30 minutes of physical assessment to rule-out health concerns requiring physician referral
30 minutes of recommendations review of initial action steps
7 day sample meal plan as applicable for your health concerns
Applicable resources & educational materials as needed
*This is the first session you will have when you choose to work with me for individual consultations. For more information on my service offerings, please visit my Individual Nutritive Programs page.
What to Expect: Functional Clinical Assessment (FCA)
Length of assessment: 30-90 minutes
Your session may include a Functional Evaluation: this is a non-invasive and gentle, hands-on assessment of your potential nutrient needs and areas of weakness that are in need of support. This evaluation provides the knowledge to optimize your Nutritive Protocol with specific nutrient and/or herbal supports as indicated by the assessment. Your Nutritive Protocol will be adjusted and reviewed as your evaluation warrants.
*please wear comfortable and loose clothing as you will be asked to sit, stand, lay down, etc. and we want you to be comfortable and unencumbered by adornments or bulky attire.
Your session includes:
Gentle, hands-on assessments of your body's organs and systems to determine areas of imbalance.
Lingual-Neural Testing of nutrient and herbal supports to determine the specifics of your body's needs.
Review of your Nutritive Protocol and recommendations.
Applicable resources and educational materials as needed.