Meet Rachel

Meet Rachel

I’m a nutritarian (that means that I strive to eat a diet containing highly nutritious foods), a wine lover, and a yogini. I am most inspired by inspired people. I love to travel and explore – the two most magical places I have visited are Vietnam and Africa. I can only be happy when I follow my intuitions – I’ve tried the other way, it doesn’t work for me. I was born in New York and currently live in Brooklyn with my fiance.  I have dreams of leaving the city for fresher air and greener grass one day and I’m creating the best life for me where I am at the very moment.

I am board certified as a licensed Holistic Health and Nutritional Counselor by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners and received my education from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN). You might ask, why?

My interest and passion for food was never a choice for me.  It just was how it was.  Growing up with a family of foodies, always cooking and always eating, it was clear that for my family, everything we cooked was cooked with love (Cooking with Love is actually the name of my grandmothers cookbook!).  Fast food/soda/pizza was limited by my mom to once per week maximum and the junk food I would look forward to at my friend’s house were not an option in mine.

Fast forward a few years later, I was a bit of a chubby kid and as a 7th grader and can clearly recall eating cookies the size of my head which I purchased from the school cafeteria (it would take another page to share my feelings on that so I’ll leave it alone, for now).  I had my first trip to a nutritionist at the age of 12 where we planned out meals and simply moderated portions and I lost a few pounds.  Interesting…this actually works.

Through high school and college, I became very aware of the food I ate but, really, just became a very typical dieter buying the low-fat version (highly processed) cheese, reduced-fat crackers and rewarding myself with frozen yogurt and sugar-free hot fudge.  While I never was diagnosed with an eating disorder, like many young girls, I suffered a lot from disordered eating pulling from symptoms of both bulimia and anorexia. Food and emotion, like for many, had little separation.

Post college and not feeling too hot, I decided I wanted to see a nutritionist again. She instructed me to cut out sugars, starchy vegetables and control portions on protein and fruit.  Conversely, she encouraged the use of artificially sweetened and chemical-laden foods so as clients, we were still able to ‘satisfy the sweet tooth.’  That summer, I moved to Aspen and spent the summer hiking and following the diet given to me by my nutritionist.  At some point, I thought: I’m eating so many whole foods; I might as well cut out these artificial sweeteners and really “get healthy.”  It was just instinct. And so I did. No chemicals, no gluten, limited sugar intake and a morning mountain hike every day. That was by far the happiest, healthiest and most confident I ever felt.  I was happy in my skin and not only did I feel comfortable, I felt cozy.

For the past five years, I’ve worked as a publicist focusing on digital word of mouth, influencer marketing and social media strategy. While exciting, forever evolving and fresh, I know it is not my life’s work.  Feeling lost, I started having anxiety. I told my doctor at my annual checkup. She suggested some antidepressants.  Feeling this was a bit rash, I asked for alternatives. She said there were none.  My mind was truly blown.

Knowing something had to change; four months later I enrolled in school at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition.  For the first time, I felt like I was on the path right for me, for my values, my aspirations, my health, and my genuine happiness. From the day I enrolled, I took their commitment on as my own:

Our mission is to play a crucial role in improving health and happiness,

and through that process, create a ripple effect that transforms the world.

And here I am. I am someone who has struggled with finding a healthy balance and positive body image, who is baffled by the allowance of  food marketing that we are inundated with as consumers, who relates to food on an emotional level, and who is disappointed in how ineffectively our countries healthcare system currently functions. I am also someone who has the conviction and education to help others face these struggles and who is taking a stand to improve the health and happiness of everyone I encounter.

 

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