be good to yourself

My Training

I received my training as a Health Coach from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition's cutting-edge Health Coach Training Program. During my training, I studied over 100 dietary theories, practical lifestyle management techniques and innovative coaching methods with some of the world's top health and wellness experts.  My teachers included Dr. Andrew Weil, Director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine; Dr. Deepak Chopra, leader in the field of mind-body medicine; Dr. David Katz, Director of Yale University's Prevention Research Center; Dr. Walter Willett, Chair of Nutrition at Harvard University, Geneen Roth, bestselling author and expert on emotional eating, and many other leading researchers and nutrition authorities.  My education has equipped me with extensive knowledge of different dietary theories, so we can find what works best for YOU.  

I work with clients to help them make lifestyle changes that produce real and lasting results.

I've attended many seminars, lectures and conferences at the Miraval Resort in Tuscon, Arizona, as well as The Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY, where I met amazing people like Joe Cross, Abdi Assadi, Magen Banwart, Andrea Beaman, Marc David, Alexandra Jamieson, Victoria Moran and Brian Wansink.  Recently I met Dr. Mark Hyman in NYC for the promotion of his new book, The 10-Day Detox Diet Cookbook, along with Vani Hari a/k/a The Food Babe.  All such inspirational people!

To further my education, I also obtained a health coach certification from the Dr. Sears Wellness Institute by completing the L.E.A.N. Start program. This stands for Lifestyle, Exercise, Attitude and Nutrition. My training covered things like:

~ Which foods are more likely to lead to depression, obesity, cancer, learning disability, behavioral issues, etc.
~ How to customize workshops for different audiences
~ The Traffic Light Eating Continuum, a simple way to choose quality foods
~ Which nutritients are most important
~ How the body processes and utilizes both macronutrients and micronutrients
~ How to decipher the many parts of a packaged food label
~ Simple ways to understand and explain the complex world of fats
~ How much and what type of protein are important for growing children
~ The physiology behind movement and how it affects health
~ Sustainable strategies to develop a lifetime of health
~ Recipes that make nutrition easy, fun and affordable
~ Innovative ideas and activities that keep kids moving
~ Which foods are best for growing kids
~ Easy label reading techniques
~ Labeling loopholes that might be making family members sick
~ Which ingredients can affect behavior, concentration and energy levels
~ Pantry makeovers
~ Menu planning
In order to enhance my personal self-care and relaxation practice, as well as to pay it forward, I also completed Mission Be's Mindfulness Program and became certified as an educator.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness can be described as the practice of paying attention in the present moment, and doing it intentionally and with non-judgment. Mindfulness meditation practices refer to the deliberate acts of regulating attention through the observation of thoughts, emotions and body states.

Typical mindfulness activities include:

~ Mindful non-judgement awareness of breath, body, feelings, emotions and/or thoughts (in sitting meditation practice or throughout the day)
~ Mindful walking meditation
~ Mindful eating
~ Mindful body scan in a sitting or lying down position
~ Listening with non-judgment

More and more educators are exploring the use of contemplative or mindfulness-based approaches to teaching.  Through these approaches, they are learning to reduce stress (for teacher and student alike), enhance and improve classroom climates, and are helping students to calm their bodies and minds, focus their attention, and even open their hearts.

Many of our automatic reactions arise, habitually, from emotionally difficult experiences in our pasts.  When we take time to experience our thoughts and feelings with a present-centered, non-judgmental attitude, we begin to see such patterned behaviors for what they are and they naturally subside, rather than drive us to react in ways we may later regret.

Evidence suggests that regular mindful awareness practices changes how our body and brain respond to stress, possibly strengthing connections in the prefrontal cortex and reducing reactivity in our limbic system, supporting self-reflection and self-regulation.  These functions play a critical role in education.  To learn, a student must engage her prefrontal cortex to focus and monitor her attention and to inhibit implusive tendencies towards distraction.  Given this, many children come to school with nervous systems that are unprepared to learn.

With mindful education, children have experienced reduced stress, increased focus, improved emotion regulation, increased emotional intelligence, increased empathy and respect and increased resilience.

We can all benefit from being mindful.

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