I started cooking because I love feeding people and using food as the mechanism for how I take care of my loved ones. I also realized I had a talent for creating health-supportive meals that are still delicious and satisfying. Early on, I knew that I wanted to work with nutrient dense, healing foods. So I attended the Natural Gourmet Culinary Institute in New York City, a culinary school with a very strong “food as medicine” focus. My passion to understand food and health eventually led me obstain nutrition certifications from schools like the Nutritional Therapy Association, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and the Food Therapy course taught by AnneMarie Colbin herself, the founder of my culinary school.
Food can be Medicine
I have seen the power food can have over our health, either to aid in healing or to further create disease. As a holistic chef, cooking for clients for over 12 years, I have experience working with food allergies, special diets, and diseases like cancer, heart disease, and autoimmune conditions. I am so proud to have added being a certified Wahls health practitioner to my culinary toolkit as well.
All of my experience, watching the effect food has on our health naturally led me to find Dr. Terry Wahls and The Wahls Protocol. More and more of my friends and family had something going wrong with their bodies that suggested the beginnings of an autoimmune condition. Why was this happening to them? I had been following Dr. Wahls for many years, and I was so excited when she created the Wahls Protocol Health Practitioner Certification program.
The Wahls Protocol is a functional medicine approach to treating multiple sclerosis as well as other autoimmune conditions. I have heard people going through cancer treatments talk about how much faster they got over the effects of chemo by following the Protocol. This protocol is not just for people with MS, many other people benefit from adapting to this way of eating. I have always been greatly impressed by the power of the combination of lifestyle strategies, nutrition, movement, and alternative therapies that are put into place to support the changes in diet. This is not just about changing your plate of food.
EATING THE PROTOCOL MYSELF
I decided to test this on myself, someone with no known diseases. I wanted to see how I felt following the 9 cups rule of sulfur, colors, and greens. We all know we should eat more vegetables and less junk anyway. I also wanted to understand just what it took to cook this Protocol every day. A recent food allergy test showed I was reacting to eggs, so I cut that out of my daily breakfast, and going egg-free fits right into the Protocol anyway.
This bowl is what my breakfasts started looking like every day. I made a BIG batch of colorful veggies like red cabbage, onions, brussels, mushrooms, roasted potatoes, and ground beef or turkey. Sometimes I would top it with bacon. If you are an eggs and pancakes kind of person, then this might seem really weird to have for breakfast, but I LOVED IT! It helped to add the potatoes and bacon, which made it feel more like breakfast. I have frozen this meal and brought it with me to friends’ houses and now they make something similar for themselves too.
Check out the Wahls inspired Liver and Mushroom Pate’ Recipe I created for one of my clients. I was so impressed with how this turned out. I even tried adding some of the pate’ to my meatloaf and meatballs with great success.
HOW THE PROTOCOL AFFECTS MY WORK
I am still a full-time Chef and I specialize in cooking for people with food allergies and on medically necessary diets. Now I also cook for people following the Wahls Protocol. The science-backed and real-life tested principles of the Protocol informs all of my cooking. I always add more color into the dishes I prepare. I use her dietary protocols for my clients with food allergies and I know that I am helping them to heal.
Her protocol WORKS. I have used it on myself, although I have no autoimmune problems, but I ALWAYS FEEL BETTER when I eat this way.
Through this training and membership in this community, I am seeing every day the real evidence of people following her protocol and healing themselves, of reversing their symptoms, of getting up and walking again. This kind of change is evident in the MS community, but also for people with other autoimmune diseases too like Lupus, Lyme, etc.
I know she is the scientist and doctor of the future for understanding how food IS our health.
IF YOU WANT TO BE A CERTIFIED WAHLS HEALTH PRACTITIONER
The requirement to be a certified Wahls Health Practitioner when I got certified was to have a prior nutrition certification from a group like the NTA. Then we had to attend the The Wahls Protocol Seminar in Iowa (pre-covid). I already believed in what Dr Wahls was doing, and attending the Seminar allowed me to hear firsthand stories from all the attendees how their lives had been transformed. You can now attend the Seminar virtually instead of traveling, and still meet the amazing community of people living this lifestyle. You will be connected to other health professionals doing the same work as you, who have the same goals and beliefs in working with food and nutrition.
As a health practitioner, you will have access to monthly Q&A calls with Dr. Wahls and other certified professionals providing an opportunity to learn directly from her and from each other. You will also be listed on her health professionals directory on her website.
Hear from Dr. Wahls herself why she needs a network of certified health professionals to help her spread her work.