Confessions of a Nutrition Nerd

WHAT SPARKED MY PASSION

AZ-Fam-Pic-5-26-14My enduring passion for nutrition was sparked in 1995, when at 41 years young my Dad was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes and a year later ended up on insulin. I went to a dietitian appointment with him and was empowered to learn how radically the food you ate could make or break blood sugar control.

At the same time, I had already witnessed my oldest brother injecting insulin for his Type 1 Diabetes, and now my Dad. I thought, “What the heck is going on here?”

Another brother struggled with his weight during childhood.  I would cry quietly, when I was alone, after seeing kids make fun of him for his weight. It just drove him to eat more.

I recall my Grandpa,  after having a massive heart attack,  showing me the long list of medication he was taking. And just to round out the family tree, a parent who tried every diet imaginable, only to gain the weight back and usually more. I thought to myself, there has to be a better way.

SAVING MY FAMILY

lisa-graduatesBy 2002, I graduated from Mount Mary University with a Bachelors of Science in Dietetics, graduating with Honors at the top of my class.

I was fiercely determined I could help people avoid these debilitating chronic illnesses, if I could simply educated then to eat better. It was really about saving lives. My fear of losing my loves ones motivated me. That fear was there for a reason.

My 55 year old workaholic father was abruptly clocked out with a massive heart attack, kidney failure and a side dish of diabetes complications, including nerve damage. In fact, I will never forget visiting him in the ICU of the hospital, with my cap and gown on, as he was unable to make one of the biggest days in my life -my college graduation. He was so proud yet hanging on to his life by a thread.

With this experience, the universe made me realize how short and precious life really is at the ripe age of 24. I, by the way, was the dietitian assigned to providing assessments and care plans to the very ICU my Dad was a patient in. Talk about bringing everything close to home! It was surreal.

In the years following, I went through the trauma of watching my Dad nearly die on several occasions, due to more heart issues, and held my Grandma G’s hand as she passed. Her death was preceded with the evil of cancer taking over her body with undeserved suffering.

Damn it! I wished I could do more.

 THE TURNING POINT

For many years, I was responsible for developing and leading weight management and diabetes programs for a large healthcare organization.  I followed the party-line hype and educated based on the conventional healthcare model.  I went down the bumpy road of low-fat and calorie counting.  Ugh!

With no real solutions, just more pills thrown at chronic diseases, I knew in my gut  “this isn’t fixing the real problem!”

In 2007,  I attended a conference on Integrative Mind-Body Medicine.  Bam! I found my peeps!  This conference and an integrative model of wellness was exactly what I needed to transition out the traditional nutrition stale mate I was in.

I then went on to do something I wanted to do for years. I attend the University of Bridgeport, and earned a Master’s of Science in Human Nutrition. After 10 years,  I was sooooo over being the circle trying to fit into the square. I fully embraced fixing the underlying problems with an integrative approach.  It was time to begin a new journey to make a difference in the lives of those I serve. 

 YOUR TASTY LIFE

Lisa GMy personal health journey has also been a colorful one, in a non-ideal way, that I’ve turned around and continue to turn around. There is no end is site to taking care of ME… that is “My Evolution”.

Following conventional advice I experienced elevated blood sugar, chronic constipation, bloating, sinus congestion, horrendous, I mean completely embarrassing acne, hypothyroidism, and to top it off adrenal fatigue as the stress mounted starting my own business and getting married.

To round it out, I have dairy and non-celiac gluten sensitivity, which lends to my supportive and relate-able style. I see, hear and understand that which many women are going through; as I too have experienced nagging problems.

THE FUTURE

I gave birth (it’s not been easy–some excruciating pushing required) to Your Tasty Life to spread the message on how doable it really can be to eat well and that wellness is about so much more than simply what’s on the end of your fork.

It’s food. It’s mood. It’s movement. It’s practical how-to guidance. It’s having a significant other that listens and buys you flowers O.K. No guarantees on that one!

Here’s the deal– You get to drive the bus. You get to decide the right choices for you, what roads to turn on or off. I’m here as your tour guide announcing pit stops to consider to make the ride more enjoyable.

I will share my personal lessons and experiences with you and keep it real and simple as I go. That’s how I roll. After 14 years, I still have that fiery commitment to reach and help as many people as I can.

I am committed to not only helping you achieve your best, but make traveling the road to healthier lifestyle land irresistibly fun.