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REAL FOOD EDUCATION:

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It all started with the desire to educate...

I was in college about to earn my teaching credential when I became very ill. I cancelled my spring break plans and stayed at home in bed instead. It turned out to be strep throat, and boy, did it knock me out. I was put on several rounds of antibiotics, not knowing that I was resistant to them and only complicating my illness. I was eventually able to go back to "normal", but nothing was ever quite the same.

 

Soon after recovering from my strep infection, I was diagnosed with a host of other problems that I had never experienced before, and some I had never even heard of. These included things such as PCOS, Celiac disease, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, IBS, familial hypercholesterolemia, chronic migraine, brain fog and mood disorders. Doctors told me that this would be my new normal. But I was only in my mid-20s and I did not want to accept this as my fate. So I turned to food as medicine to heal myself. Doctors told me that diet and lifestyle modifications wouldn't really make a difference, but they were wrong. They kept trying to get me on medications, but I refused. Instinctually, I knew that proper nutrition was the answer.

Now, maybe diet and lifestyle modifications didn't solve all of my problems, but they sure made them easier to deal with. So I vowed to learn as much as I could about nutrition. I taught myself a lot, and did a lot of research to discover what the one right human diet was. Hint: it's different for everyone. At first I tried a vegan diet. That only made things worse for me. Then I tried a Paleo diet, and I started to feel a lot better. I did a few rounds of Whole30, and then a few months of an autoimmune protocol approach. Now I pretty much eat whatever makes me feel good, and I avoid things that my body tells me are no good.

One summer, early on in my teaching career, I was working as a reading intervention coach. I was able to work with a diverse group of kids of all grade-school ages with various struggles. Some of these kids were far behind grade-level in reading because of their inability to focus. One morning I was working with a nine-year-old boy who could not stay in his chair. He crawled under the table, ran around the room, and had this belief that he would never be able to read at the same level as his peers. I was getting fed up with his behavior. So in my nicest teacher voice, I asked him to sit in his chair, I looked him straight in the eyes and I asked him what he had eaten for breakfast that morning. His answer of Coca-Cola and M&M's shocked me. That's not breakfast! Who feeds their kid that? It was then that I realized that maybe kids diagnosed with ADHD act the way they do because of what they're fed, and it's not truly ADHD. I knew I was onto something.

I was blessed to have a young boy with autism in my class the following school year. One day his mom came to me to inform me that she was going to try some diet interventions with him to see if she could improve his behavior. She removed gluten, casein, food dye, and processed junk from his diet. This boy was non-verbal and rarely made eye contact. But after only three weeks of these diet interventions, he was talking and making eye contact like he had never done before. To say I was intrigued by this was an understatement. It was then that I decided that I needed to educate others about how diet and lifestyle modifications could improve cognition, behavior, and overall health both inside and outside of the classroom.

So in the spring of 2011, I enrolled in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition's health coaching program. Through this program, I learned over 100 dietary theories, and learned some skills on how to work with students to improve learning and cognitive performance beyond the four walls of a classroom. While the program was great, it left me wanting more. So I eventually wound up becoming a functional nutritional therapy practitioner through the Nutritional Therapy Association as well.

I quietly started Real Food Education in the summer of 2017 in the hopes of working with individuals and families to assist them in designing personalized nutrition and lifestyle plans to heal their guts and improve cognitive performance so they can get to the root cause of dysfunction and restore wellness within themselves. I envision a world where every man, woman and child is living their best life because they embrace food as medicine and their health as their number one priority. I provide in-person services in the Boise, Idaho area as well as virtually online. When I'm not working with clients, you'll find me hiking the trails of Idaho, cuddled up with a cat and a good book, and of course in the classroom where I still work with students with mild to moderate learning disabilities. My work here is just getting started, and I have a long way to go. Thanks for stopping by and joining me on this journey.

It's time we take back our health with real food.

"The food you eat can either be the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison."

- Ann Wigmore

Stephanie (noun):

Tea drinking, book reading, cat cuddling, nature loving, kid teaching, real food eating human from Boise, Idaho.

Fun facts about me...

Hometown: Palos Verdes, California

Current City: Boise, Idaho

Zodiac Sign: Capricorn

Eye Color: Hazel

Spirit Animal: Ocelot

Favorite Season: Autumn

Cafe Order: Green tea (not matcha) or Americano w/ room

First Car: '94 Pontiac Grand Am

First Job: Concessions sales at Regal Cinemas

Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw

Enneagram: 9w1

You can learn more about  my education by clicking HERE.

on  instagram  @realfoodeducation