Hello! Welcome to my page!

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health coach santee ca
Thank you for taking the time to get to know me. When deciding who you will trust with your personal goals and overall wellness, it is important to find the right fit. We will be discussing life changing topics and I want you to be comfortable with who I am and understand how I work. If you are considering hiring me, please take a few minutes to read about the foundation from which I practice.

Who I am and what I offer.
I am a licensed psychotherapist and behavioral coach. That means I went to school to get a Bachelor’s Degree, a Master’s Degree and Doctoral Degree in psychology and marriage and family therapy. I completed 3000 hours of clinical experience, passed two licensing exams, and have to complete 36 units of continuing education every two years to maintain my license. I hold my license in CA where we have some of the highest standards of education and licensing requirements in the nation. In addition, I have studied health and nutrition in depth. I am a certified health & wellness coach and have earned a certificate as a Level One Nutrition Advisor from Sanoviv Functional Medical Institute. Last, but definitely not least, I am honored to be a Whole30 Certified Coach.
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whole30 health coach santee ca
I specialize in integrative wellness as a foundation for an optimized life. This means that I view the mind, body, spirit and behaviors as one. You cannot treat just one area of a person. Attempting to change your habits without an understanding of why you do the behaviors in the first place, is less effective, than when you have insight into your behaviors; however, understanding why you do something isn’t enough to change your behavior. Attempting any goal without a healthy foundation will inhibit you from reaching your full potential, as you will be approaching change with a body that is only partially functioning. I practice this integrative approach by using the knowledge and skills I have gained as a psychotherapist, tools I have learned as a behavioral coach, and the vast knowledge I have gained in health and nutrition to give you foundation to build upon. I see myself as your ground zero for change. When you finish with my coaching package (you can read more about what package is the best fit for you on the website) you will be ready to approach your goals with a clear mind and healthy body! Increasing your chance of long-term and sustainable success.

Here are a few critical facts you may not be aware of, that could be holding you back from feeling happy and being fulfilled. Did you know that a majority of our serotonin, the feel good neurotransmitter required for optimal mood regulation and mental health, is stored in our gut? Low serotonin levels have been linked to depression. Serotonin is an important chemical and neurotransmitter in the human body and is believed to help regulate mood, social behavior, appetite, digestion, sleep, memory, sexual desire and function. Tryptophan deficiency can lead to lower serotonin levels. Did you know that some GMO’s (genetically modified food) deplete tryptophan from the food source?  Lack of tryptophan may result in low serotonin levels, increasing your odds of having a mood disorder, such as anxiety or depression. I know that was a mouthful, but this is just one piece of critical information that anyone attempting to make any changes to their health needs to be aware of!
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If you have never been educated on this you are not alone. I did not know any of this until my first son was born and I experienced debilitating postpartum anxiety and mild depression. You can read more about my journey through 3 rounds of postpartum anxiety and depression in my blog. I share this information because it was this eye opening experience about how food, mood and cognition are interconnected. I struggled with frustration and disappointment towards my profession for sometime, as I realized that depression, anxiety, and mental health in general, may be improved through high quality supplements like Omega 3’s and Vitamin D as well as nutritional change and improving gut-health.

I had spent years working with clients without discussing any of this critical information. I was amazed to learn how adding high quality protein to children's meals can decrease ADHD symptoms. In all of my years of education and hundreds of classes, I had never been educated on the necessity of interconnecting  physical health and mental health when creating a treatment protocol. I began researching how much education traditional western medical doctors receive in health and nutrition. It is shockingly low. I have worked since 2002 with hundreds of clients from many different backgrounds, ages, and professions.

One thing many of my client’s had in common is that they lacked a healthy foundation and knowledge about how health was negatively affecting their personal lives. They were caught in a stress response cycle that was being made worse by poor food choices and lack of alternative coping options, such as mindfulness. This inhibited them from reaching their full potential and adequately meeting their goals. Although lifestyle change in an area of awareness has recently been on the rise, there are very few providers who address goals and mental health symptoms by incorporating physical health and wellness interventions. So I began my journey of slowly transitioning from a general mental health practice to an integrative practice.  
Through our work together I can offer you guidance in whole food nutrition and education on high quality research based nutritional supplements to accelerate optimal health & wellness. I used the latest tools in habit and behavior change with a strength based positive approach to your obstacles. I offer group and individual services to best serve your unique needs and income availability. Please check the tabs to determine if Whole30, or a 5 or 28 day Sugar Buster program is right for you. We will identify your goals together and create an action plan to finally achieve the life you have been waiting to live. My objective is to give you a guided format on how to achieve a foundation rooted in a healthy lifestyle.

I also offer one-on-one regular ongoing coaching sessions. However, I require all of my clients first complete one of my nutrition and wellness programs mentioned above. I offer a lot of education and tools in these programs and many of my clients find they no longer need long term, one-on-one work, as they see things is from a different angel and by improving their health notice subsequent changes in other areas of their life.

However, if you find you still have goals you would like to work on after your wellness program, I am more than happy support you with continued coaching and address a wide variety of concerns from personal, familial, financial, career and relationship goals. We will identify your needs together and create an action plan that is unique to you.

Common Questions.

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These are a few questions I am commonly asked about how coaching differs from traditional therapy. This is a very broad question to answer, but in simplest terms, therapy is best for people who want to address the emotional and psychological roots of their issues, heal from past traumas, and want to take the time to process these areas with consistent and on-going support. Although there are therapists who incorporate the mind, body, and spirit of the individual into treatment, it is most common for providers to primarily treat the psyche of the individual. Often times in therapy a mental health diagnosis is applied if appropriate and treatment is done through this diagnostic lens. As a traditional mental health therapist for many years, mental health treatment is an honorable and effective protocol for the right situation.

Coaching focuses on personal growth, goal attainment and behavioral change. Coaching may be best for people who wish to develop practical skills, set goals and define steps to achieve them, and identify and address issues that are interfering with optimized joy and health. Although coaching can help to address emotional issues, coaching is not well-suited to discovering or treating the emotional roots of behavior issues. If you are not sure if therapy or coaching is the best fit for you, please contact me for a complimentary 15 minute discussion. If needed, I can refer you to the support that you may need.

If you are a provider and would like to see how my work can augment your medical or mental health treatment with your clients, please visit the provider link on this site. I love collaborating with other professionals to enhance our client’s experience.

Benefits of a Coach.

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whole30 certified coach san diego, ca
Coaching can be a more cost effective and accessible way to attempt wellness before deciding if traditional mental health therapy is right for you.

Coaching can work as a supplement to enhance your current therapeutic work. As you work on your foundation of wellness with me it will assist you in being more available and capable of fully benefiting form your therapeutic work and relationship with your primary therapist.

My coaching is geared to be short-term and is much more cost effective than traditional therapy.  My session rates are approximately half of my psychotherapy hourly rate.

Coaching does not require the reporting of your enrollment or progress to your insurance company. Your participation can be kept private as there are no required records or notes that I have to keep by law. I do however respect the privacy of my clients.

My coaching does not fall under HIPPA laws. I offer on-line and in person coaching and groups allowing me to be flexible with hours and location of service. Coaching can be done via text / email/ or FaceTime.

By improving your baseline of health and subsequently improving your microbiome (often referred to as the second brain) you will get a true picture of health and will better be able to see if medication still needed to address your symptoms.

*Always talk with your doctor first before making any decisions about medication. I am available to discuss any of my protocols with your doctor with your written permission.

**If you have any thoughts of self-harm or harm to others call 911 or go to your emergency room. Do not attempt coaching first.

***Although research shows that food and nutrition can be a first line defense in addressing mental health symptoms; it may not be enough to control your symptoms completely and you should always consult a doctor before starting or stopping any medication. You should not feel negative about taking medication as I believe it takes bravery and commitment to address mental health symptoms and have witnessed many people benefit from starting a psychotropic medication.

In Closing

One last thing, if you are still with me, you can see more about how I incorporate what I teach into my own life as you scroll through my website and blog. I am an active Whole30 enthusiast and use it as my foundation of wellness for my family of 5. I have used Usana pharmaceutical grade supplements to heal my body from birthing and nursing 3 children over the course of 7  consecutive plus years. I am very active and love life to the fullest. In other words, I practice what I preach.
In health and happiness,
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