Q. What does losing your hair have to do with you becoming a Certified Health Coach?
In March 2005, I finally paid attention to my hairdresser and scheduled an appointment with a dermatologist to see why my hair was falling out. Diagnosed with Alopecia, an autoimmune condition that attacks the hair follicles and causes hair loss, I began bookmarking online wig websites and frantically tearing advertisements out of magazines. Given that I was desperate to have a regrowth of my thick head of hair, you might think I would’ve gladly accepted the option to have cortisone injected into my scalp to promote hair loss (not guaranteed to work). Instead, I declined and began reading everything I could get my hands on, searching for a more natural, holistic cure. I stumbled upon Dr. Ron Hoggan’s book, Dangerous Grains, and immediately insisted that my internist run a blood test. Six scary and frustrating months after the Alopecia diagnosis, I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease.
After 7+ years of living a 100% compliant gluten free life, I decided to do everything I could to help others with gluten-related issues. I began teaching gluten free cooking and baking classes and was thrilled to know that I could make a difference in the lives of my students who ranged in age from toddlers to 85 year olds. A teacher with 2 degrees (Bachelors in Music Education and Masters in Early Childhood Education), I decided to formalize my teaching and get a degree as a Holistic Health Coach from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City. In addition, I have a certification in TCM (Transformational Coaching Method) which allows me to utilize a technique that empowers people to create lasting positive change without effort or the need to remember to do anything differently. Health coaching is, without a doubt, one of the most rewarding careers I could ever imagine having.
Q. Can you help people who don’t have Celiac Disease but are Gluten Intolerant or Gluten Sensitive?
Yes, absolutely, unequivocally. There is a whole spectrum of gluten intolerant or gluten sensitive people who most definitely benefit from following a gluten free diet. I believe I am here to help anyone ready to make peace with going gluten free!
Q. What makes you different from other health coaches?
My story is unique though anyone with gluten issues (Celiac or otherwise) can relate to a lifetime full of bloat, headaches, hairloss, arthritis, dental issues, thyroid problems, and the list goes on and on. Along the way, I struggled enormously with a negative body image, wild mood swings, daily leg cramps and an intense hunger that never ceased, not to mention a candida diagnosis, osteopenia and osteoporosis. I believe that my experience with these challenges makes me a better health coach, as I’ve walked in many of your shoes. I can speak with certainty when I say that I can take you from where you are now to a place that empowers you to take charge of your health in a way that perhaps you’ve never done before. As a teacher with over 37 years of teaching experience, I am passionate about helping people, and my experience being completely 100% gluten free is guaranteed to help you find your own path to wellness. With a combination of gentle non-judgement and tough love health coach, I can help you learn to navigate the world of gluten free as well as unblock yourself so that you can begin your healing journey.
Q. Who are your clients?
I partner with people who are gluten free and teach them the tools that enable them to skip right past the overwhelm and frustration of “What CAN I eat?” so that they can enthusiastically embrace and fall in love with the foods they CAN eat.
If you meet any of the following criteria, then you’re ready to be my client…
• diagnosed with Celiac or you’re Gluten Intolerant or Gluten Sensitive and overwhelmed and frustrated with how to make gluten free work
• though you’re not gluten free nor haven’t been formally diagnosed with any gluten issues, you can tell at least anecdotally that it’s a problem AND have no clue how to make gluten free work
• have been told that you have one or more inflammatory conditions including thyroid disease, alopecia, arthritis, sjogren’s syndrome, raynaud’s disease, diabetes, asthma, psoriasis, vitiligo, lupus and more
• you hate cooking but know you need to find a way to prepare gluten free food that is quick, easy and delicious
• not spending countless hours in the kitchen is high on your priority list and while you’re at it, you’d really love to learn how to save money in the process
• you want to learn how to convert your favorite recipes to be gluten free
• you’re gluten free (or want to be) and traveling poses a HUGE challenge
• you want to eat bread again but the gluten free bread you’ve bought in the store is ridiculously expensive and tastes like nothing you’d want to eat regularly but you don’t want to buy and store 65 different gluten free flours in your pantry
• bloat is your middle name
• you’ve been following a gluten free diet and need a strategy for dealing with well-meaning family members, friends, and work colleagues who sabotage you with “just take one little bite” comments
• your mood swings are off the charts
• you can’t figure out why you’re constantly so tired
• you’re ready to make permanent changes and invite wellness into your life
Q. What kind of clients do you work with?
I work with clients who are ready to focus their energy and attention on finding delicious success with eating gluten free for themselves and/or anyone in their family.
I work with clients who believe that working with an accountability coach will give them the confidence and inspiration to make these changes.
I work with clients who are ready to commit to being gluten free so that they can kickstart their health to a place of wellness.
I work with clients who want to follow a gluten free diet that also focuses on incorporating more plant-based whole foods into their diet.
I work with clients who’ve had a lifetime of emotional issues with food and want to learn how to change their habits to achieve an overall experience of well-being.
Q. What kind of person wouldn’t be an ideal client for you?
If you’re not willing to take the time to achieve your gluten free goals but are looking for overnight success with transitioning to a gluten free diet, this is NOT the program for you.
If you’re the kind of person that makes excuse after excuse (I have a party this weekend, the holidays are coming, the dog ate my homework, I have to take care of my 85 year old aunt etc.) for why you can’t do something, even if it will catapult you to amazing health, this is NOT the program for you.
If you want to stay the path you’ve been on and are unwilling to invest in your own gluten free success, this is NOT the program for you.
Q. What exactly is the Love Yourself Gluten Free Method?
It’s a simple 6 Step Discovery program that created by Ellen Allard, the Gluten Free Diva, to get yourself up and rolling with going gluten free. Once you master these 6 easy steps, you’ll feel more relaxed and confident to continue your journey to a healthy, gluten free life.
The Love Yourself Gluten Free Method™ will enable you to:
1. Choose the right foods for optimal gluten free health
2. Create and maintain a safe gluten free pantry
3. Have a repertoire of easy and delicious gluten free recipes for every day meals
4. Learn how to eat safely while on the road or traveling by airplane including navigating restaurants
5. Feel comfortable and confident when explaining your need to stay gluten free to family and friends
6. Learn how to save time and money by adopting some advanced ninja meal planning techniques
Q. How do you know that your method works?
The tips, techniques and tools that I share are nothing short of transformational and have contributed significantly to my rockin’ good health. Others have followed my method with great success and I believe that you will achieve the same level of satisfaction that I’ve undergone since October 2005, not to mention how amazing you’ll feel! If you work the program, it’ll work for you, for sure!
Q. What are some of the results I can expect?
The results you experience will very much depend on your own bio-individuality blueprint. It will also depend on how compliant you are and where you are in terms of the amount of healing you need to do. Some of the possible results will include eating and NOT feeling the bloat (some might refer to this as losing your belly bloat), tasting food in a new way, feeling an amazing boost of energy, elimination of headaches and body aches, sleeping more peacefully, kickstarting your weight loss (if that’s a goal) and feeling sexier and more alive in your body. Sounds good, don’t you think?
Q. When would I begin to notice changes?
Again, each person is unique and will respond accordingly. Some of it depends on the amount of healing that you must undergo, some of it depends on how compliant you are. Depending on how flattened your villi are (that’s GI medical talk for one of the symptoms of Celiac Disease) or how crummy you feel, your intestines will begin healing immediately, as soon as gluten is removed from the diet, therefore you could feel better quickly.
Q. Should I go gluten free without a doctor’s approval?
Anyone can try going gluten free at any time. However, if you’ve struggled with symptoms common to people who have Celiac or Gluten Intolerance or Gluten Sensitivity and haven’t been seen by a doctor for it, you might want to go that route first. There’s more to it than can be covered here, but suffice to say that if your doctor wants you to be tested for gluten, if you go gluten free before that happens, your improvement could very well influence the test results and give you a false positive. If you’ve already been gluten free, chances are you’ll have to undergo a gluten challenge before you are tested. This requires you to go back to eating gluten for a period of time, usually several months.
Q. How can I be sure that this will work?
You can’t. There’s no absolute guarantee with anything. But if your health has been poor, if you are ready for a change, if you are absolutely willing to focus all of your energy towards creating a healthy life, with support and accountability from me, you are likely to find the gluten free foods that will love you back. Make the commitment, invest in yourself, you’re worth it!
Q. How can I hire you to be my health coach when I don’t live near you?
Though my office is in Central Massachusetts, all of my health coaching is done via phone. This allows me to work with clients who live not only in the US, but abroad as well. This method of coaching is extremely effective and allows me to develop nurturing and close relationships with clients, though I’ve never met some of them.
Q. What forms of payment do you take?
I only accept credit cards as it allows my practice to run most smoothly. Your payment can be made either monthly or in full. Please note that full paying clients benefit by receiving a bookkeeping discount for doing so.
Q. I’m ready to invest in myself, totally. Now what?
Congratulations! By taking this first step, you’ve begun the process of taking care of YOU. I look forward to partnering with you in this endeavor.
First things first: Schedule your complimentary 20 minute “Gluten Free Diva Strategy Session” during which time we’ll address your questions and any concerns you might have. Before the end of the call, I will give you a challenge to undertake, as it’s important for both of us be certain that your decision to work with me works for both of us.
Q. How can I familiarize myself with your work and style of coaching before I register for one of your programs?
By participating in my complimentary “Gluten Free Diva Strategy Session”, you’ll have a chance to experience some of my coaching style and we can talk about whether I can help you achieve your goals.
As well, you can get to know me by signing up for my “Top Secret 7 Gluten Free Bread Recipes” at which time you’ll be automatically gifted a subscription to my free Love Yourself Gluten Free bimonthly email newsletter. Subscribe here.
Q. I’m already incredibly busy and as a result, can’t imagine how I’ll have time to learn how to be gluten free?
Great question! Every client I work with has similar issues, which I can totally relate to! Been there, done that.
Let’s work on that together. We’ll figure out where you are most stressed when it comes to time and what you can do to make this a non-issue so that you can begin to work towards making your health a priority.
In terms of the amount of time you’ll need to devote to our work together, you can expect to have a weekly 30 – 60 minute coaching session (depending on the program), a dedicated amount of time for meal-planning each week (probably about 20 – 30 minutes), time to go food shopping (which you have to do anyway, right?!?), and time in the kitchen prepping and/or cooking your meals (about 2 hours).
While some of this might be new for you, after awhile, it’ll become second nature to you and you’ll be delighted with how much more productive you are AND how much better you feel!