I am an integrative clinical nutritionist who focuses on helping clients optimize their mental health through nutrition and lifestyle change. I have a Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition and am uniquely qualified to offer nutrition therapy from a functional medicine model. I know first-hand the power of nutrition to heal and am passionate about sharing my experience and knowledge with others.
Health begins in the gut. What we eat directly influences the health of our digestive tract and our microbiome. Most of our immune system is found within the gut, so naturally, when the gut is functioning poorly the rest of the body and mind will suffer. Through nutritional interventions we provide the gut what it needs to be well, and that wellness is then translated into health for the entire mind and body.
When I’m not being a nutritionist you can usually find me hiking the many trails around my home, crocheting awesome creations, reading, boxing, doing yoga, or adventuring with my husband and children.
I am frustrated with the hopelessness and lack of support when people start to notice things don’t feel quite right anymore in their bodies or mind. Many seek help, but find their options limited. Meanwhile, their symptoms worsen and the cycle of hopelessness continues. Symptoms are loud, so we tend to attack those head on. The trouble is, if we are trying to stop the ripples (or symptoms) in a pond by attacking the ripples we will not succeed. We must stop the drip (or root cause).
Our bodies have not evolved fast enough to manage our modern lifestyles. Constant stress, very little sleep, pesticides, pollution, processed foods, etc. take a toll which accumulates over the years. This constant onslaught overwhelms the immune system, destroys our gut health, and leaves us vulnerable to nutrient deficiencies and poor health. The saddest part? We are starting to accept that feeling unwell is just part of life. The truth is bodies are beautifully and intricately designed to heal and to come back to a state of wellness if they have the proper nutrients and care.
One of the greatest tragedies I see today is the way we are treating our children and those who struggle with their mental health. When a child has trouble learning in conventional ways, they get labeled, and families find there aren’t many options to help. Many children eat a diet that is full of calories, but light on nutrients. Growing minds require nutrients to function properly. Parents are desperate to help their children thrive, but may not know how to proceed. IFN can help!
Many people are suffering from poor mental health. Often they feel trapped and know something is wrong, but no one is looking into their biochemistry to see if there is a nutrient deficiency that may be the missing link in their journey. Functional nutrition therapy explores and seeks to correct nutritional deficiencies that may be road blocks to vibrant health.
I became a nutritionist because I needed help to find answers for my own health and the health of my family. I started Integrative Functional Nutrition, LLC because I want to be part of the solution for those individuals and families that are seeking to regain and maintain their health. People want to be heard and understood when they say “things are off;” not lumped in a category or made to feel they are the problem. I believe that you are the only person who can know what health feels like in your body, and that you have a right to work with providers who listen to and collaborate with you. Together we can determine how best to support and nourish your body. You can take your power back, you can be healthier every day, and you can help your loved ones do the same.
MS in Clinical Nutrition
BA in English Literature and Editing
200 hour Yoga Alliance certified yoga instructor
Member of Association for Size Diversity and Health (ASDAH)
Professional member of American Nutrition Association (ANA)
Intuitive Eating training
As a young college student in the prime of her life Melanee started to have troubling symptoms. She was in constant pain, had daily headaches (which she could not remember ever not having), and was struggling with overwhelming fatigue. A firm believer at the time in powering through, she kept up her crazy pace until she was finally forced to slow down. About that time she was also experiencing unexplained weight gain and infertility. Melanee did what anyone would do; she went to the doctor. She had a great doctor who listened and believed her when she described her situation and he dutifully sent her off to specialist after specialist who ran test after test. As each new test came back “within normal limits” she was left feeling like she was imagining her symptoms. She felt that what she was experiencing was real, but was told she was completely healthy because of a set of conventional labs. Then she was prescribed anti-depressants which made her symptoms so much worse.
In desperation, Melanee started to explore other options and found yoga. It was the only thing that brought relief. She became a 200-hour certified yoga teacher and still loves teaching yoga when the opportunity arises. Through yoga she was introduced to alternative forms of medicine and decided to try dietary change. It was remarkable how quickly she felt better. Yet, Melanee will be the first to admit that she is still very much a work in progress. Through the years since then, Melanee has learned how one-size-fits-all nutrition approaches are ineffective. We are all unique all the way down to our biochemistry. Nutrition must be personalized.
Melanee became a Clinical Nutritionist to give others the hope she found through nutrition, but also because she feels passionately that integrating functional nutrition with conventional treatments is a better way to achieve wellness. She loves teaching people about what is going on within their cells. She geeks out regularly on the wonders of the microbiome and the intricate biochemistry of our bodies. Melanee uses current science, her client’s individual functional lab findings, a thorough history, and a nutritional physical exam to create a plan that is truly integrative for her clients. Having vibrant health is a journey, and like any journey there is joy and learning along the way. Sometimes we simply need a little help to see it.