Hi! I’m Lauren.
I am a clinical nutritionist and personal chef that works with motivated men and women who are struggling with their overall health. I educate and inspire my clients to utilize the healing powers of food to nourish and heal their bodies. I want to help you thrive!
I am especially skilled at working with a variety of food sensitivities and intolerances because I know first hand how frustrating eating and cooking can be when you have those restrictions.
Welcome to total body nourishment!
I graduated from San Diego State University (go Aztecs!) with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Foods & Nutrition. I also attended the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I became a Health Coach.
Although I did not go to culinary school, I am a self-taught Personal Chef who received many hours of education through Food Network Television and experimenting in my kitchen 🙂
I gained clinical expertise from my formal education, but my real knowledge comes from my own experiences. Life has a way of teaching me things I could never learn in a textbook.
If I had to describe myself it would go something like this… nutritionist, healthy chef, dance enthusiast, and lover of Jesus.
I’ve been lucky enough to endure a few hardships that led me straight to my calling (all part of God’s perfect plan). Growing up as a dancer, I was always in good physical shape from an appearance standpoint. What I didn’t learn until I was in my late teens/early 20’s was that my seemingly healthy body was suffering internally. After years of struggling with health issues, I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and Celiac disease. One year after my diagnoses, I nearly lost my life to Toxic Shock Syndrome (it’s not as rare as you think). To say my body has been through a lot would be an understatement. At the ripe ol’ age I am (a hint of sarcasm), I value every breath of life that I’m given. With pain comes progress; we must grow in the midst of hardship to step into the gifts God has for us. Little did I know at the time, but God was preparing a beautiful life for me. So here I am now, a nutritionist and personal chef loving the work I’m blessed to do everyday.
I created this company to share my never-ending passion of nutrition. I am passionate because I know how important proper nutrition is for the body. If I had the education and experience that I have now when I was younger, I can only imagine how different things could have been for me. It would be selfish not to share my knowledge!
The diagnoses of my autoimmune conditions weren’t what changed things for me. It was when I survived Toxic Shock Syndrome at 20 years old that changed my life forever.
I didn’t think I would dance again. When you’re transferred from the ER to the ICU in critical condition, it’s pretty much a given that the recovery will be hard. The first time I was able to get out of my ICU bed and walk felt like pure freedom (granted, I had a walker and took about 5 steps). After one week of being in the ICU, doctors told me I had lost over 60% of the muscle in my body. When I left the hospital, I remember looking at my legs when I was being wheeled out to the car. My legs had become as thin as my arms (and let’s just say I don’t have the biggest biceps). As happy as I was to finally be going home, I was holding back tears thinking about all the years of getting strong as a dancer was taken away in one short week.
For a few weeks after the hospital, it was hard to get up the stairs in my house. It was even hard to take a shower. I remember my dad putting a large ice chest in the shower for me to sit on because standing for that long just didn’t work.
Anyone who knows me well would tell you that I don’t give up easily and I can be pretty stubborn (which I’m willing to admit); so when I realized how weak my body had become, I knew I had to do something.
Dance is the only exercise I enjoy, and with that being off the table, I did the closest thing I could: Zumba. So there I was, in my room, frail and weak trying to merengue like the people on my TV screen (go ahead, laugh). Honestly, I enjoyed every second of it, until the day after when I would get sick. For a few weeks, every time I would put any stress on my body, I would get sick. Exercise is a form of stress, so when my heart rate went up, my immune system went down. It was a vicious and frustrating cycle. How was I supposed to get stronger if I couldn’t exercise?
Then it hit me… food. I knew that there had to be some correlation with the foods I was putting into my body and the recovery process. I took my butt to Barnes & Noble (my favorite store) and headed straight to the health section. I began reading every book I could get my hands on and researching online about anything and everything nutrition.
I was currently on summer vacation from San Diego State University where I was majoring in criminal justice at the time. As I started reading more and more about nutrition, I decided to give food a try. I bought a juicer and began making green juice every day for about 6 weeks. Since that first bitter green juice, my life has never been the same. My body was finally working with me instead of against me.
When I went back to school in the fall (against doctors orders), I changed my major to Foods & Nutrition. I had to make it my future career because I saw what a couple months of studying and living a healthy lifestyle did for my body. I finally felt alive! I knew I had to learn as much as I could about nutrition. It’s the most fascinating subject that I will never cease to learn about.
Although I’ve made incredible progress, it has never been an easy road when it comes to my health. Autoimmune diseases are a class of their own and the stress my body went though surviving a toxic blood infection is still lingering today. What I do know is this: nourishing your body with the right foods will allow for a vibrancy that isn’t possible otherwise. And God gets every bit of glory for the work he’s done in my life. I wouldn’t be here without the grace and goodness of my Lord and Savior.
If you asked me 5 years ago what I would be doing today, I never would have imagined having my own business, being a dance teacher, and being so incredibly thankful just to be alive. Blessed doesn’t even begin to describe it. My battles have led me to my dreams and I couldn’t be more grateful for that.
Alright, friends… Grab a green juice, put on your favorite tunes, and join me on this beautiful journey called life!
With joy and health,
When I’m not working with clients or cooking up a storm in their kitchens, you can find me teaching competitive dance, exploring nature, or hanging out with my adorable dog, Elmo.
If there’s one thing I know for sure it’s this:
Wake up thankful every day because with thankfulness comes joy. And who wouldn’t want that?!
Find out how you can work with me here.