Hi, and welcome to Wellness Wisdom with Whitney! I have a very important question for you:
Have you ever felt trapped or imprisoned by the endless diets and rounds of exercise that seem to go nowhere? I want to help you escape that endless trap and help you create a healthy, lasting lifestyle for an authentic, happy YOU!!
I am Whitney Cumpson, an up and coming Health Coach and a doTerra Wellness Advocate in Virginia Beach, VA. I am currently enrolled in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN) and will be a pre-certified Health Coach in December 2014, and a Certified Health Coach upon obtaining my certificate in June 2015. First and foremost, I want to say that I don’t believe in the word “diet.” I think a person who “diets” sets themselves up for failure, because it’s all about restrictions and things they can’t have. Instead, I’m here to help you focus on lifestyle changes and focus on all the amazing foods you CAN eat! There is a wide array of real, whole foods that are nourishing and healthy and absolutely delicious!! I want to help you discover that deliciousness!
Now I know some of you may be asking what, exactly, is a Health Coach and a Wellness Advocate? A Health Coach is someone who works with you to help you understand and create healthy eating habits, build a healthier relationship with food, define your specific health goals, gain awareness around lifestyle nourishment, provide you support and motivation, as well as help you create a personalized action plan to reach your health goals. I’d work with you on all these things (and more) and help hold you accountable on your progress. A Wellness Advocate provides you information and education on doTerra essential oils and how they can help you in your every day life. They are safe and easy to use for you, your children, your family, EVERYONE! Essential oils go hand in hand with your health and lifestyle goals! I’ve recently started using them for all sorts of things and I LOVE them!! But I’ll tell you a bit more about that in a later post.
First, I want to tell you a little about myself. It’s been a long road of personal discovery into my health problems, one that’s involved a lot of doctor trips and not understanding why I felt the way I did. It’s also one that involves a lot of self-discovery and learning about myself, as well as how to create the healthiest, happiest version of myself I could possibly be.
About 5 years ago, I was ending a very unhealthy relationship – one that included an engagement ring and a lot of wedding plans. I was unhappy, my face was breaking out (which I attributed to stress), I wasn’t sleeping well at all (insomnia, waking up with night sweats, etc.), I was unsatisfied at work, my anxiety was through the roof, and I had zero energy – I had enough to get up, work out, drag my sorry butt to work, then come home to eat dinner, sleep and do it all again the next day. It was no way to live my life. At the time, I did the “normal” thing of going to my regular doctor, who tested my thyroid and iron levels and found that everything was “normal.” He told me I was super healthy and that if all his patients were as healthy as me that he wouldn’t have a practice. However, I was still exhausted (this really doesn’t accurately describe how I was feeling) and breaking out and unhappy. I went to a dermatologist, as well, for my acne. Surprisingly, they put me on antibiotics. This wasn’t the first time I’d been on them for this issue, nor was it the first time I’d been on them in my life. I started having strep throat every year from a young age and was on antibiotics on an annual basis to cure it. In fact, I had strep throat three times in the first semester of my freshman year in college!! Yes, I still had my tonsils then. I didn’t get them out til I was almost 26!! Needless to say, I’d been on antibiotics almost my entire life!!
When I started realizing what the antibiotics were doing to my body, I talked to my dermatologist about going off them and asking if food could be causing my issues. Of course, the answer was no. So I did what anyone would do – I stopped taking the antibiotics, obviously. I didn’t want to have to rely on a medication for the rest of my life just to have clear skin. Shockingly, my skin issues came right back. There was a period where I didn’t want to go anywhere in public it was so bad. It seemed as if the only thing that worked was antibiotics…talk about super depressing.
Fast forward to 2011, I’m still having a lot of health issues – from severe anxiety to insomnia to acne. I yo-yoed between feeling okay and feeling awful, and between clear skin and severe break-outs. Nothing had really changed from the past couple years – I was unhappy with how I felt, how I looked, my overall health and physical body, my emotional and mental state, and my career path. I was at my wit’s end; I was tired of going to doctors and having them tell me nothing was wrong, that I was healthy. For goodness sake, I was miserable!!! I didn’t know how to turn it all around, so I started doing some of my own research online (who doesn’t love Google?!) and attempting to learn all I could to make the necessary changes I needed. I’d been a vegetarian for three years at that point, and my mom recommended a chiropractor and nutritionist for my ongoing issues (I also had neck/shoulder/back pain from a previous injury). The new doc immediately put me on a “cleanse;” now, mind you, I was already eating no dairy and no meat, but he put me on a very restrictive cleanse. On this cleanse, I wasn’t allowed to eat bread, alcohol, certain fruits or vegetables, no dairy (but I could substitute coconut yogurt, for instance), to name a few. The problem was I was starving! And I had no energy to do much of anything! It was even worse than before!! I barely had the energy to get out of bed and make it through the workday, let alone keep up my active lifestyle of running and working out. I knew this cleanse wasn’t working for me.
I guess I should back up and say that I was one of those “unhealthy” vegetarians. You know, the ones who eat fake meat and all the processed stuff that comes in the frozen section, as well as continuing to eat the high sugar “low fat” treats. Let’s just say cooking was unheard of for me. I wanted to eat right away without having to wait for anything. Having the microwave beep after 3 to 4 minutes to let me know my meal was ready was enough for me. So in comes 2012/2013: I made a resolution to start cooking (basically to teach myself how to cook) and use more whole foods. I HAD to break myself away from the processed, frozen meals! It took me awhile to find “easy” recipes that I was willing to try and that I enjoyed, and honestly, I felt like I was hungry all the time, but once I got “better” at cooking, I found I actually enjoyed it, and felt so much better! My face started clearing up, although I was still having breakouts, and still having insomnia issues. I felt better, but I knew I wasn’t where I wanted to be. I even went through a stage where I did a juicing cleanse and tried to have at least one “juice” meal a day. I can honestly say it was very healthy and I felt great, but I was STARVING all the time. I don’t think juice as a meal replacement works for someone as active as me. But they were definitely good and good for me, just not the best way for me to “cleanse” my system.
I could go on for days about how awful I felt, but I need to start preparing for Thanksgiving tomorrow! I can’t believe it’s already this time of year! Friends, family, and yummy food! It doesn’t get any better than that! Enjoy your holidays and look for post 2 in the next week!
Lots of love and wellness!