October E-news: Stress, holidays, and more!

Happy Fall, Everyone! 🍂🍁Hope this finds you with cooler weather and some ability to find joy in your day despite the heaviness in the world.

Much of health coaching, as a matter of fact, is about finding that balance. Many people find themselves consumed by the onslaught of terrible news these days. I would offer an invitation for you to explore the “and.” It is OK to feel the heaviness, AND to have joy, and things that comfort you in your life. It is OK to have a friend with a terminal illness, for example, AND to still laugh at a funny joke or take delight in a wonderful meal. In fact, it’s essential to our health. Your laughter does not mean you don’t grieve for tragedies, but we are all alive, and we need to live.

The basic pillars of health are of course diet, sleep, movement, and stress management. Some of what I’m talking about falls under stress management; however, there are other pillars of health, which include sunlight, community, and play. When you live only in sadness, you are potentially missing some big important pieces of your mental and physical health.

May I remind you that “health” is not just physical. To be completely healthy means mental, physical, social, etc. Consider the World Health Organization’s definition of health:https://www.who.int/data/gho/data/major-themes/health-and-well-being


Below is my answer to an email to a former colleague who recently signed up to receive my newsletter and shared a bit about their own health enlightenment. I hope it is thought provoking and/or educational for you.

Thanks for taking the time to share! I can absolutely appreciate your concerns, and share many of them. There is plenty of ego and dogma, and neither belong in functional OR conventional medicine… but here we are. Part of what drives people to coaching is there is so much conflicting information out there, they don’t know how to sort it out. I’m grateful that my job is not to tell people what to do. There is an art and a science to guiding people to their own conclusions, and I love the study and practice of it.

I’m grateful for training from a practitioner (Kresser) who was very clear at the outset that every body (literally) is different and that it’s virtually impossible to prescribe one thing that works for everyone. He talked extensively about a “paleo template” which advocates for living a life as closely as we can (given modern life) to how we are biologically adapted to live. That means a nutrient dense, whole food, anti-inflammatory diet. But dairy? Works for some, not others. High fat, low carb? Works for some, not others. You get the gist. And it also does mean managing other pillars of health, such as sleep, stress, movement, sunlight, community, play, etc. I have heard opinions change from diet is most important to how lack of sleep is deadly, to how stress is the biggest killer. Again, I’m glad I don’t have to decide. I work with people where they want to start. Diet is often the most straightforward, although still not easy.

I leave many decisions to the medical and nutritional practitioners, but my training and education is about helping people evaluate possible risks and benefits of the options, and making decisions about how to proceed, evaluate, tweak, etc., with diet, and many other kinds of habit/behavior changes. And I do have enough training to correct blatant misinformation, such as granola bars are good for us, or that cereal and orange juice is a healthy breakfast.

I originally thought I wanted to be a health coach because of my own suffering and resolving Hashimotos and gluten intolerance. And that’s true, as I suffered greatly, and I think needlessly. But underneath all that, too, is the fact that I lost my dad to heart disease. I was there when he died, and I know what his final years and days were like. I will do whatever I can to help people ready to explore to figure out how NOT to die like that. That’s in part what’s fueling the growing passion for food addiction and weight loss. And it all starts in the head. You can set forth to change your diet and exercise, but if you’re not connected to why, and haven’t really thought through the planning of it all, it’s incredibly hard. A health coaching partnership can be really powerful.

I smiled at your statement about having cleaned up your diet and become an evangelist. I did some of that too, when I went gluten-free, as it resolved a host of miserable symptoms that people were brushing off as stress, yet which were bad enough that I said to my husband at one point, “If this is progressive, I hope I die young.” I have just channeled that evangelism into something more professional, as a health coach. :-)”

I am passionate about what I do, and would be honored to have a conversation about your health needs, and also honored by referrals of your friends and family. The world needs health coaches, and I will keep sharing these messages for as long as I humanly can. 

Consultations are free.

Understanding and Exploring Food Addiction, an 8-week group coaching program, is coming every Tuesday in Feb-March 2024 (all virtual), from 11:30AM to 1 PM Eastern time. Limited to 6 spots. Please reach out if you are interested/curious.  [email protected].

Holidays are coming fast. Want a 60-90 minute group check-in with your office, friends, or colleagues about how to manage holiday stress, or how to keep your diet from completely going off the rails in this season of food? We can arrange it! That would be limited to 8 people tops (4 minimum), and could be offered at a nominal rate of $30 per person. Feel free to reach out and we’ll figure out the best times to put it together, and can discuss how to customize the agenda to what you most want from the time.

Until next time, to your good health!

Janet Frank, Ph.D., A-CFHC, NBC-HWC, PFAC

National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coach

ADAPT Certified Functional Health Coach

Certified Professional Food Addiction Coach

janetfrankcoaching.com; [email protected]

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