Interview With Summer
Please read this before hiring me.
What made you choose to be a Holistic Health Coach, Herbalist, & Fermentationist?
It began with a blueberry smoothie in one hand, a latte in the other and a bar of chocolate open on the floor in front of me. Here it was 9:30am in Organic Chemistry lecture and I was completely dependent on these things to get me through the day.
As I sat there I started daydreaming about my future as a doctor and all the patients I would work with. It occurred to me in that moment that I didn’t want to work with people that I’d have to prescribe pills to. In that moment I literally had an epiphany. I want to work with people who want to have vibrant health and experience life to its fullest! The end result is the same: no disease, but it’s the path that differs. The journey to a thriving body and unstoppable life looks very different than a life filled with medications and procedures to get rid of disease.
I wanted to be a guide for people along the journey to health. That was the defining moment. I was working in a supplement store part-time and earning my degree. While on lunch breaks, I began researching holistic nutrition and found the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York City. I went there and studied with amazing teachers like Deepak Chopra MD, Andrew Weil MD, David Wolfe, Paul Pitchford, Mark Hyman MD, Michio Kushi, Ylana Van Zant, and more.
Why have you made health and healing your life’s work?
In order to answer this question, I’ve got to get personal. When I was young, I used to eat so much sugar you wouldn’t believe it. Fun Dip and marshmallows dipped in peanut butter and sugar were my favorite candy. I’d eat straight white sugar by the teaspoon. And I couldn’t feel a thing. It made me nauseous, but I couldn’t feel that. It made me feel better.
As a teenager, I found some books about nutrition and yoga. I started trying to eat vegetarian and healthy foods, but I thought a low fat diet was healthy. I tried the Atkins diet with my Dad, but didn’t really have the willpower to stick with it. I wanted and craved sweets too badly to keep it going.
Then I started smoking, drinking and doing drugs.
It turned into a daily habit. It was crazy, really, how I ended up in this place in life where I had turned to numbing out as a way of coping with all the huge emotions I felt.
So I moved to San Francisco and on the drive out there, I weaned off drugs all by myself.
San Francisco changed my life. I made good money working at a high-end clothing boutique and saved enough money to go to school. I grew up in the South with a strong connection to the natural world. I enjoyed many long plant walks through the woods as a little girl, my mother leading the way with knowledge overflowing, and my sister and I trailing behind, chewing our “medicinal” twigs. Inspired by these walks, I went to the New Mexico College of Natural Healing and got certified in Herbology.
It was here that I learned how to cleanse and make herbal formulas. And I became excited to learn more about the body, so I moved to Olympia, Washington and went to the Evergreen State College. While studying science, I got super interested in Microbiology and Fermentation.
My liver was wrecked from the years of partying, so I had a slew of health concerns including digestive troubles and a bad case of chemical sensitivity. I found that fermented foods helped my digestion in a big way.
I started selling sauerkraut out of the fridge in my garage. People would take the sauerkraut and leave money in the jar on top of the green fridge. This led to an amazing project called OlyKraut. I am part owner of this incredible company devoted to supporting the local and regional food economy by buying and naturally preserving the harvest and selling it to people to help them heal their gut and make their food taste great.
What is a Health Coach, Herbalist and Fermentationist?
A health coach is someone who teaches you how to have great relationships. This includes other people, yourself, with food, etc.
A health coach educates and coaches you to change the underlying patterns that cause you to act irrationally around food.
An herbalist is trained to make remedies and recommend herbs for everyday ailments, acute situations, chronic disease, and increasing vitality and life force.
A fermentationist is experienced at fermenting many kinds of food and understands the importance of lacto-fermentation and its effects on the health of the human body.
How are you different from a licensed dietician or nutritionist?
A dietician assesses the overall diet and then creates a plan to get particular kinds of nutrition, calories, fats, and carbs from your food.
The programs that I offer help you eat highly nutritious foods, rebuild your intestinal flora and cleanse out toxins from the body. I don’t focus on counting calories and fat grams. Instead I teach you how to eat using intuitive eating and developing your senses into a skill set that honors and trusts the body’s natural abilities and strengths. My approach is a unified mind-body relationship seeing no separation between the two.
Who are your clients exactly?
My clients are practicing health coaches, nutritionists, naturopaths, massage therapists, general wellness practitioners (or those aspiring to work in this field.)
Most of clients struggle with digestive issues, IBS, a need to gain or lose weight, gluten/dairy intolerance, allergies, fatigue, rashes, acne, dandruff, a heavy reliance on enzymes, probiotics, and supplements, and possibly have Candida. Or their clients do and they need support from a mentor who can help them learn the premise of Gut Rebuilding so they can help their clients from the foundation of healing – the digestive system.
They want to end their preoccupation with food so they can focus on flourishing their business and making a huge impact on the world around them.
But they want the mental clarity and spiritual deepening to maintain that deep connection with the earth and their body, which is a huge inspiration in the work they do.
What kinds of personalities do you work with best?
In general, I work best with people who are motivated and self-directed. They are creative and artistic. They need the support to create a tailored healing diet and self-care master plan to achieve more in less time. Plus this helps them keep on top of their game so they can talk the talk and be the walking advertisement with glowing skin that keeps their clients enthralled.
I work great with self-starters who need to feel great with consistent energy levels. I work best with high achievers who know how to take charge of their time and make the most of everything. They know where to reach out for support in their lives and understand that the more support they get the more energy is create to lift them up to flourish.
What type of people will NOT benefit from this program?
This program is not for people who want to count calories, are content to stay on prescribed meds for the rest of their lives, and look to others to ‘fix’ them. I don’t work well with people who think that healing comes from outside of themselves.
I choose to work with people who are willing to invest in themselves, prioritize their healing and see nutrition and herbal medicine as powerful forces that are intrinsically connected to their daily state of mind.
I work with people who are ready to invest in themselves financially and are willing to do the work, make the changes necessary, carve out the time, and understand that healing takes time and involves other levels such as emotional, spiritual, mental and physical.
What exactly is your Gut Rebuilding System, and what does it include?
Gut Rebuilding System is the program that I developed for my individual clients. It is the program that I used to heal from IBS, Candida, allergies, chemical sensitivities, get rid of ADD, and more. This is how I cleaned out my liver and boosted my energy levels for good.
It has been the key to lasting changes for my clients and myself. This program is effective, but not a quick fix. Over several months, you will cover these steps:
1. First you create your baseline. After doing a series of full body pH tests in the privacy of your own home I will interpret the results for you and give you a clear idea of where to start. You will learn the inside story about pH and understand Acid-Alkaline balance to boost energy, improve moods, and create a happy home for probiotics in your belly
2. You will learn how to properly reinstate probiotics into your intestinal tract. You’ll learn about food-based probiotics and supplement-based bacteria and native gut ecology. But you’ll also learn why many kinds of probiotic supplements just PASS THROUGH the digestive tract because they have no place to live! Don’t worry, I’ll show you how to fix this.
3. You will have a working familiarity of the anatomy and physiology of digestion.Then you’ll know how to get your organs functioning highly so they do what they do best…assimilate food.
4. You will learn how to tap into your own internal healer through a process calledIntuitive Eating to listen to and honor exactly what your body wants in each moment. Animals don’t have nutritionists and you’ll learn exactly why they aren’t obese or taking Tums after each meal.
5. You’ll master the fundamentals of food combining to boost digestive fire by utilizing enzymatic competition to your advantage. Personal food guidelines speed up healing by understanding your food sensitivities, discovering your superpower foods and eliminating your energy-sucking kryptonite foods.
6. You’ll learn various herbal remedies that fuel digestive fire, heal mucous membranes, kill Candida, feed probiotics, & heal adrenal glands.
7. You will learn to release the emotional tension that causes physical blockages and ultimately chronic digestive disease through emotional detox.
8. You will create your very own self-care master plan, which is a unique system for eliminating stress and promoting relaxation. This guarantees that your digestion will run smoothly and that you’ll achieve your ideal weight.
Does this really work??
YES! All my clients achieve lasting results, regular breakthroughs, and overall a high level of vitality that lends itself as the foundation to fulfilling their BIG visions.
With your dedication and my support, systems and accountability incredible things can happen!
What results can I expect?
You can expect to:
- Get clear about the obstacles in your way and how to remove them.
- Dump toxins physically and learn to detox emotionally, as well.
- Gain a clear understanding of what supplements you should be taking.
- Gain a deep sense of trust and love for yourself and your body.
- Enjoy life more.
- Get the support to get YOUR self-care needs met and make a game plan based on your own unique way of organizing your time.
- Better digestion, more energy, and an understanding of traditional foods.
Can I see what your former clients have experienced to see what it’s like to work with you?
Yes. Please take a look at the results others have achieved. People just like yourself have come through my programs and experienced results above and beyond what they themselves anticipated.
How fast can I expect results?
Since everyone is difference, it is hard to say exactly. But I do witness that you get out of it what you put into it. Most of my clients see big changes within the first two sessions. If you want to see results that are lasting, you’ll welcome the big transformations that happen a few months into the program.
How can I guarantee myself that I’ll reach my health goals?
If you put the time and energy into the Gut Rebuilding system as it is designed, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to experience results above and beyond your health goals.
How will we work together and what do the programs entail?
Each private client that works with me receives 30-minute coaching sessions. These sessions happen every other week for 6-months after which point it goes month to month.
During the sessions, we will discuss what is going well, what your challenges are, how the last session’s recommendations went and work to come up with the action steps for the coming weeks.
How long are the programs?
My private coaching programs are 1-day VIPs or 6-months with options to go month-to-month after that.
I’ve tested varying lengths of programs and found that when someone works with me for 6-12 months lasting changes are created. I don’t want my clients investing time and money into something that won’t last!
Working for this length of time at a minimum ensures that by the end of the program, you are able to still implement the changes your made in the first couple months.
My group programs vary in length from 8-weeks to 12-months.
Do people continue past the 6 months?
Yes! Many clients love the support they get from me. They find that after achieving their health goals, they are excited to explore new levels of health and improvement. I love my clients, and am always happy to continue our work together.
What are your coaching programs like?
I have a few coaching programs that you can choose from, based on how quickly you want to see results, how much time you want to spend working with me one-on-one, or based on your budget.
Transformation 1-Day (or 1/2 day)
Private Coaching – 6 Month Program
Fermentation Mastermind (FCP Graduates only)
Private Maintenance Coaching – only available to those who have completed 6-months of coaching
Where are you located?
I’m located in Chattanooga, TN. Because I work by phone and the internet, I see clients all over the world. I have found phone coaching to be highly effective even with clients I have never met face to face.
In fact, I’ve found that the results are often better achieved by phone through the safe and confidential environment where you don’t even have to leave your house.
Do you accept credit cards?
Yes. In fact, I set up all my client payments as recurring billing. If you choose to pay in full up front, I offer a 5% bookkeeping discount and this is the only exception where I will accept a check.
Okay, I know which program I want. How do we get started?
Great! You just took the first step towards reaching your goals. If this feels like the right time to focus on YOU and your needs, then go for it!
Here’s what you do: Apply for session here. We will review your application and get back to you to schedule an appointment.
I choose my clients very carefully. You will let me know which program will work best for you in terms of the results you want to get.
My assistant will set up a day and time to start our coaching and get your information in our system. In it, you’ll fill out your client information and goals.
From what you write, I will customize a plan for you using your goals and where you’re at now, to make sure you get the results you want. Because you will have done this, when we actually speak or meet the first time, we hit the ground running, give you strategies and get you started on your path to feeling great.
I’m not sure if I’m ready to get started. How can I sample your work to see if it’s the right path for me?
You can apply for a 30-minute intro session with me here.
You can also sample my work by signing up for my Gut Rebuilding 8-week program.
You may also subscribe to my weekly newsletter where I share videos, tips, thoughts, and insights that keep you inspired to push for your dreams and keep your self-care at the top of your ‘want to do’ list.
I have a family and a busy life. How much time will this program require. I want to get the most out of it, but don’t have much time to spare.
If you can spend at least one hour of time per week towards this, you will make improvements. Sure, you won’t achieve results as quickly as if you jumped wholeheartedly in, but you have to start somewhere.
It takes many steps to reach your goals and you have to start with one step. I know I’d rather fail miserably at something I tried rather than never having given myself the chance to succeed.
Ok, I’m ready, but I still want to ask a couple more questions before I get started. Can I call you?
Glad to hear that you are making yourself a priority! Yes if you have a few questions, apply for an intro session here.