What is Health Coaching?
There are over 100 dietary theories. Sometimes we are not fed by food but by the energy in our lives. Health coaching is about helping people build a bridge between food and lifestyle.
Please think back to a time when you were passionately in love. Everything was exciting. Colors were vibrant. Intimacy was magical. Your lover's touch and feelings of exhilaration sustained you. You spent every minute walking on clouds, gazing at each other's eyes. You were high on life. Remember a time when you were working on that really exciting project. You believed in it, felt so confident and stimulated that time fell away. Hours passed. Food and sleep were irrelevant.
Sometimes we are fed not by food but by the energy in our lives. Those moments and feelings demonstrate that everything is food. We take in thousands of experiences of life that can fulfill us physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
We hunger for love, fun, touch, romance, play, intimacy, success, achievement, art, music, self-expression, leadership, excitement, adventure and spirituality. All these elements are essential forms of nourishment. And these forms of nourishment are what my teachers at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition call primary food.
Primary food is food that feeds us but doesn't come on a plate.
Healthy relationships, fulfilling career, regular physical activity, a spiritual practice can fill your soul and satisfy your hunger for life. When primary food is balanced and satiating, your life feeds you.
When I was introduced to the concept of primary food it all made sense to me. I've always known about primary food, judging from my level of awareness in my day-to-day experiences, but had never been able to define it or explain it to myself as clearly.
I see the principles of this concept working in my everyday interactions with clients, friends and family. The extent to which we are able to implement these principles determines how enjoyable and worthwhile our lives feel. It has definitely made my practice so much more purposeful.
Primary food provides meaning and fulfillment that secondary food (food that we actually eat) can never give us. When we use secondary food to alleviate or suppress our hunger for primary food, the body and mind suffer. Weight gain is just one of the consequences. What about insomnia, anxiety, diabetes, stress, high blood pressure? Not only that, but we start to mirror these consequences, this hunger for primary food in our relationships, work, and day-to-day activities.
Тhat's where health coaching comes in.
What is a health coach? A health coach is a guide, mentor who provides a safe and confidential environment, a bridge between foods and lifestyle. A health coach supports you in helping shift your behavior to healthier habits by making step-by-step changes that are in alignment with your individual wellness goals. Key word here is individual.
What works for one may not work for another. That's why a health coach takes an individual and unbiased approach to each client, making their progress toward health and happiness a safe and personalized journey of success.
Many don't have a safe space to share their health concerns, personal goals and aspirations, so being heard by someone else, someone who can be trusted, is very powerful. This allows them to think aloud and hear their own thoughts.
I can't express to you how beautiful this process is. I see it all the time – that spark of hope and inspiration – it literally changes lives. I think that's my favorite part about health coaching – seeing clients step into their light with renewed confidence. Everything else just seems to fall into place after that.
It makes me realize that most of us long to be heard, long to feel supported, wanted, and valued more than we need a new diet plan. As spiritual emotional beings connecting on an energetic level can be more healing to the physical body than anything else.
A health coach works with individuals who may not necessarily be practicing many bad habits, but who are not practicing enough of the good habits, who are health conscious but need support, an accountability partner and guidance in one or more areas of life.
Some clients want 1-hour calls per week, just talking – about anything and everything – what they've been challenged with during the week, their achievements, their progress, their aspirations. Other clients want а more structured and organized plan like a 6-month coaching program. No matter what the client chooses a health coach is completely dedicated to providing a safe and personalized guide to health, happiness, and well-being for every individual. It really is a personalized journey.
Let me know if you want to hear more about my experience as a student at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, why I enrolled and how I found out about the school.
Wishing you a wonderful day,