I’ve had an intense appreciation for all things food since I was a kid.
When I brought home a good report card as a pre-teen, I was rewarded with my very own peanut butter pie. Yes–the entire pie.
I gorged on homemade oatmeal-chocolate-chip cookie dough every summer in middle school (until I wanted to make the cheerleading squad). In high school I ate an average of four Mrs. T’s frozen pierogies topped with mounds of sour cream every day as a snack.
College was no exception. I mean, buffets for every meal?? It’s no wonder I gained the Freshman 15. Papa John’s Pizza never sounded better than at 2 a.m. after a long night of chugging Natty Ice.
As an adult, my appreciation for food has only gotten stronger… healthier and stronger. No one wants to look bloated and feel sluggish the rest of their life, right?
When I started living on my own in my early 20s, I was determined to drop that college weight by cooking healthy meals at home and incorporating more physical activity into my day. I was on a major budget but still wanted to enjoy food and flavor because, to me, eating is one of the greatest joys in life. I learned portion control, discipline, and balance. I came to see food as fuel…tasty fuel.
Over an eight year period, I also worked at several of Los Angeles’ top restaurants and sort of became a “foodie.” Then I got my dream job hosting a national food and travel show called America’s Best Bites on Cooking Channel where I learned even more and had the opportunity to cook and eat with some of the most popular chefs in the country. That led to other TV opportunities including cooking on Hallmark Channel’s hit morning show Home & Family, becoming a food contributor for the popular lifestyle blog Modern Mom, and eventually co-staring on the extreme, bacon-obsessed cooking show Epic Meal Empire on FYI, as the “voice of reason.”
Watch the foodie in action!
While filming Epic Meal Empire with the popular guys of Epic Meal Time, I was eating things like cheeseburger lasagna and fast food sushi because it was my job. As fun as the show was (and, trust me, I can hold my own with those boys in the eating department), something didn’t feel right… and I don’t just mean my stomach after gorging on a meat ice-cream cone.
As the show came to an end, I became pregnant, and the overwhelming desire to make a positive difference became even stronger and more important to me. I knew I wanted to promote health and wellness versus cooking and eating for sport.
Lucky for me, my sister Blair Horton, founder of Holistic Rendezvous, is a Nutrition Consultant & Natural Chef. I’ve always admired Blair–she has always been ahead of her time when it comes to health and our bodies. She continues to teach me so much, and she encouraged me to turn my passion into a business. So I decided to go back to school to become a Certified Holistic Health Coach.
I graduated from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I learned innovative coaching methods, practical lifestyle management techniques, and over 100 dietary theories–from Ayurveda, gluten-free, and Paleo, to raw, vegan, and macrobiotics, and everything in between.
Additionally, I enrolled in cooking classes at New School of Cooking in L.A., under the uber-talented chef and holistic health coach Jess Hilton. She always quoted Michael Pollan: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” Hearing that quote in class really resonated with me. It really can be as simple as that.
I’m determined to help people accomplish their health goals while still staying true to their foodie-selves. There’s a way to look great, feel great, and still enjoy your favorite foods. Whenever I was filming, people would ask me, “How do you stay so trim while eating all that food?” And I’d tell them that you can be a healthy person while still indulging in decadent dishes. You just can’t indulge all the time. And just don’t eat the entire thing (every time).
Because I was able to teach myself how to make healthy choices while still enjoying the best parts of life, I want to give people the freedom to do the same. Whether it’s enjoying those mouthwatering dishes at your favorite restaurant or devouring pizza at home with your family on Friday nights, I want you to be able to do so without feeling guilty. Life is waaaaay too short to only order the salad at the hottest new restaurant. And who doesn’t want to try every dish on a tapas menu? I know I do!
Deprivation is so 1990s. That’s where I come in! So whether you want to lose 10 lbs or 100 lbs., learn how to incorporate more veggies into your life, or find out who you’re truly meant to be, I am your girl! Using my knowledge, we will co-create completely personalized actions based on your goals to move you toward your ideal vision of health within your unique body, lifestyle, preferences, and resources.
Our relationship with food is critical. What we put in our bodies and our children’s bodies really does affect our health, longevity, and, let’s not forget, our planet. We only get one body, and I want to help people take care of theirs so they look and feel their best while living a fulfilling, long life.