Vanessa Berenstein, MA RD FMN CCH
Integrative Registered Dietitian
Certified Functional Medical Nutrition Therapist
Masters in Sustainable Food Systems
Certified Mindful Eating (MB-EAT) Instructor
Energy Practitioner (Reiki & Access Bars)
Natural Products Consultant
Healing your relationship with the mind, body & ecosystem
As a teenager, I was overweight, unhappy and tired of dieting. I was bullied and often pressured by others to fit into what was considered "thin" and "beautiful." Eventually, I realized that the most important reason for me to change my diet was to help myself get healthy. When I let go of body image and other people's opinions, I felt much less pressure. I was focusing on health for ME. I started researching and reading everything I could about nutrition, began monitoring my portion sizes and exercising regularly, With this gradual, health-focused weight loss, I stopped dieting and taking shortcuts. I began prioritizing my health, having fun, experimenting with cooking and listening to my body.
I completely turned my life around.
After studying the food system in college, I realized I knew very little about how food is grown and the laundry list of ingredients in "health" products. I had lived in cities my entire life without any direct connection to my food. I decided to spend almost 2 years living and working on organic farms and ecological villages in Mexico and Argentina. It was in these communities that I began to truly understand where my food comes from - everything from the moment a seed is planted until it reaches our plates. Planting a seed, watching it grow, caring for it, harvesting it, processing it, and ultimately eating it allowed me to participate in my food system. Having a direct relationship with each step in this process opened my eyes to the power of food and it's impact on our bodies and our environment.
During that time, I also began learning about meditation, yogic philosophy, Native American spirituality, and intuitive eating. Awareness of my mental and emotional health helped me not only heal my relationship with food, it also repaired my relationship to myself. I learned how to truly enjoy life to the fullest and focus on all the amazing things in my life. Gratitude, self love and self-compassion quickly became a daily practice that has led me to manifesting abundance and balanced health.
While working at an integrative medicine clinic, I saw patients with incredibly complex chronic pain conditions, autoimmune diseases and numerous co-morbidities. At the time, I didn't understand spiritual hygiene and ultimately took on a lot of my patient's symptoms as a highly empathic practitioner. I became incredibly ill, with no clear biological diagnosis that could be identified. I initially targeted physical symptoms. However, I wasn't able to fully heal until I addressed the physical expression of energetic and spiritual trauma that I had taken on. I went through a lot of health trauma and came out with an intense spiritual awakening that changed my entire life.
Through awakening, I learned the true meaning of transformation and all of the slowness and presences it takes to heal from scratch. With strengthened spiritual awareness, I have been able to holistically support my clients. I truly believe spiritual embodiment is the missing link to help people create lasting, sustainable change and overcome blocks to healing.
My passion is to help others experience these powerful transformations and make empowered choices that change their life. My counseling style focuses on creating dynamic, interactive experiences that inspire people to take control of their health and thrive. I make it as simple, delicious and fun as possible for my clients to turn healthy behaviors into sustainable habits.