People ask me all the time, “How did you get into nutrition?” It’s kind of a roundabout story, but it started with my own quest to feel better. No, I didn’t always feel this good. Actually, I felt pretty bad for awhile there — fluctuating energy, digestive issues, respiratory infections every other month… nice way to spend your 20’s, right?! Don’t feel too bad for me — I still managed to have a lot of fun!
So, while looking for answers, I did a lot of research, saw a lot of doctors, did a lot of unnecessary testing, and spent a lot of money on things that didn’t work. It was not until I found the right doctor, a naturopath who practiced functional medicine, that I started to feel better and eventually got my health back. The most valuable lesson I learned from all of this was making the connection between what I ate and how I felt. I never before fully realized what a tremendous impact food had on my energy level and my health in general. That was it! I was hooked! My trashy novels were replaced by nutrition books, my Snickers bars were replaced with protein shakes, and I would discuss anything remotely related to nutrition with anyone who would listen.
I was working in the fashion industry at the time and one day, while on the phone with a friend, I mentioned how I was tired of my job and how I needed to find something more fulfilling, something I was really passionate about. My friend quite bluntly replied, “Oh, just shut up already and go become a nutritionist like you know you want to!” Talk about a lightbulb moment! Two weeks later I was enrolled in a master’s program in nutrition and the rest, as they say, is history.
I still consider this one of the single best decisions of my life. I am passionate beyond words about helping others regain their health and improve the quality of their lives, and I am honored to have the privilege to do so. I can say in all honesty that if I won the Mega Jackpot, I would still do what I do — just from a more exotic location…
Jacqui Justice holds a Masters Degree in Clinical Nutrition from New York Medical College and is licensed by New York State and Connecticut. In addition, she has completed an advanced training program in Functional Clinical Nutrition with Designs for Health Institute. Jacqui has been in private practice as a Functional Nutritionist since 1996 and treats clients around the world in her virtual practice.
It’s ALWAYS about balance: Never say never! I’m going to be completely honest here, because I would be totally fibbing if I said that I’m NEVER going to drink coffee, eat a red velvet cupcake (gluten-free of course), or God forbid – NEVER have a delish craft cocktail or glass of wine ever again. It just ain’t gonna happen. Now I know from experience that if I indulge in any one of these things too often – especially the third – the results are not pretty. So I don’t. To me, it is more important that I feel good the next day. Been there, done that, don’t like it. So, I play by the 80:20 rule and sometimes even 90:10 rule, but rarely the 100% game, because, well frankly, it’s just no fun and it just hasn’t proven to be a good long-term plan.
Life was meant to be enjoyable – not an exercise in deprivation. A person is way more likely to stick to a healthy eating plan if they have a little wiggle room here and there. Sooooo that’s how I roll and guess what? It works. That is not to say that there are not some situations when a person, due to certain health issues or during a detox, has to be as close to 100% as possible. This is usually just for a period of time until they bring their system back into balance. See? It’s ALWAYS about balance…
I believe in a totally customized, targeted, and individual approach, using a combination of symptoms, lifestyle, test results, and intuition — yes, even intuition —when designing a nutrition plan, because this approach produces the quickest and best results for my clients. Like snowflakes, we are all unique. No two people have the same metabolism, biochemical makeup, health concerns, behavioral issues, or nutritional needs. Failing to address these issues when designing a nutrition program can lead to poor results and frustration. My focus is on helping my clients get back into balance and then setting realistic goals to achieve lifelong health and wellness.
Anyone who has embarked on any weight loss or wellness program more than once can tell you that if you are not in the proper mindset it will be very difficult. Every obstacle will get in your way, and you will most likely end up right where you started. But the good news is, once you’re in the proper mindset and in the groove, the rest comes easy! Getting you in the right mindset to achieve your weight loss or wellness goals is an integral part of our work together and is the key to achieving and maintaining permanent results.
Jacqui has been featured in the New York Times, The Journal News, Women’s News, The Daily Meal, Westchester Magazine, Serendipity Magazine, and various local publications. She is a course author on the DailyOm with her best-selling Mojo Weight Loss course and Shedding Your Menopausal Middle. Jacqui is also the co-host of the radio show and podcast Ladies It’s Not Our Fault, It’s Our Hormones And Highheals. Check out more top press on Jacqui Justice, MS, CNS