Madi is someone that I really wish I got to know better back when I worked with her! She has a refreshingly calm spirit, is down-to-earth, and is truly fun to be around. The thing I like about Madi is that despite how knowledgeable she is in her field of nutrition, you can know solely based on her presence and personality that she dedicates her life to it. Her drive to pass on her understanding of functional nutrition is super motivating, it has been great to see her practice take off! Check out her Q/A below and enjoy:
Q: Tell me about your background in nutrition and what you are doing now
A: I have been working in the health field since 2011 and decided to take the plunge and go back to school to become a nutritionist in 2014. I initially pursued the route of becoming a Registered Dietitian, but quickly realized that my values lined up better with the functional medicine perspective which is more holistic and strives to uncover the root cause of ailments. I graduated from Nutrition Therapy Institute in 2017 as a Nutrition Therapy Practitioner and started my practice, Santé Health and Wellness. I primarily focus on digestive wellness, as I believe that gut health is the foundation for full-body balance. I offer advanced lab testing such as food sensitivity testing, comprehensive stool analysis, and environmental toxin exposure. I love helping people identify the source of their symptoms and use this as a road map to restore balance and health!
Q: What are the most common questions you get?
A: People often ask me:
"Is gluten bad for you?"
"What is the perfect diet?"
"Are supplements really necessary or beneficial?"
And my answer to all of them are the same: it depends on the person! Acknowledging each person as bio-individual is very important to me in my practice. We all have different nutritional needs, physical demands, genetic make-up, and biological weaknesses/strengths. That is why I enjoy working one on one with clients, because we can really formulate a nutrition plan unique to the individual.
Q: What are some common myths regarding Nutrition?
A: There are so many! One harmful myth that has been persisting since the 60's is that all fat is bad for you. Low fat diets tend to substitute natural animal fats (that have lots of healing qualities) with highly processed vegetable oils (which are usually rancid), fake butter products, and tend to be much higher in sugar to compensate for flavor. Natural fats from whole food products are vital for brain health, hormone production, and cell health since every cell membrane is composed of fat!
Another myth regarding nutrition is 'you are what you eat.' I like to correct that statement by saying 'you are what you digest and absorb.' You can have the 'perfect' healthy diet, but if your digestive tract is not healthy (aka 'leaky gut'), you won't be able to absorb the nutrients and will become nutrient deficient regardless of the quality of food you are eating.
Q: What are the best and worst foods you can eat?
A: That's a challenging question since every person is bio-individual! But without considering unique circumstances like genetics and food sensitivities, I would have to say the worst foods to eat are the highly processed foods that have little to no nutrient value. This would include things that have been created in a lab to be chemically addictive such as Doritos. You know that flavor isn't natural and we all know how you also can't just have 1 chip! Not only is this type of food lacking nutrients, it actually contains harmful ingredients that can be neurotoxic.
The best foods are usually those that don't have a label - which means they haven't been processed at all! This would include fruits, veggies, nuts/seeds, eggs, and locally sourced organic animal products.
Q: What are your top pieces of advice for those seeking to eat better?
A: Beyond reducing processed foods, the next level of 'eating better' is increasing nutrient density by eating the rainbow of fruits and vegetables! Each color represents different nutrients, bioflavonoids, and antioxidants. So by simply eating a large variety of colors every day, you are increasing your nutrients.
A second piece of advice is to tend to your gut bugs! This means regularly eating fermented foods, root vegetables, and choosing organic whenever possible. A healthy gut sets the foundation for a healthy body.
Lastly, avoid sugar! Sugar is literally toxic to the body and it feeds harmful bacteria in the body which can lead to a whole host of issues. There are many more healthy sweet alternatives such as honey, stevia, maple syrup, and fruit!
Q: What is your favorite healthy recipe?
A: My favorite recipe is always changing because I'm always cooking up something new! Currently I have been in love with Zucchini Noodle Carbonara. It is super easy and is free of most common allergens like dairy, gluten, sugar, and eggs! (Recipe below)
Website: Santé Health and Wellness