I considered myself to be really healthy as a kid. I never had to be hospitalized or had any major health issues. Aside from coming up with the flu once in a while, I considered myself blessed with good health. I was born and raised in the Republic of Panama, but in my late teens moved to the United States of America to attend college. As it happens with many college students when they leave home, my eating habits, sleeping hours and exercise routine changed and not for the best. For me it was even more drastic, as I not only moved away from my home, but to a different country. Aside from getting recurring headaches during my college years, I was still able to escape from major health problems. After I got married in my early twenties, my health started to change drastically. In a period of less than a decade, I started to have health issues that I never had before. I went to bed tired and woke up feeling even more tired, I had constant respiratory allergies that got complicated, I was constantly getting the flu, I had recurring ear ache, irregular heart beats and heart pain, pain in my legs and feet, and recurring incapacitating migraines.
Worst of them all was the recurring cases of ascites that left me hospitalized three times during one year. The pain was so strong that every time I had an episode, I was left incapacitated for days. I was seen by many doctors who performed exploratory surgery and tested me for cancer, tuberculosis, and a myriad of other possible diseases.
After I got pregnant with identical twins, I had to be hospitalized for almost two straight months because there was a constant threat of spontaneous abortion that didn’t respond to medication. I was bleeding intermittently. I became anemic. My kids had to be born by emergency C-section two months earlier than their scheduled due date. They had to stay hospitalized at the intensive care unit for a month after being born. The amount of mental and physical stress was extreme. During and after the pregnancy, I started suffering from intense back pain.
I was juggling all of these health issues in a period of around ten years together with my marriage, my new family of four and a very demanding career. I was truly grateful for being able to have access to caring doctors throughout all my health issues and also to have understanding bosses and coworkers. I was a very obedient patient throughout it all but also a passive one. After more than a decade of getting different hypothesis and prescriptions for each of my ailments and none of my conditions getting any better, I decided it was time to change the approach and time to be more active and take full responsibility for my health. I started searching for approaches that would treat my conditions from the root cause, as opposed to getting medications that will only treat the symptoms.
I knew that up into my early 20s I had been a very healthy person so I started to wonder if I could have been causing some of these health issues as a result of poor lifestyle choices (poor sleep, stress, unhealthy foods, too little physical activity, etc.). I started reading dozens of books and medical research studies and everything started taking me down to a more natural, and basic approach to healing. Up until this point, I was still working as a marketing director for a major multinational movie studio. I started acknowledging the high stress levels, lack of sleep, lack of exercise, and wrong food choices that many times come with juggling a career, kids and personal life. My twin premature babies were still suffering with health issues themselves like respiratory and digestive issues. My husband started to have problems with his cholesterol levels.
I started making small changes to the foods we ate and started to pay closer attention to possible health offenders. I evaluated what was most important to me and decided I needed to make drastic changes in my life so I could enjoy a healthy life. I realized that health needed to be a priority. I decided to leave the job that I loved so much. I started to study Integrative Nutrition and started implementing small changes everyday. The sum of all these small changes started to make a huge difference in our health during the following months.
Fast forward to today, I can happily say that aside from any medical diagnostic that I was given, I feel healthier at my mid 40s than I ever did at my 20s. I have more energy, sleep better, I rarely get sick and my mind is much clearer. My husband’s cholesterol levels are normal and my kids are thriving. I realize that this is not over. It’s a lifestyle that we need to constantly work on. Now we know how important this is.
I started seeing clients as a certified Integrative Nutrition Health Coach, AADP and I was amazed at how much satisfaction I got from helping others. Each new client that I helped achieve their health goals taught me so many lessons. My journey seeking better health for me and for my family led me to be where I am today. Not only taking care of my family’s and my clients’ health, but wanting to share what I have learned with as many people as I can. Helping and supporting others inspires and motivates me. It feeds me. This is how Elena’s Healthy Ways was born. I truly believe that making better decisions for our health translates into taking actions that take better care of our world. What’s good for us is good for the environment and vise versa. The world could be in much better shape if we care more for what we consume. Healthier people are happier people. Everyone wins!
I would love for you to join others and me in this movement of people that seek daily inspiration to live a healthier and more energized life and inspire each other in this wonderful journey of self renovation and wellness. I would love to show you how fun, easy and delicious living a healthier life can be!