Hi, I'm carlee!
Just 5 years ago I was a completely different person. I was 30 pounds overweight, clinically depressed, anxious, and suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) that sent me to the ER on a few occasions. Once I even had to call 911 from the bathroom stall at a restaurant (HOW EMBARRASSING)! I was also bald—I had shaved my head a month after getting married in an attempt to control my trichotillomania (a compulsive hair-pulling disorder similar to nail-biting and skin-picking). I was desperate to feel better, but nothing seemed to help. At the hospital they sent me home saying there was nothing wrong with me—apparently I was just “stressed” and needed to “relax"? My gastroenterologist ordered a colonoscopy, which came back normal—surprise!—and told me a BRAT diet might help (bread, rice, applesauce, toast). My psychiatrist literally had no idea what was going on with me and tested at least 4 antidepressants in the span of 6 months on me. None of them helped. All of them made me gain weight. Nobody asked what I ate or talked about nutrition.
At this lowest of low points in my life, I left all of my family and friends and moved to San Francisco with my husband. I immediately found new doctors to continue my care and this is where I discovered functional medicine. I was extremely skeptical, but hopeful, that anyone could help me. In working with an amazing functional doctor and nutritionist I was able to taper down off all of my prescription medications (even my antidepressant and anti-anxiety meds), build a new healthy relationship with food, lose the 30 pounds I gained, grow my hair back out (while significantly minimizing my trichotillomania severity) and most of all, I started to feel normal again! My IBS practically vanished, I haven’t had to call 911 or go to the ER ever again, and I feel GOOD!
I know what it feels like to feel like nobody believes you. To feel like you’ve exhausted all of your options. To feel like maybe this pain and suffering is just normal and you need to accept this is your fate in life.
BUT THIS IS SO SO SO FAR FROM THE TRUTH! You CAN feel better, too! I remember when my doctor promised that she could fix my gut. I looked at her in disbelief. I thought that fixing my gut at that point would be a magical feat. But you know what? She fixed my gut!
I knew that I needed to learn how to help others in the same way she helped me. To me, what she did was magical, but I want to let you know that it’s not magic. It’s nutrition and Functional Medicine!
This is why I decided to get my Master’s of Science degree in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine—to help you get to the root cause of your symptoms just like I did.
I believe in the power of food as medicine. What you eat can either be the cause or cure of disease. You have the power to choose.
Does my story resonate with you? Shoot me a message—I would love to hear your story and help you get your health back!
M.S. Human Nutrition & Functional Medicine, University of Western States - 2017-2019
Post-bac courses in Chemistry, Biochemistry, Anatomy & Physiology, & Nutrition - 2017
B.A. Psychology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill - 2007
Peer Support Volunteer at Shanti Project, San Francisco - since 2017
Cooking Class Volunteer at Cooking Matters, San Francisco - 2017
Community & Customer Support at Airbnb, San Francisco - 2011-2016
Research Analyst at Research Triangle Institute, Durham NC - 2008-2011