Hi there! My name is Melissa, and I’m a private chef in NYC. I graduated from The Natural Gourmet Institute in 2007, and specialize in cooking for people transitioning away from the Standard American Diet. I love cooking great food thats good for our bodies. My clients have included people with weight loss goals and those needing to manage chronic health conditions, such as high blood pressure and cancer treatment recovery. I also cook for people in the Broadway community, and provide those clients with foods that keep them in top performing condition. I’ve found the best way to address the issues of food sensitivities and allergies is a combination of an elimination diet and the Paleo lifestyle.
In addition to my services in New York, I frequently travel to Good Commons, in Plymouth, Vermont, to cook at yoga retreats. Visit goodcommons.com for more information on these inspiring and restorative getaways.
Throughout my life, I have suffered mysterious health problems and symptoms that neither myself nor my doctors have been able to explain. Since childhood, I have been suffering from allergies, digestive issues, acne, and dismenorrhea, all seemingly unrelated and without clear diagnosis or treatment. I have only been able to alleviate the symptoms, without ever being able to treat the cause – until now.
Through genetic testing, my doctors and I recently discovered that I have an MTHFR genetic mutation. This mutation affects how my body processes B vitamins, and impacts the natural detoxification process that my body needs to function. My practitioner now prescribes specific vitamins and amino acids to address the deficiency this mutation causes in my body, but diet also plays a role in the healing process. I’ve found the Paleo diet (which eliminates grains, legumes and dairy,) to be an effective tool in reducing the chronic inflammation associated with my condition.
As I began to address the deficiencies caused by my MTHFR, I wanted to give my body the best circumstances possible for healing. I learned about the Whole30 , which goes further than standard Paleo/Primal diets by eliminating all dairy (even grass-fed butter!), all sugar (even local honey and organic maple syrup!), and alcohol. The Whole30 has been a valuable program for me in rejuvenating my psychological relationship with food, resetting my cravings and helping me focus on nourishing my body instead of seeking emotional comfort through food.
These experiences have inspired me to guide my clients in their own journeys towards health. I’m passionate about the healing powers of nutritious food, and my drive to help others live well is a fire in my belly (a good kind, for once!)
If you’re interested in learning more about how food can play a role in addressing your health concerns, feel free to reach out. I am also happy to offer free introductory 30-minute phone consultations to discuss your dietary needs and my culinary services.