Mary Beth Arthur
The insights I’ve gained from working with Emma are innumerable. I had studied nutrition and health for years before coming across her work and feel like I’ve learned far more in a short time working with her than years prior, because everything that I apply from her program yields exponentially better results, feels good to my body, and truly is sustainable. I now deeply understand what ideal human food is, the size and frequency of meals that best supports my physiology, the inner workings of our beautifully delicate endocrine system, how to support it, and so much more!
Before working with Emma, I hit rock bottom with my health which was really hard for me because health and wellness was my biggest passion. For years I had put my faith and trust into learning from what I considered to be the best health educators at the time. It started with giving up meat, all gluten and grains, then dairy, and sugar. I skipped breakfast (and glorified the idea by calling it “Intermittent Fasting”), drank some type of overly hyped vegetable juice until early afternoon, and then during the hours I would actually eat it was always a salad with avocado, maybe a smoothie with only low sugar fruits, and maybe some very dark chocolate. Every time I would get stricter, I would lose maybe one or two pounds and no matter what, I would end up putting those back on with another five or ten over time… even though I was doing everything “right” by the book! I didn’t binge, I didn’t have nights where I gave up and ordered pizza, I was so dedicated and completely blind to the fact that my will power wasn’t the problem, the lack of nutrients and prolonged state of stress was the problem. After a while on the low sugar bandwagon, things got pretty scary. At this point I was eating almost no carbohydrates and carried a bottle of stevia with me everywhere so I could artificially curb my ravenous craving for sweets (it’s like my body was trying to tell me something, imagine that!)…. My energy got REALLY low and I started having some anxiety – both were completely new to me, I’ve always been a high energy and relaxed person naturally. I got so worried that I went to the doctor and had my thyroid checked. They said it was “normal” (I wish I could go back and see the numbers now that I’ve since worked in functional medicine and understand how that test was flawed) and they told me I was probably just getting older and didn’t need to worry. I WAS 25 AT THE TIME! 25 years old, low energy, “you’re just getting older.” Needless to say, I was unhappy, confused, and defeated.
Around this time, I was searching for hours per day on the internet for an explanation of what might be happening to me. I don’t know how I finally came across Emma’s work, but I cannot tell you how hopeful and happy I was to have discovered it. Did it go against everything I had been studying for years? Absolutely. Was I kind of terrified because of that? Without a doubt. However, I was so frustrated and unhappy with what I had been doing that I was just so ready to abandon it altogether and try anything new. I started by reading every article on her blog, reading some of the Ray Peat articles, and making small and strategic efforts to incorporate more of the foods she was recommending.
As soon as I started making small adjustments here and there based off of her work, I saw a difference. My weight was slowly coming off, even though I was eating more food! And, not to mention, foods that I had been avoiding for years!!! My energy was up as SOON as I started adding the right carbohydrates back into my diet. Digestion was so much better. Muscles were more toned even with less exercise. Sleep was deep and restorative. My skin was better than it had been in years (FYI: I had a six month struggle with cystic acne during my raw vegan days and was now eating dairy). I continued easing into this lifestyle over the next five years and was so happy with the results I was getting. In fact, I was so happy with what I experienced that I did not work directly with Emma until this year. All I can tell you is that I wish I had not waited so long to do it! There was still so much to learn and to apply.
Even though I was really happy with my weight from applying what I had learned from her blog, I was still about five pounds over my goal and got there within the first three weeks of working with Emma.
I am truly happier with my body than I’ve been in my entire adult life. My relationship with food is better than I ever knew possible. I don’t spend all day thinking about all the foods I’m not allowed to eat and stressing every time it comes down to me making a decision about what to eat if I’m not in control (out with family at a restaurant, for example). I eat SO MUCH MORE FOOD than I used to eat!!! And I weigh about 20-30 pounds less that I did when I was living on salads and smoothies. I don’t really keep up with counting calories regularly, but I would guess that I’m eating at least twice the amount of calories than I did back then. I eat “normal” foods again which has been really healing for me as well. I eat pizza, ice cream, and burgers regularly… which for a long time I had been brainwashed into thinking that I had to pick between having the body I wanted OR ever having those foods again. Well, I can say now that I have it all! I can have my cake and eat it too (though I prefer ice cream, haha).
If you are even slightly considering working with Emma, I can tell you it is one of the absolute best decisions I have ever made. I would say it’s been the best thing for my mental, physical, and emotional health that I’ve ever done. I love my body. I love food. And I love this approach; I can never ever see myself doing anything else.
Thank you Emma, truly, I cannot thank you enough for everything. You changed my life in ways I cannot even begin to describe.