Today we’re visiting with Dr. Stacia Kelly, PhD, a holistic health coach, clinical hypnotherapist and author of three books on health and wellness.
Dr. Stacia is here to talk about her four-step guide to better health and vitality and her upcoming new book, Slim, Fit, Happy You.
Small Business Trendsetters: Dr. Stacia please start by telling us the types of people that you work with and what you’re able to do for them.
Dr Stacia Kelly: I really have three types of people that I help, but the majority of them are people wanting to lose weight. Everybody wants to lose at least five pounds, right?
SBT: I certainly do.
Dr Stacia: Yeah, at least five pounds. I have people that I help that are a lot heavier than that or just want to fit into a wedding dress. Mostly it’s the people that are just tired of being sick and tired. That is their biggest complaint.
SBT: In addition to the weight, what kind of manifestations does being overweight create in the life of the people that you work for?
Dr Stacia: A lot of people will head into work and that’s all they do. The most they can do when they get home is sit on the couch because they’re mentally exhausted, not just physically exhausted.
Their bodies are inflamed because of the processed food that they’re eating and the stresses that are causing even more inflammation in their systems. It’s like a perfect storm that ends up happening.
Some of them end up with congestive heart failure. Quite a few people come to me after having a stroke to get back on track. Weight loss is part of it, but getting their heart healthy and getting their sugar levels under control, those kinds of things. It’s amazing how many other things manifest, not just weight.
SBT: Weight is symptomatic of other problems that are going on, isn’t that true?
Dr Stacia: Very true. Very true.
SBT: There’s an emotional level to all of this, isn’t there?
Dr Stacia: Very much so. You have to add in some ways to get over that mental exhaustion or the depression that kicks in. Some people don’t realize that there are alternatives out there other than drugs to help them with those things. We need to take a look and listen to our bodies and what’s not working.
SBT: How did you originally get into holistic health coaching?
Dr Stacia: I was very sick as a child. I would end up with pneumonia or bronchitis twice a year, every year. I was very allergic to the great outdoors, as my mother liked to put it.
I also learned at an early age that I’m allergic to antibiotics and the more they gave them to me the worse my reactions were. I started learning about meditation in my teens and different herbal teas and things like that to help counter some of these things.
We had a lot of things going on in my teens so I had to start getting healthy because I had to take care of my mom who had developed sarcoidosis and we had to start getting her healthy.
SBT: It sounds almost like necessity was the mother of invention here. You had to learn about all of this.
Dr Stacia: Yes. The only other option was to subject myself to traditional medicine that was just going to make me worse. I decided to go the route of fitness, nutrition and supplementation.
SBT: How long have you been doing this and where have you drawn your knowledge from?
Dr Stacia: My original training, God bless my mother, was from her.
Then I read everything I could voraciously through high school, college and my masters program. My undergraduate and graduate degrees are in writing and communication, and then I decided to go after my PhD in holistic health.
SBT: When people approach you for your help, what have you found is the biggest thing that prevents them from having the level of health and energy that they want? What’s the hurdle that they’re not seeming to be able to get over?
Dr Stacia: First, they don’t have enough nutrients in their system. Most people are living on a processed food, fast food diet and they’re going from one place to the next and they’re just on a dead run. Their eating habits are poor.
Around here in the Washington, DC area they’re stuck in traffic for four hours a day so their stress level is through the roof, plus they’re inhaling all the toxins from the car fumes. Then they’re just stressed out in general. All these things are going on inside them, causing their bodies to react at the cellular level.
I’ve learned in the last eight years of doing this that I have to get the nutrients into their system first so that their energy levels come up and they start being aware of how they’re feeling. Then they’re willing to start making changes in other aspects of their lives. That’s the biggest challenge that I’ve found.
I wanted to try to do it the reverse so I could try to help people with their fitness or their nutrition first. But their energy levels aren’t there and they can’t stick to it, or I maybe I should say they have a harder time sticking to it. Then they get depressed and they get upset, like “This doesn’t work,” and then they go back and fall into their old eating habits and their old patterns.
Dr Stacia: The next step is let’s sit down and look at what nutrients are lacking in your system. That can be either through having blood work done or just talking to a health coach like myself.
Generally I can tell, if you come to me and you say my knees are hurting and I look at you and you’re not fit and healthy and your knees are hurting. Part of it’s your weight, but part of it is too is you could have arthritis or some sort of inflammation going, so let’s try this regime for a little while. Odds are ninety percent of the time they start feeling a difference within four or five days just because their system is like okay, I now feel better.
SBT: Are there particular brands of supplements or specific supplements that you recommend primarily?
Dr Stacia: I do. I used to do bodybuilding about eight years ago. I still do bodybuilding, I just don’t compete right now.
I studied a lot of supplements, tested them on myself and then seven or eight years into this I ran into a now-good friend of ours and he introduced me to USANA Health Sciences. They had an immediate impact on me.
My husband was asking me on day three what I was taking because I was not only bright eyed and running around but I was getting things done.
He says, “Your skin looks brighter. You look like you’re feeling better and you’re not hitting that 5:00 grouchy phase,” because I was competing at the time, my calories were low and my energy levels were low. He said, “What are you taking?” I told him, so he started taking them. As he likes to say now, he hasn’t renewed his allergy medicine in seven years and we have four cats and a dog and a kid – so he’s happy with that!
USANA nutritional supplements are pharmaceutical grade, they have been in business for twenty-two years and are completely debt free. I read all the information about it and went, “All right, this is why I like this. They’re science-based.”
I’ve just seen amazing results. My knees don’t hurt. My hands don’t cramp up like they used to. I’ve just been watching the amazing changes in people’s lives.
SBT: Sure. You can certainly speak to what you’ve seen with your own eyes, particularly with your own life. I want to make sure, what is the name of that company again?
Dr Stacia: USANA Health Sciences is based in Salt Lake City, Utah. Everything is manufactured here in the United States. I come from a quality control background with the dialysis clinics as well as an IT professional, and I love the fact that if something is out of place or something doesn’t pass quality control at USANA, it gets stamped and sent back. There are no questions about it. There’s no arguing about it. It’s just gone.
That reaches to the heart of me because I don’t want toxins in my system. I don’t want to see toxins in my mom’s system or my family, and that’s important to me.
Do not buy your supplements from Amazon. Large retailers, their job is to do large volume. USANA’s job is to provide quality supplements. I just tell people to think about that when they’re trying to cut costs. Is your body’s nutrition an area where you want to cut costs?
SBT: Didn’t I read somewhere in your materials that this company’s products are actually listed in the Physician’s’ Desk Reference?
Dr Stacia: Yes. I love to be able to walk into the doctor’s office and they’re like, “We don’t believe in supplements,” and I go, “But they’re in your PDR.” USANA has gone out of their way to make sure they are a quality brand that could be listed there.
SBT: Didn’t I read that you have a sort of a four-step process that includes 1) supplements; 2)overall nutrition; 3) level of physical activity and 4) stress management?
And you lead with the supplements because you’ve seen that that has the most immediate impact? Is that what I’m hearing you say?
Dr Stacia: I do. I tried it the other way around and people were falling by the wayside. They’re like, “This doesn’t work.” “I’m not seeing the success I want to see.” “I’m too tired to go to the gym,” or “I’m too tired to go out for my walk.”
A perfect example of this is a lady who started with me about five weeks ago. She’s very, very heavy. She desperately wants to make changes in her life because of her eleven year old daughter. She wants to make sure she can make those changes for her too.
We started out with a little mini-detox for a couple days and we started out getting her on just a customized health pack for her. Her energy levels have improved tremendously. I got a text message three days in from her that said, “Is this a placebo effect or am I really feeling this good?” I love text messages like that because I’m like yes, it’s working, so much so that she decided to stick with me.
We meet twice a week now to go for a walk on the treadmill, not a hard incline because she’s not ready for that yet. She’s sticking to it now because her energy level came up and she saw it and she said, “I will never do anything else.”
She said, “I’m going to listen to you and we’re going to go step-by-step.” That’s perfect. She’s got a budget to work on for her nutrition, so we work with that too. We work on how to make sure that she’s getting her movement in. She had a little bit of a relapse because she had a bad asthma attack a week or so ago but it didn’t scare her because she knew she could get right back on track. She had the right questions to ask her doctor to go forward with that.
That’s all I really want to do, empower people to take care of their own health and know that they can ask their doctors questions. What’s right for one person may not be right for the other person, but it’s all customizable.
SBT: There was something you just said there, you used the word “empower.” The word I was thinking was the “confidence.” Confidence is so fundamental to success in anything that we take on, and certainly something as big as making a big life change like this. We need to feel confident and strong that we’re going to be able to make this happen and that we’re going to be able to communicate what we need and get what we need in return and that we’ll have people in our lives like our doctor and somebody like you, Dr. Stacia, that’s going to take us by the hand and help us along.
I think perhaps as big as all the other things that you’ve talked about, working with you, instilling the confidence into your clients can have a tremendous impact on their success.
Dr Stacia: Yes, very much so. Again, I want them to be able to walk away and go, “Okay, I got this now and I’ll call you back later if I run into an issue.”
SBT: With that in mind, if somebody listening does want to talk to you and reach out to you and find out more about what you do and how you can help them, how can they best do that?
Dr Stacia: I am all over social media. You can search on my name, Stacia Kelly, staciakelly.com, as well Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. You can find my number there. I have people text me or email me. I try to answer everybody as quickly as possible.
SBT: The first step would be to reach out to you and ask you a question?
Dr Stacia: Yeah, probably best. Give me what your problem is that you’re trying to solve or what you’ve tried in the past. Send me a quick email via the website.
SBT: Is there any sort of a standard engagement process you use? In other words, if somebody wants to move forward and work with you what sort of process might they expect to occur from there?
Dr Stacia: We usually chat on the phone or via Skype or sometimes in person if they’re local. I send them a health assessment that they can take online. USANA provides a great little health assessment that gives them three reports.
If we’re out in person or we’re doing an event, I have little surveys. Right now we’re kicking off a Slim Fit Happy You challenge online, four weeks of coaching for free. Some people will be included in the book. We’ve got a Facebook group going so that we can communicate. I’ve had fifteen sign up in the last twelve hours.
SBT: One last thing and then I’ll let you go. I was intrigued by what you just said about the health assessment. There are three reports that are generated? Is that what you said, from the health assessment?
Dr Stacia: Yes. One that talks about what products USANA would recommend to address their issues. The second one they get lists the lifestyle challenges that they might be facing. That can be stress, environmental, work related, etc. The third one addresses health concerns and where they rate on a scale of zero to one hundred, one hundred being okay, it’s time to freak out and really get onboard and take care of things and zero being hey, you’re doing awesome.
It rates them on muscular, skeletal, weight … I think there’s twelve different physical elements it addresses. Then it gives them the opportunity to open up in that particular area and learn about why are they having these challenges and what kinds of things could the treat, not just supplement-wise, but household-wise, nutrition-wise, what can they do to make those changes.
SBT: That’s something they can get done for free by contacting you?
Dr Stacia: Yes. It’s actually on the Staciakelly.com website.
SBT: Well, Dr. Stacia, I appreciate you spending so much time with us here today. There’s certainly a lot that you can do to help people with your new book, Slim Fit Happy You, as well. Thank you so much for your time, Dr. Stacia.