My Experience At The Institute for Integrative Nutrition
I truly believe that good health begins with what you put into your body. Nutrition + pure ingredients have always been the cornerstone of Purely Elizabeth.
You may know that I am a certified Holistic Nutrition Counselor (hence the passion for nutrition). Being a certified health coach is something I am very proud of and that has shaped my career. In fact it was while I was in school receiving that certification that I dreamt up the idea of starting Purely Elizabeth!
I get questions all of the time about my education and where I went, would I recommend it, etc.– So I thought I’d sit down with you all to chat about Institute for Integrative Nutrition — where I went to school!
Institute for Integrative Nutrition, IIN for short, is one of the largest nutrition schools in the world, with online learning opportunities. It was founded in 1992 by Joshua Rosenthal in NYC. IIN started with a small group of students in a rented kitchen and has grown to over 100,000 students and graduates from over 155 countries.
What is a Health Coach?
A Health Coach is a supportive mentor and wellness authority who works with clients to help them feel their best through food and lifestyle changes. Instead of prescribing one diet or way of exercising, Health Coaches tailor individualized wellness programs to meet their clients’ needs.
What is the Curriculum Like?
Supporting and exploring over 100 dietary theories, the IIN Digital Classroom offers videos, live online classes, group discussions and written assignments. Courses are offered by many leading physicians, researchers, doctors and nutrition experts with Visiting Teachers as well.
- IIN takes a holistic, no-one-size-fits-all approach to nutrition and wellness: you'll explore more than 100 dietary theories such as plant-based eating, Ayurveda, and raw foods, plus learn the life-coaching and behavior-change skills needed to become a successful Health Coach, empowering clients in your coaching sessions to reach their health goals.
- They teach you that achieving optimal health is not just about the food on your plate: It's also about how you nourish yourself through your relationships, spirituality, career, environment, and much more. This is the true IIN difference, giving you the confidence you need to go out into the world and change lives. Whatever your professional interests or personal goals, get an unparalleled education that will transform the health and lives of others, as well as your own.
My Personal Experience
Before attending IIN, I was working in sales and marketing for a handbag company in NYC. I was unhappy at my job and feeling like my work wasn’t very meaningful or aligned with my values and interests. I wanted to find a career that I was passionate about.
I started getting into triathlons and gaining a greater interest in health and wellness. I began searching for something else that could align with these interests, though had absolutely no idea what that “else” was until I stumbled up the IIN website. I answered a series of questions to see if the program was a good fit. I answered all the questions yes, and immediately picked up the phone and enrolled that day.
After enrolling at IIN, I gained the confidence to go after what I want in life. My diet improved and I felt more balanced and energetic. I loved learning all the different dietary theories and approaches to health. But IIN is much more then that! It gave me a place to grow and challenge myself in so many ways. I learned to feel the fear and do it anyway, that I can accomplish anything I put my mind to.
When Did The Idea of PE Come Up?
One day I was in Joshua Rosenthal’s class and he asked us to describe our “unpredictable future.” I wrote down on my notebook, “Start a natural foods company.” A few months later in 2009 my unpredictable future became a reality, and I started Purely Elizabeth, which at the time was a line of muffin and pancake mixes.
Dr. Mark Hyman was definitely one of my favorite teachers. He really connected the dots between what you eat and how you feel, especially focusing on how a gluten-free diet can have such a profound effect on your health and wellbeing.
So would I recommend IIN?
YES! I loved the variety of speakers and dietary theories which allow you to think for yourself and figure out what resonates with you most. The support of the community is incredible and so inspiring to hear what other students are accomplishing. Plus, it is amazing to be surrounded by so many like minded individuals. Without the support of the IIN community, I don’t think I would be able to push forward past my limits.
My advice for any new entrepreneurs out there or those interested in nutrition school: Get clear on what you want to do and go for it. There will be a lot of people trying to discourage you from taking a risk, but getting out of your comfort zone is where all good things happen!