“You aren't just what you eat. You are
what your body can do with what you eat.”
Hello, I’m Andrea Nakayama, and I’m a Functional Nutritionist, Educator and Speaker practicing Whole-Foods Nutrition to people around the globe from my home in Portland, Oregon.
Like many of you, my road to understanding the power that nutritional knowledge can bring to our lives began with a family health crisis. In April of 2000, my husband was diagnosed with a fatal brain tumor. He was told he had only six months to live. I was seven weeks pregnant with our son Gilbert at the time of his diagnosis.
My husband lived two and a half years after that grave diagnosis, long enough to share the beginnings of our son’s life. During his illness I discovered that food was not just something that I enjoyed exploring at the local farmer’s market, or preparing for family and friends, but that it also held tremendous curative properties. This empowered me to make incremental dietary changes and to further explore how I could use food to nurture my family – my afflicted husband, my growing baby and myself – each and every day.
Some time after my husband’s death I experienced what Matthew Sanford, a paraplegic yogi, describes as “Post Traumatic Growth”. I was determined to understand the mechanisms that feed cancer growth, to understand how and why the body reacts as it does, and to discern the aptitude that we have to unlock our healing potential using the keys that nutrition can provide.
In 2006, I began my journey to understanding food and nutrition, taking courses in Anatomy and Physiology, Chemistry and Organic Chemistry, Psychology and Nutrition. I attended Bauman College, and became a certified Nutrition Educator (CNE), followed by a program at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition (IIN), where I became a Certified Holistic Health Coach (CHHC). I then went back to Bauman, and earned a degree as a Certified Nutrition Counselor (CNC). Today, I’m working towards a Masters of Science in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine (MSHNFM) through the University of Western States, and supplement my knowledge through the Integrative Health Symposium, the Institute of Functional Medicine, and many seminars conducted by the renowned Dr. Kharrazian among others.
I’m passionate not only about continuing my own education so that I can put more of the puzzle pieces of health together, but also about educating my clients and the Replenish nutrition team so that so we become agents of change, able to take ownership of our own health. I simplify physiology so that it’s understandable for each and every one of us. This way it becomes a motivating tool for understanding why we may need to make particular dietary changes to meet our goals.
My personal and educational experience has led me to believe in three core principles: that each person has the unique capability to heal and thrive, that a person cannot heal without examining why they’re hurting, and that it’s important to always ask yourself “What’s going on in there?”
I put these beliefs into practice in both my own and my family’s life, as well as in the lives of the clients and staff that I work with at Replenish. At Replenish we counsel others to foster the changes that stimulate rejuvenation. Using food and supplemental therapies, we work from the core of the body to heal the gut, balance hormones, and support the detoxification of organs.Our intent is to educate about the physiological imbalances that may cause undesirable symptoms, while also teaching about the empowering aspects of food for healing. We believe that the body yearns to heal itself, and by using comprehensive nutrition therapy, we hope to help you uncover your own inner resources.
My interest in sharing what I’ve learned has culminated in the creation of not only Replenish, but also our online store, Replenish Me, and my training for health professionals, Holistic Nutrition Lab, a comprehensive on-line curriculum for holistic practitioners including digestive, immune, urinary, endocrine, nervous and reproductive intensives. In this program, hundreds of holistic health practitioners join together virtually to gain a deeper understanding of the physiology behind their work and the tools with which to deliver them to their clients.
Andrea Nakayama has been featured in Martha Stewart’s Whole Living magazine, as well as other publications and serves as the in-house Nutrition Expert for several organizations. See where else she’s speaking and teaching here.