We had the good fortune of connecting with Jamie Nicole and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
PLEASE TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS.
Hello! My name is Jamie Nicole and I am the Founder and CEO of The Natural Healing Coach, LLC and the voice behind Village Fitness with Jamie Nicole. Over the years, I have established myself as an expert in the health & wellness industry as a certified holistic health & certified autoimmune strategist, fitness instructor and health & wellness motivational speaker.
In 2013, I fell in love with dance fitness and the energy I felt when working out in a group atmosphere. What I was not aware of at the time was that movement was my medicine, as these classes helped to manage the symptoms of my autoimmune diseases that I had not yet been diagnosed with, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis in 2015 and Narcolepsy in 2019.
In 2016, I obtained my first fitness certification and I have obtained seven additional ones since. These certifications have allowed me to provide services for anyone on the fitness spectrum, from those who like high intensity interval training to those with mobility issues who need low impact movement that gets your heartrate up.
My passion for fitness at all levels stems from my own journey in dealing with health issues. I know that year-to-year, month-to-month, week-to-week and especially those with autoimmune disease, day-to-day, your body may not operate to the same capacity as it did the day before. I want everyone to experience the benefits of fitness as their body allows, because movement of any kind, low-intensity or high-intensity, is medicine.
In a time where self-love, body awareness, and inner healing reign supreme, my success in managing my autoimmune diseases has provided hard-won and extremely valuable first-hand knowledge on integrative wellness solutions. My experience and methodology have proven to reduce pain, improve energy, increase productivity, and manage stress.
More recently, my holistic approach has led me to coach others with autoimmune disease on the verge of losing faith in healthcare and wellness solutions. My clients have gained confidence, achieved better relationships with food, and discovered the keys that unlock their freedom from being shackled to their disease because I am able to: help them identify what might be triggering their symptoms, empower them to value their choices, teach them how to take control of their bodies and gain freedom and balance through healthy eating and active living.
If you are not familiar with autoimmune disease, autoimmune diseases are a family of more than 100 chronic, often incapacitating and, in many cases, life-threatening illnesses including Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, just to name a few.
Autoimmune disease occurs when your immune system starts attacking healthy tissue in your body instead of foreign invaders, like viruses and bacteria. The area that’s being attacked determines which disease you’re diagnosed with. For example, Multiple Sclerosis is when the body is attacking the nervous system, and Hashimoto’s is when the thyroid is being attacked.
According to the National Institutes of Health, up to 23.5 million Americans (more than seven percent of the population) suffer from an autoimmune disease—and the prevalence is rising. Autoimmune disease often takes years to be properly diagnosed and even after diagnosis, without the proper nutrition and lifestyle support, sufferers often fail to find wellness solutions that help mitigate their flares without proper support.
Everyone with autoimmune disease has different factors that triggers it, which makes it difficult to pinpoint the root cause for each person. Without knowing the root cause or causes, it makes it that much harder to live with the disease.
Because I understand from personal experience the challenges faced with autoimmune disease, I am able to guide others like me, create a customized holistic plan that unlocks their freedom from being shackled to their disease despite the associated challenges of fatigue, joint pain, concentration blocks, inflammation, hair loss, anxiety, and depression.
WE’D LOVE TO HEAR WHAT SETS YOU APART FROM OTHERS, WHAT YOU ARE MOST PROUD OF OR EXCITED ABOUT.
All coaches have different methodologies. However, what sets me apart is my signature Autoimmune Health Restoration System that is comprised of 3 distinct stages of progression:
1. Recognize, Evaluate, Survey: A signature assessment designed to recognize wellness inefficiencies that interrupts daily functionality, evaluates client wellness behaviors, and surveys the effectiveness of previous wellness efforts.
2. Train, Optimize, Regulate, & Amend: The client and I then implements a four-step holistic approach that trains the client to recognize optimal health versus deficiencies, optimizes behaviors that demonstrate positive reform, and leverages my experience in the health and wellness industry to regulate and amend lifestyle management techniques that impede optimal health (e.g., Review medical history, examine stress levels, monitor diet, evaluate fitness routines, etc.)
3. Transform, Inspire, Operate, & Nurture: Finally, I support my clients in transforming their old habits to a newly cultivated formula, which in-turn inspires my clients to operate with healthy intentions, not lose hope despite chronic health conditions, move forward, and nurture a lifestyle that produces lasting results by way of healthy eating and active living.
HOW DID YOU GET TO WHERE YOU ARE TODAY BUSINESS-WISE. WAS IT EASY? IF NOT, HOW DID YOU OVERCOME THE CHALLENGES?
My passion for Natural HEALing was born out of finally finding the keys to improve my health and wellness after years of pain, disappointment and struggle. After discovering that I had food sensitivities, Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, leaky gut and fatty liver disease, working to find answers to reverse them, and doing so successfully, I had a new found peace and joy that I didn’t have before. I was able to find the root cause of all of those illnesses, research natural ways to put them in remission, implement a plan of action and have success.
My health journey started over twenty years ago. Prior the above diagnosis, I struggled with dieting and my weight fluctuated. I was at my highest weight when pregnant with my first child. I gained a whopping 80 pounds.
As life slowed down, I began to focus on my health again. However, I wasn’t successful on diet, exercise, and supplements like I was taught to believe. At that time, I dabbled with supplements (legal ones!), fad-diets and pills for weight loss, muscle tone, and sports performance. I went through many phases of eating highly-processed, ultra-convenient and nutrient-free “foods” under false pretenses that these were healthy for me.
I was eating the right things (so I thought). I was working out daily (as we had been told to do). My calories in were less than my calories out, yet the movement on the scale was not commensurate with the effort that I was putting in. Although I was able to lose some of the weight, it was difficult balancing work, school and family and a healthy lifestyle. Lack of sleep, stress and fatigue derailed my weight loss goals and worsened my health. I wanted to GIVE UP.
I was tired, frustrated and confused. I couldn’t help but feel totally and utterly discouraged. How was I working so hard with such negligible results? This was because at the time, I didn’t have the knowledge to recognize what my body really needed. My weight gain and inability to lose weight along with my chronic fatigue were symptoms. I needed to find the root cause of my weight gain and associated fatigue.
As I transitioned from the long days and sleepless night of college-life, to the grind of corporate life as a single mom with two kids, my health continued to spiral out of control. In spite of the symptoms I was experiencing, I continued to put my health on the backburner and began to relentlessly focus on climbing the corporate ladder because my type-A personality would not allow me to do anything less.
At the time, I had managed to be promoted to upper management. I prided myself on my capacity to get the job done at work with excellence. However, over time, my ability to perform at a high level was decreasing at an increasing rate. My symptoms started to take over my life.
I had a hard time with memory recall. I would space out. It took three times as long to do things that I used to do with ease. I had become accustomed to downing coffee to help get me through projects and deadlines. However, the effectiveness of this caffeinated “drug” began to lose its effectiveness.
At night, I would have a hard time getting to sleep. My brain just wouldn’t cut off. When I finally did fall off to sleep, I would often be awakened by debilitating acid reflux that would choke me awake out of my sleep. I would then be exhausted when I woke. After multiple alarms and sometimes a few tears, I managed to gather myself enough to fake through my day yet again like everything was ok.
As would be expected, my personal life started to be affected. I didn’t have the time or the energy to go out and do things that were fun. I was working later because it took longer for me to complete tasks during the day due to the brain fog and excessive daytime sleepiness. On weekends, I would still be in catch up mode… and just exhausted. I would get cranky. I would snap at my family, my friends, or anyone that caught me at the wrong time on the wrong day.
This was one of the most frustrating periods of my life. I had hit a dead end with my attempts at getting better. I felt as though my symptoms were holding me back from achieving my dreams and aspirations. I would often mourn the person that I thought I could have been if I did not have these debilitating symptoms holding me back.
Luckily, I didn’t give up on myself. This is when I decided to shift my mindset by focusing on the root cause of my health issues instead of focusing on a symptom, weight gain.
I researched my health issues religiously on the internet and by reading books. I went to my family doctor and other specialists to address my health concerns and obtained diagnostic tests. In 2015, I received an initial diagnosis of an autoimmune thyroid diseases called Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis.
After finally getting the right diagnosis, tons of research on autoimmune disease and lots of journaling, I was able to find the root cause of my health issues and could start preparing a roadmap for my journey to better health and reversing my symptoms.
I regained control of my body by learned what it needed for it to thrive. Unfortunately, I had to do this on my own because the doctors only prescribed medication and provided no information on the diet and lifestyle changes that I needed to address my health issues and to live an optimal life.
Overcoming my own health complications associated with food sensitivities and autoimmune diseases provided me with hard-won and extremely valuable first-hand knowledge on integrative wellness solutions. In a way, I was my own first client.
Healthy eating and active living along with changes in my lifestyle, including eating organic, detoxing and proper nutrition, changed my health and my outlook on life, so much so that I started to share this information with everyone I knew. This was easy because my friends and my family saw firsthand how my lifestyle changes improved me physically and mentally, so they wanted whatever information I had that could help them on their journey as well.
Once I was able to move from surviving to thriving with autoimmune disease, I became passionate about sharing what I learned with others outside of my friend and family circle. In 2016, this passion led me to become a certified health coach and to subsequently become certified as an autoimmune coach to help others with autoimmune disease who are on the verge of losing faith in healthcare and cookie cutter wellness solutions. I know first-hand the difficulties of living with, getting diagnosed with, and then finding the root cause of autoimmune disease. But I also know the freedom felt and the burden that is lifted when you can find solutions that lead you to better health.
WHAT ARE THE LESSONS YOU’VE LEARNED ALONG THE WAY. WHAT DO YOU WANT THE WORLD TO KNOW ABOUT YOU OR YOUR BRAND AND STORY?
My goal is to share my own journey and to help make the transition to living naturally easier for you than it has been for me. My journey has been a long, iterative and incremental process which continues to evolve every single day. I’ve traveled down an educational and experimental path to make some sense of the overwhelming amount of information available. Before I had the knowledge that I have now, I was easily influenced by what others deemed as “healthy”.
I have found that the phrase “being healthy” means something different to everyone. To me, being healthy means that my body, mind and spirit are all connected and functioning to the best of their ability. I currently strive for excellence and balance in all areas of my life including my mental health, career, relationships, nutrition, emotions, and spirituality. My purpose is to help others omit the overwhelm and frustration that is preventing them from moving from surviving to thriving by finding what healthy means to them and is to them.
I’m not a Health Coach because I have discovered the “perfect” diet or fitness routine. There is no perfect!! We often set ourselves up for failure by expecting unrealistic results. I’m very much a work in progress and part of my journey has been learning to accept and embrace this process.
It brings me joy to share with others what I’ve learned on my journey and to be a cheerleader for those looking to better and lengthen their lives, improve their physique, and decrease their risk of illness through their own lifestyle and food choices. If done in a sustainable and practical way, these choices will lead to long-lasting, healthy habits for life.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Well, most of my fun time is either at home (I am an introverted extrovert) or at the gym, but that would be out of the question. However, I love concerts, outdoor activities, food and trying new things. So I would likely take them to The Post, which is Houston’s new hub for culture and events. It always has something going on and lots of food options. I love good concert, so if there was not a major one in town that weekend, we would catch some live music and drinks downtown and also walk the streets to see the attractions. Then I thing a trip to the food truck park would cap off the night quite well.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
First and foremost, I would like to Shoutout my dad, James Martin. It is because of his unconditional love, support, understanding and patience that I have been able to press towards my goals. From helping with my kids, helping me deal with my health issues when I was trying to get a diagnosis, and being a listening ear when I needed it, he is always there.
In addition, I want to send a special Shoutout to my friend, Candace Allan. I met her at time on my journey where I was hopeless, helpless and wanted to give up. At that point, I had prayed so much for deliverance from my afflictions with no relief. I felt that my prayers were falling on deaf ears. Candace interceded for me when I wanted to give up and continued to believe in me and my goals when I sometimes didn’t believe in myself. I am not sure I would be where I am today if God hadn’t sent her when He did.