I’m Ildelisa Cartagena, Certified Holistic Health Practitioner and Level II Reiki Practitioner in southern California.
I graduated the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in May of 2013, and received my certification by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners shortly after.
While attending the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, I studied over 100 dietary theories, and received knowledge, inspiration, and motivation by some of the world’s top health & wellness experts such as Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Bernie Siegel, Dr. John Douillard, David “Avocado” Wolfe, Deepak Chopra, Gabrielle Bernstein, and Julia Cameron just to name an amazing few.
For me, becoming healthy had nothing to do with losing weight or improving how I look on the outside. Becoming healthy had EVERYTHING to do with improving how I felt on the inside.
Yes, I was overweight and super unhealthy in every way possible, but I was completely oblivious to that fact. I was more focused on feeding my emotions by drowning them in alcohol, self medicating through prescription drugs or illegal drugs, and filling up my time with unhealthy relationships rather than facing my internal emotions head on. Although I have practiced a vegetarian lifestyle for most of the last 15+ years of my life, I was still super overweight aka “junk food vegetarian”. One who had also developed hypothyroid and suffered from extremely painful periods, ovarian tumors, insane acne, beginning signs of rheumatoid arthritis, and intestinal problems that were very similar to IBS.
It took all of my teenage years and most of my twenties to finally decide, “ENOUGH!”
While struggling to leave an abusive and toxic relationship, I suddenly had to deal with abruptly losing my Dad to heart failure. Filled with guilt, anger, and confusion I quickly spiraled out of control, fell into the deepest depression I had ever experienced, and hit a total rock bottom…one that nearly cost me my life. Left with only two options and Angels on my side, I quickly made the commitment to simply start respecting, nurturing, and loving myself from the inside out. I made Kale, Meditation, and much needed mental silence my life!
Slowly and consistently eating healthier combined with moving my body, and allowing the opportunity to view every aspect of life from a new perspective has gradually transformed me into the person I am and the life I live today.
Losing weight while gaining self-esteem was an organic process; which included dropping nearly 13 pant sizes!!! A complete bonus due to shining light on how I had been living my life, and actually making the changes I needed to not only survive, but thrive. As each day passes, I grow into a healthier version of me ~ mentally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
People who have known me for years now make constant mention of my exterior changes and physical appearance, but the most significant transformation can’t be seen, as it lies within me. Learning to be happy and LOVE myself no matter what, are two of the most nutritious offerings I could have ever given myself.
The daily practice to remain committed to leading a healthier life and to remain in complete openness to learn beyond what I know today plays a big role, along with meditation, yoga, tai chi, standing on my head to gain new perspective, having fun with different workout routines, bouncing around on an exercise ball – even holding a plank for 5 minutes or doing an insane number of squats are some of what I do to keep my heartrate pumping and my body moving. Of course offering my body the most nutritious foods available as I joyfully experiment with recipes that range from allergen free, gluten free, and always vegan.
I like to focus on whole foods; you know that come from the ground and not in some fancy box or adorable packaging. I cook a lot and just like most folks, I am pretty busy so I’ve mastered the art of bulk cooking which allows for delicious meals in less than 20 minutes and easy next day meal preps!
With all this learning and growing I’ve been able to completely heal my body from the inside out. I have zero signs of any kind of mass growing on my ovaries or uterus lining, periods arrive and I don’t notice, thyroid is in proper function, no signs of IBS, my skin is FINALLY under control, and my joints are feeling great! Everything is in proper working order and when it isn’t, I can easily pinpoint whether it was the refined sugar, gluten, nuts, or even dairy if it somehow sneaked into my vegan eats. It feels pretty good to have my health under MY control, holistically!
Every day requires my full attention and my full commitment to living the healthiest and happiest life possible. We are all constantly learning and growing. Our journey never ends even when it appears that way, another is always beginning.
Everything In Life Grows… This I know to be true.
Thank You for taking the time to learn just a bit about me, my journey, and how I came to be the Practitioner before you today!
Contact Me to Schedule your FREE Consultation!