Wellness Path

Allison Porter with New Leaf Nutrition offers natural healing

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ALLISON PORTER is the first to admit she has a hard time fitting into boxes other people build—professionally speaking that is. She is at her best when she has the freedom to share her unique gifts without restriction. Luckily, she is able to do just that. She started her own business, New Leaf Nutrition, which offers nutrition counseling, yoga classes, and wellness coaching.

She is also the first to admit that she has “a quirky personality and a unique skill set that certain people are drawn to because my energy resonates with them,” she says.

Porter may not be your typical clinical registered dietitian but her goals as a dietitian are still to offer the highest quality wellness services to her clients.

“I’m an independent thinker,” Porter says. “I started New Leaf because there isn’t anyone else offering wellness services in the way that I feel called to do.”

Porter has been interested in natural healing and preventative medicine since she was a teenager. Growing up, she always thought she would end up working in the film industry. Both her parents were actors, and she was involved in theater and film her whole life. However, experiencing health problems in high school and seeing a dietitian herself, became a critical moment for her.

She wouldn’t know it then, but that situation would lead to her future career.  “It wasn’t until college that I learned I had an aptitude for science,” she says. “I’d always been encouraged in the arts.” It never occurred to her that she could work in healthcare.

“The dietitian helped me understand the importance of certain nutrients,” Porter says. “It would be several years before I decided to formally study nutrition. The experience set me on a path of paying attention to how the foods I ate affected my wellbeing.”

The first step in Porter’s approach with her clients is an introductory meeting.

“I start off finding out what a potential client wants to achieve and what I have to offer,” she says. She knows she may not be the right dietitian for everyone and is okay with that. “I don’t want to convince people to sign up with me if we’re not a good match.”

Most of her clients are struggling with mental health concerns such as disordered eating, addiction, autism, ADHD or gut trauma. “I’m an expert in my area, not a generalist.”

Porter points out that she is a behavioral health nutrition specialist of which there are not many around. She also accepts clients with autoimmunity, which has a huge nutrition component that the scientific community is unraveling so much about. One of her primary areas of study right now is “the gut/brain axis.”

Since there a number of dietitians and wellness coaches out there, how is New Leaf different?

“It’s me just me doing me,” she says. “While I do have a formal education in nutrition which qualifies me to do this work, I incorporate a myriad of other healing modalities and personal experiences. I infuse my practice with a pizazz you won’t find in your run-of-the-mill dietetics practice.”

To view more of photographer Terah Wilson’s work, go to terahwilson.com.

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Categories: Health