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An Apple a Day – 5 Questions for Jacqui Justice, NY Health and Wellness Nutrition Director

Jacqui Justice is a leading expert in Weight Loss Resistance, Digestive Wellness and Menopause Management, bringing over 20 years of experience to NY Health and Wellness.

She holds an M.S. and C.N.S. in Clinical Nutrition, and a certification in Functional Clinical Nutrition. Named one of the top nutritionists in the New York area, Jacqui’s focus is on identifying her clients’ underlying factors and then designing a customized holistic plan to help them reach and maintain their wellness goals.

Jacqui has been featured in The New York Times, Prevention, Redbook, Woman’s Day, Organic Times, Westchester Magazine, and Serendipity Magazine, and has been featured on Daytime TV, Wake Up With Taylor (Sirius), and Debbie Nigro Show (WGCH Radio).

Jacqui co-hosts her own radio show – It’s Not Your Fault, It’s Your Hormones (WVOX Radio).

And now she answers NewsWhistle’s  “An Apple A Day,” five questions that focus on health and wellness.

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jacqui

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Name: Jacqui Justice (pictured above)

Age (if you want to give it up): 56

Occupation/Expertise: NY Health and Wellness Nutrition Director

Hometown: Yonkers, NY

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1. What book should every one of your patients read? Why?

Lick The Sugar Habit by Nancy Appleton – an oldie but goodie.  Overconsumption of sugar is at the core of every chronic health issue today.  I remember reading this book many many years ago and actually being quite horrified as I was a sugar-aholic myself.  Eliminating refined and processed sugar is probably the single most important thing we can all do to improve our wellness and prevent disease.  Dr. Appleton brings this subject to light in a very easy to understand manner – one that motivates the reader to follow her lead.

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2. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever heard? And what advice do you always give your patients? 

The 80/20 Rule.  When I first started my practice I use to encourage my clients to be all in – 100% which proved to be unrealistic for most (even myself).  I found that giving them a little wiggle room (20%) enables them to stay on their plans without feeling deprived and as a result they are more likely to achieve and maintain their weight loss/wellness goals.

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3. Are you staying healthy? If so, how do you take care of yourself? If not, what will you be doing to get back on track? 

Yes – at 56 I feel better than ever (most days).  The only time I don’t feel my best is when I don’t get enough sleep.  What’s my secret?  I rarely eat refined sugars, gluten and GMO (genetically modified organisms) foods.  My diet is made up mostly of lean, clean protein, veggies, good fats and a moderate amount of high-fiber fruit.  I work hard to try and drink enough water – I start every day with a “shower on the inside” – by drinking 8-10 oz. of water as soon as I get up.  I also have a green drink at least once a day – gives me a ton of energy and floods my body with nutrients in a very absorbable way.  Last but not least I keep my gut healthy (very very important) by taking probiotics every day and do a formal liver detox at least once/year.

One of the other things I recommend to my clients who want to drink alcohol is to “Pregame with Protein” beforehand.  So before they have that cocktail or glass of wine, they should eat a small amount of protein like a hard boiled egg, 1-2 ounces of chicken or turkey or a handful of almonds.

Doing this helps to keep their blood sugar from spiking which then causes an insulin surge.  Insulin is a fat storage hormone.  Not what we want when we are trying to lose weight and burn body fat.

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4. Would you recommend any of the following to your patients? Why or why not?  

a.   Coffee? 

I wouldn’t recommend it if someone wasn’t already drinking it.  If they are – I do recommend cutting down to 1-2 cups/day and only drinking organic coffee.

b.   Vodka? 

Again – if they drink alcohol I feel its the lesser evil compared to most others from a sugar standpoint.  My favorite alcoholic beverage is Crop Organic Meyer Lemon or Cucumber Vodka and mineral water with a big slice of orange – yum!

c.    Chocolate? 

Dark, high cocoa count chocolate is a good low-sugar treat with some nice antioxidants.  Again – moderation is the key.

d.   Eggs?

Absolutely!  I recommend the whole egg as opposed to just the whites.  Hard boiled eggs are such a great protein-rich portable snack.

e.    Cheese? 

Not really.  Look – we all love cheese and it’s such an easy form of protein but most of us don’t do well with it so I don’t tend to recommend it.  Most of my clients do better going dairy free.

f.      An Apple A Day?

YES!!  They are actually a super food – rich in antioxidants and fiber and low in calories.  They are heart protective and immune boosting as well – not to mention delish!!!  A great snack I recommend to my clients is a green apple (it’s lower in sugar) with almond butter as a snack.

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5. What trend or latest discovery in medicine/science fascinates you? 

I’m very interested in the study of the MTHFR Gene mutation because of it’s connection with mental illness, addictions, cancer and cardiovascular disease related deaths.  I recommend testing for it – it’s simple to do and life saving!

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BONUS QUESTION: What else about you or your field would you like to add, promote, or discuss? 

I specialize in the area of weight loss resistance.  Most of my clients are perimenopausal/menopausal women who are experiencing stubborn hormonal weight gain, low-energy and belly fat/bloat.  My program – The B3H+ – is extremely foundational, functional and effective in decreasing these symptoms so that woman not only can lose weight but get back to who they were before hormonal havoc took over.

This program is available at NY Health and Wellness Centers (please see website for locations – https://nyhealthandwellness.com), and will soon be available online as well.

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Lead-In Image Courtesy of Yellowj / Shutterstock.com; Portrait Courtesy of Jacqui Justice