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Leading by Example: The Holistic Pioneers I Admire Most

As a lifelong learner, there are many people whose work I admire and from whom I have learned a great deal. I’ll be highlighting a few of them here.

Andrea Beaman

Andrea Beaman is a natural foods chef, holistic health coach, and author.  Her cookbooks and health programs promote whole foods-based nutrition. She has won awards as a health educator and chef and was named one of the Top Ten Complementary Healthcare Educators in 2013.

Andrea was one of the instructors for the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, where I obtained my holistic health coach certificate. Her down to earth style really resonates with me. Follow her and you will find a variety of delicious recipes she provides for free. You can find her on LinkedIn or at her website . Here’s an article she wrote that I swear she wrote just for me. Among other things, my body is trying to kill my thyroid.

Mark Hyman, MD

Mark Hyman, MD is an internationally recognized leader in functional medicine and nutrition. He is the founder and director of the UltraWellness Center. Dr. Hyman has dedicated his medical career to identifying and addressing the root causes of chronic health conditions. He advocates an integrative approach to health that focuses on customized nutrition, lifestyle changes, and balancing the mind-body connection.

Dr. Hyman is a New York Times best-selling author of over a dozen books on health and nutrition. He also serves as the Head of Strategy and Innovation of the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine.

I appreciate Dr. Hyman’s  functional approach to medicine. He firmly believes in Hippocrates’ theory that ‘food is medicine’. Find him on LinkedIn or you can listen to his podcast.

Kris Carr

Kris Carr is a prominent wellness activist, New York Times best-selling author, and motivational speaker. In 2003, she was diagnosed with a rare, inoperable and incurable cancer at age 31 and given only ten years to live. Kris embraced a natural foods diet and healthy lifestyle to promote her healing. Now she helps people empower themselves to take control of their health journey through her inspirational books including Crazy Sexy Diet and Crazy Sexy Juices.

Her story of overcoming enormous odds and not only surviving, but thriving really speaks to me. As a cancer survivor, knowing stories such as the Kris’ provides hope for a vibrant future, even after a devastating diagnosis. Here is her blog post celebrating life after her diagnosis.

Mel Robbins

Mel Robbins is a motivational speaker, best-selling author, and life strategist. She became known for her books The 5 Second Rule and Stop Saying You’re Fine, which provide tools for personal growth and change.

Mel frequently appears as a business and life expert on major media outlets. She founded The Mel Robbins Companies, which includes corporate training programs, motivational speeches, and multi-media content focused on productivity, leadership, and unlocking potential.

Mel’s empowering TEDx Talk “How to Stop Screwing Yourself Over” has over 50 million views. Through her inspirational speaking engagements, books, media appearances, and training programs, Mel Robbins empowers people to take control of their lives and overcome self-doubt.

I love Mel’s earthy no BS style of presenting herself. She is very uplifting and funny. Her podcast is full of great tips for a fulfilling life.

Gabby Bernstein

Gabby Bernstein is a best-selling author, speaker, and meditation teacher, helping people  to live healthier and happier lives. She overcame addiction early in life and now shares her journey through her many inspirational books.  Gabby hosts her Dear Gabby podcast, national speaking events and workshops on cultivating a positive mindset. She is the fouder of, a digital platform for women to grow spiritually and professionally. With her authentic style and motivating spirit, Gabby Bernstein inspires people to embrace their true selves and live with purpose.

I really like Gabby’s meditations and spiritual approach to what she brings to the world.

Are there people like these that you admire?

There are certain people who, through their work, wisdom, and example, have profoundly shaped my outlook and path—both personally and professionally. In this post, I want to celebrate and express my gratitude for some of the (s)heroes who inspire me daily. From pioneering chef Andrea Beaman, who opened my eyes to the power of real food as medicine, to the perpetually positive Kris Carr, whose triumph over cancer motivated my own wellness journey, each has impacted me in meaningful ways.

Likewise, the empowering messages of Mel Robbins and Gabby Bernstein serve as guiding lights when self-doubt creeps in. My hope is that by honoring my influences in this post, I can highlight what I most appreciate about their contributions while encouraging others to reflect on those who spur their own growth. More than anything, I am thankful for the shoulders I stand on and want to recognize those who so generously share their gifts to lift others higher.

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  1. Vicki D on January 3, 2024 at 11:04 pm

    I started following Mel Robbins recently and find her very uplifting and motivating!

    • Karen Admin on January 4, 2024 at 8:30 am

      Don’t you just lover her down to earth outlook and approach to everything?

  2. Melissa Brown on January 4, 2024 at 12:32 pm

    This is a great list here of people doing great things. Kris Carr and Mel Robbins are 2 of my favs. The 5 Second Rule is golden!

    • Karen Admin on January 4, 2024 at 9:39 pm

      I agree Melissa…I think the 5 second rule is genius.

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