Claudia KaiserHi, I am Claudia, founder & owner of Metabolance.
I am 34 years young and passionate about the mind-body-connection, Real Food and a healthy lifestyle in general. I believe that even though "our gun" might be pre-loaded with certain genes, it is our lifestyle that pulls "the trigger" eventually - or not. We are responsible for our own fate and (mental & physical) health.
This is why - after many years working for a big international company - I founded Metabolance in 2012. I had the desire to work in something that really represented me, my philosophy and my values. I wanted to achieve a maximum level of integrity between myself and my work - something that I did not enjoy in my former occupations. I also wanted to be my own boss and enjoy the flexibility of an entrepreneur.
Metabolance is the result of my personal development process and the learnings I have been blessed to make over the years. Just as myself, Metabolance is not static, but in continuous movement, always willing to adjust to new findings and ideas I may learn about in the future, so that my company always reflects what I firmly believe to be the best for you & the planet.
- 2016: Certified Eating Psychology Coach
- 2012: Certified Healthexcel Metabolic Typing Advisor
- 2011-2012: Certified Nutrition Counselor
- 2009-2010: Certificate in Traditional Chinese Medicine (Basics)
- 2004-2005: MBA (Master of Business Administration) at Instituto de Empresa, Madrid
- 2001-2004: Bachelor in Business Administration
- 2012-today: Business Owner Metabolance
- 2008-2011: Product Manager Companion Animal Products at Bayer Animal Health Benelux
- 2006-2007: Sales & Marketing Companion Animal Products at Bayer Animal Health Spain
- 2001-2004: Trainee ?Marketing and International Business Studies? at Bayer
"Ex-Pharma" now into "Organic"?
Might be surprising, but yes, it is true. I started to work at Bayer right after school because they offered a great opportunity to combine studies of Business Administration with practical ?on-the-job? training plus the chance to participate in a MBA Program abroad.
Over the years, I adapted a more and more ecological & holistic attitude and lifestyle, which less and less fit my company?s basic assumptions. I no longer agreed that:
- A disease is an enemy that needs to be fought by taking drugs or undergoing surgery.
- The only way to feed the world is by growing more (of the same) food on less surface relying on GMOs and pesticides to make plants stronger and ?protect? them from diseases/pests.
I felt in growing conflict spending my time and energy in a company, whose basic assumptions I did no longer share, so it was only a question of time to leave.
I don?t regret having gone through the ?pharma? experience though. On the one hand, nothing is only ?black? or ?white?. Most of the people I met in those >10 years were "good" people with very noble motivations, e.g. helping others to prevent or cure diseases or solving problems such as the ?how to feed a world of 9 billions? question. We just disagree on how this should be achieved... On the other hand, the early responsibilities I was granted in my jobs and especially the chance to live and work abroad have made me learn and develop a lot on a professional and personal level. It all contributed to make me the person I am today.
Claudia's Personal Food Story
My Personal Food Story is one of many ups and downs, hard learnings, personal "experiments" and eventually a complete "paradigm shift".
I share this story with you so that you know who you deal with: A human being, who has made mistakes, who is not "perfect", but whose strength is the adaptability to new findings in combination with a strong sense of responsibility to provide YOU with the best possible advice (and to live up to it myself!). I want to relate to you by sharing my personal experience rather than only theoretical knowledge.
I grew up with the typical industrialized Western diet of the 80's, which ? looking back ? definitely was not the healthiest one, containing quite some sugar and refined products.
In my late teens, I started to care about food, not because of "health", but because of (completely unnecessary) body weight concerns... I became anorexic - eating less and less while continuing my very intensive exercise program as a middle and long distance runner. In the beginning I still ate no matter what, just making sure to not ingest too many calories (lowering the threshold every now and then). But after a while I realized that I could eat much more (belly-filling) quantity by choosing ?healthy? food: Lots of fruits & vegetables, whole grains, muesli and whole bread, low fat dairy, an occasional egg, very little fish or chicken, almost no red meat and overall (very) low fat. At that time all my food was still conventional, including processed foods (e.g. breakfast cereals), and products containing artificial sweeteners, colorants and additives (e.g. low fat fruit yogurts).
Fortunately I realized quite quickly that I was on a "wrong" path, but still it took me years to recover physically and psychologically.In fact, it wasn't before I learned to truly love myself, to connect with my intuition, to listen to and trust my inner voice, to face my fears, to actually embrace my eating disorder as my best friend, and most importantly, to trust in life and that everything happens for a reason and is always in my best interest, that true healing could begin.... but first things first.
In the years 2002-2006 I started to care more and more about ?organic ?. Back then, the most convenient option for me was the growing offer of organics in the supermarkets and I didn?t see anything wrong with it. When I moved to Spain I experimented with a weekly vegetable and fruit box for a while.
In 2009 I studied a course in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) just for the fun of it. This is when I first got introduced to the idea of ?Nutrition Types? and the ?Yin? or ?Yang? influence of food. Because of my individual constitution, I thought it was a good idea to cut down on dairy (the only animal protein I was eating regularly). I discovered vegetarian alternatives to dairy (such as soy or rice milk) and told everybody how bad it was to eat a lot of meat, eggs, dairy and saturated fat in general ? for health, but also for the animals and the planet. Slowly my anorexia was turning into orthorexia - I was eating enough and no longer starving myself, but I was now demonizing whole food groups for their supposedly negative impact on health and environment.
At some point in 2011, a blood examination revealed that despite my ?healthy? diet I was extremely short on vitamin B12 and vitamin D3 and that my cholesterol was up (although I was not eating any of the foods typically associated with high cholesterol - today I know that it was due to the wrong fats, too many carbs and a struggeling thyroid). My very first Metabolic Screening confirmed the bad state of my cellular metabolism and my huge deficiency of nutrients in general. Instead of doubting my basic assumptions of a healthy nutrition, I blamed it all on ?the pill? I was taking at that time (which definitely DID play a roll) and changed my mind about supplementation (which before I had believed to be unnecessary). The supplements helped me improve my Metabolic Screening results indeed, but still not all of them were ?in the green area?.
In 2011/2012 I studied to become a ?Nutrition Counselor ?. In this course we were still taught the standard food pyramid as THE healthy nutrition for each and every person. By that time I already didn't believe in this (and many other "scientific" concepts) anymore.
When eventually I learned about Metabolic Typing, the idea of biochemical individuality fascinated me immediately because it just made so much sense that we should all have different dietary needs and that there was in fact no one-size-fits-all. The first thing to do was to take the Metabolic Typing Test myself. I had a BIG conflict, when I was diagnosed as a Fast Oxidizer (Protein Type) and learned that in order to be in balance, about 70% of my calories should come from proteins & fat (especially from animals) and only 30% from carbohydrates. At that time I was eating about 70% carbohydrates, 20% fat and hardly 10% protein (mostly from plants). However, I was open-minded enough to try the experiment on myself. Immediately after re-incorporating meat and animal fats into my diet, I noticed important changes in my well-being:
- I had much more energy.
- I did no longer have cold hands and feet all the time.
- My digestive problems diminished significantly.
- My Metabolic Screening results increased significantly and were finally in the green area.
- I slept much better.
- My skin, hair & nails looked a lot stronger & healthier.
In short: Everything told me, that eating more protein (meat, fish, chicken, dairy, eggs) & fat was right for ME at that point in time. I even started liking it again! Something could thus not be true about my previous theories. It wouldn?t make sense that it should be ?better? for me to live without something that my body obviously needed so much to be in balance. This realization triggered a whole lot of happenings:
- I found a lot of prestigious literature supporting the idea that eating meat, eggs, raw dairy and saturated fat is natural and actually healthy (e.g. Nourishing Traditions, Weston Price...).
- I started looking for REALLY ethical providers of organic meat because IF I needed to eat it, then I definitely did not want the one that was ethically unacceptable and would make me sick on top. I wanted to show the animals the respect and gratitude they deserve to give their lives for the sake of my inner balance and well-being. I could not be sure to find that kind of meat in the supermarket ? not even if it claimed to be ?organic?. I had learned that supermarkets per definition ? and with very few exceptions ? produce in and for the masses. Even organic produce for masses is produced with the same profits in mind as conventional produce, often in the same fabrics by the same companies.
- I decided that I also wanted to share the results of my research with my clients. I could not imagine myself doing Nutrition Coaching without also providing solutions for REALLY ethical, organic produce, especially for animal produce.
So I completely switched my diet from an almost vegan one to a diet heavy in animal proteins and fats. And with that, I completely switched my perspective on food from one of "food as the enemy" to "food as the source of life". For the first time it was no longer about calories or fat content - and I was able to stop counting those without even trying. The only thing that mattered to me was that I truly nourished my body. For the first time, I really cared about myself and my well-being and it felt like such a relief!
As everything is connected, rebalancing my body, also triggered rebalancing all the other levels. Sometimes this process of change has been painfull as it required me to let go of people, situations, work or things that were no longer "right" for me. It definitely required and still requires a lot of courage . However, it is also so rewarding. With every step I felt much closer to the "real me" than ever before. Things just seemed to "fall in place" at the right moment, in the right place, which made me feel carried and supported by the Universe and gave me faith that I was indeed on the right path.
It is like a domino effect that Metabolic Typing triggered in me. I see this effect re-produced in the clients I am working with. It will also happen for you, if you are ready and willing to let it happen. I will be happy to support you on this journey as much as I can!
After a year or two, my body & mind were recovered that much that my Metabolic Type changed from my "functional" Fast Oxidizer type to Mixed Type. So my diet could again comprise somewhat more grains (well-prepared ;)), but still a lot of fat and some protein (fish, chicken, red meat, cheese, eggs, legumes, nuts...and my favourite: home-made bone broth) with EVERY meal. I want to stress that while I did again favor some food categories over others during this process (interestingly exactly those that before I had so eagerly avoided), this can be a necessary thing to do to heal the body (and mind). Most of the times this is only a temporary thing, but depending on your individual situation and biochemistry, can also be useful in the long-term.
That being said, I never followed my plan to the letter and don't think it is necessary for most people (except for cases of severe intolerances). I can be quite disciplined, but I strongly dislike any kind of rigid system that forbids me to eat certain foods - probably because I have a tendency to go to extremes. I still need the freedom to at least be able to have a bite or sip of everything. I did try to go 100% gluten-free, lactose-free, egg-free - and even completely grain and legume-free (paleo) - mainly because most experts (especially in the US) demonize those food-groups and it's easy to get infected by their scary arguments (at times, I noticed myself develop the same kind of obsession and "fear" of those foods as I had felt before for animal foods). Anyways, I didn't succeed for very long. I personally didn't feel that those foods really affected my well-being - or if they did then actually to the better (which makes sense being a mixed-type combined with sympathetic). I actually felt worst when only eating veggies, meat and fat (constant gas and hungry), so I decided to trust my own experience and that I could have grains, legumes, cheese and even some gluten again. I still mostly avoid wheat, and use lots of gluten-free grains, but I don't stress about a slice of spelt, rye or kamut bread per day and even some piece of bread (even white wheat bread) in the restaurant occasionally. Given my history with anorexia, this is definitely a good success.
Apart from Metabolic Typing and the concept of biochemical individuality, that finally allowed me to give my body the right fuels and tools that it needed to rebalance itself (from the gut to the brain), there was another major concept that changed my life - not only on a physical level, but also on the emotional, mental, energetic & spiritual level. and paved my way to true healing, and this was Mind-Body-Nutrition - concretely two main ideas:
- the understanding that the way we eat is the way we do life and that in order to resolve our issues with food and body we need to dig deeper.
- the idea that thoughts and feelings are as powerful on our metabolism as is food - and the notion that negative thoughts, fear, guilt and constant worry could actually be considered like junk food
It has happened and still happens sometimes that I obsess too much about some of my "food rules", trying to perfectionate my (and my partner's diet), which is the only real source of conflict in our relationship. Especially when out of my usual surroundings, e.g. on holidays or when invited, where things are less "secure", I can start to stress about food and start to choose more with my head than my heart. Today, the biggest offenders for me are sugar, vegetable oils (which every restaurant uses for cooking), and pasteurized dairy. Funnily I never worried about those in my "anti-meat" days... which shows how relative all of those fears are. These are the moments when it helps to remind me that it's ME who is in power - nothing in the external world will ever be able to affect me if I don't allow it to happen through my fearful thoughts and the stress those create in my body. It helps to breathe, to meditate and to tell myself to trust in life and in my body's capacity to handle a certain amount of toxins. I'm getting better and better at that I have to say.
In the meantime, I completed a training to become a certified Eating Psychology Coach. This training provided me the tools to help more people even more effectively - and also is the last missing piece in my puzzle of going through and transforming an Eating disorder into something truly beautiful and useful.
I will continue writing this story as I go along. In the meantime, I am grateful for each and every experience in it, because they all contributed to who I am today and qualify me in a very special way for the work I am doing now in this world.
Thank you very much for listening.