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  • Writer's pictureCourtney Gillis

Help me learn so I can help you heal

Updated: Jan 27, 2019

When I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease 8 years ago, my rheumatologist offered me a powerful chemotherapy drug called methotrexate and sent me on my way. She didn't ask me what I was eating, how much stress I had in my life or if I exercised. In fact, when I asked her if making changes in any of these areas might help she simply said "probably not, but you look like someone who already eats well and exercises so just keep it up."

Once I got over the initial terror of how this disease, called scleroderma, could impact my life and lives of my children, I googled this drug, methotrexate, and found a laundry list of equally terrifying side effects. There had to be another way.

The first book I ever read about wellness was called Spontaneous Healing by Dr. Andrew Weil. Spontaneous healing is the term conventional medicine uses when a person with an incurable disease reverses their symptoms. The reality is, it's not "spontaneous" at all, and people all over the world are doing it everyday. Their healing is not some miracle but a fact of biology -- the result of the natural healing system that each one of us is born with.

When I finished that book 8 years ago, I made the decision that I would heal body. I continued to read, research and experiment on myself. Over the years, I've learned a lot of important lessons that none of my doctors told me:

  1. There is no quick fix. Healing isn't easy and it takes time and patience.

  2. Despite what some health gurus might say, taking a supplement or even changing your diet isn't usually enough.

  3. If you've got an autoimmune disease, IBD, allergies, skin or mood issues, you likely have leaky gut and you must repair it. This. Takes. Work.

  4. You will only heal when you learn to manage stress. Stress isn't going to go away. You need to develop self-awareness and resilience.

  5. It's essential to move your body and go outside.

  6. Sleep heals and you need at least 8 hours every night.

  7. You have to BELIEVE you can heal and surround yourself with people who believe.

  8. You must deal with unresolved emotions and traumas - especially from your childhood.

  9. Autoimmune disease doesn't happen overnight. It develops over many years.

  10. Your body gives you signs it's on the path to illness - things we accept as normal, like bloating, acne, heartburn and fatigue. Common doesn't equal normal.

It took me years to figure all these things out, and I'm still learning. Health and wellness has become my passion. In October, I finally heeded the voice in my head telling me it was time to help empower other people to heal. I enrolled in the Academy for Integrative Medicine, and I have been studying with Dr. Keesha Ewers to become a health coach.

There are many nutrition and health coaching programs out there, and I searched and contemplated for a long time before I chose this one. What I love about this program is that it combines cutting edge functional medicine lab testing with the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda, along with psychotherapy techniques.

I need to work with some practice clients to graduate, and I'm looking for volunteers!

The coaching and consultations are FREE, but there is a fee for functional lab testing. With the right tests, we can pinpoint exactly what's happening with your gut, your adrenals and hormones and if you have food sensitivities. Costs range from about $250-350 depending on the test. People have been asking me why can't my doctor do these tests and why aren't they covered by insurance? The simple answer is this - they aren't diagnostic tests.

Insurance companies want a diagnosis so that your doctor can prescribe you a drug. The tests I'm learning to do are about looking for the root cause of your condition. Getting you healthy and off medications isn't in the interest of your insurance company.

Functional lab testing is also about prevention and turning your health around before you end up with a disease diagnosis. Healing is possible when you reach that point, but it's much harder. Another good reason to test - avoid wasting your money by trying every supplement and protocol under the sun. Test don't guess! I've spent thousands of dollars over the years because I read something about some supplement or because a practitioner thought it might help. If I'd had the right testing, I could have avoided this.

If you have an autoimmune condition or if you are feeling fatigued, have digestive or skin issues, or are having trouble losing weight, I can help! Email me to chat about free health coaching while I am studying and to learn more about the lab testing I am offering. If you have any questions you can also comment below.

Much love,


PS - I can work with you from anywhere - no need to be here in Calgary!

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1 Comment

Jan 02, 2022

Hello Courtney, my name is LaVonne Bilby from Truro, NS. I am a former colleague of your Mom’s; now retired. 💗 I live with gut issues and asthma.

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