Dealing with health problems is not easy. They’re not easy to endure, nor sometimes, even diagnose. 

Lori Sullivan — a registered nurse, board-certified holistic health practitioner and master clinician of Nutrition Response Testing — has combated digestive and other health problems her entire life. But today, that’s no longer the case.

Through her business, NutritionWorks Holistic Health, in Bettendorf, she’s helping people who, like her, want to not only feel better, but experience optimal health, too.

Sullivan, whose original career interest was nursing, struggled with several health issues and experienced debilitating muscle and joint pain. She decided, ironically, not to take the conventional medical route, but instead chose to research alternative and holistic ways of healing her body.

In March 2011, she was introduced to Nutrition Response Testing at the Ulan Nutritional Systems, Inc. in Clearwater, Fla., and learned NRT could be the most effective way of helping the body to naturally get healthy. Freddie Ulan, doctor of chiropractic and certified nephrology nurse, is the founder and chairman of Ulan Nutritional Systems and Natural Health Improvement Center in Clearwater. An illness of his own lead him to develop NRT, a non-invasive system of using muscle testing to analyze the body in order to determine its underlying cause or causes of ailing health.

According to Ulan Nutritional Systems, Inc.'s website, unsinc.info, health problems can be corrected through safe, natural, nutritional means. The overall belief is that health deficiencies may be because of our personal eating habits and routines, “but it is for sure due, in some large extent, to the lack of quality in the foods commercially available in grocery stores or restaurants today," the site states. 

“Nothing I was doing really got to the root of my health problems,” Sullivan says. “I found out you can eat good nutrition but still have symptoms.”

After traveling to the institute in Florida, Sullivan finally experienced healing through NRT. “Your body is designed to heal itself,” she says, “and NRT is a way to identify what a body needs.”

Once Sullivan saw the benefits of the program, she studied the methodology and graduated from the Advanced Clinical Training program for Nutrition Response Testing, and in 2012, opened NutritionWorks Holistic Health, at 2255 Kimberly Road, Bettendorf. 

“I find my clients become part of my family, and together we start the journey to total health restoration and well-being. Our practice has grown in the last few years, and I love to see my dream being lived out.”

Sullivan continued her education by attending the International College of BioEnergetic Medicine in Colorado, and became a board-certified holistic health practitioner by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners through the International College of BioEnergetic Medicine.

“We do not diagnose problems,” Sullivan says. “We analyze your body’s health status, and then we develop a personalized health improvement program using designed clinical nutrition," which is based on clinical results and practice, as well as nutritious, real food. 

“It’s a system of cooperation and collaboration,” Sullivan says. “This is not at the exclusion of conventional medicine.” Instead, she says, the practice works with many area physicians and medical partners. 

In most cases, clients receive “concentrated, whole food in a tablet, capsule or powder, prepared using a unique manufacturing process that preserves all of the active enzymes and vital components that make it work as nature intended. These real-food supplements have been designed to match the needs of the body, as determined by the positive response shown when tested against the active Nutrition Response Testing organs/areas that were found on your individual Nutrition Response Testing analysis.”

Sullivan and her team begin with an intake process, where clients may discuss what ails them. Then, the team will explain NRT and how they can help.

“We’ll work with you to improve your diet on a gradual scale,” says Sullivan. “For example, are you drinking enough water?” 

For many people, seeing is believing. One of Sullivan’s associates, Jenna Crookshanks, is a true believer. She had started researching natural health during her teenage years so she could lose weight, she says.

“Although weight was my focus, I was dealing with several other issues as well: fatigue, acne, severe digestive issues, headaches and irregular menstrual cycles. I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome at age 21, and it was at that point that I finally made the decision to get healthy naturally," she says.

"I knew of Lori through a family friend, and became her client in June of 2014. Within a very short amount of time, my cycles became regular, I lost weight and my digestive issues decreased. I learned how to have a balanced lifestyle regarding health as well.”

Because the program had changed her life, and because she wanted to help people, Crookshanks joined the NutritionWorks team in August 2015. 

"Teaching others about natural health, empowering them to take the steps to get well and seeing them succeed is truly a blessing. I love each of my clients, and look forward to knowing whoever walks through the door of our office. My purpose is to help others live a fuller life by restoring their physical and emotional health, and I am grateful to carry it out every day," Crookshanks says.

"We clear the waters, so to speak, as to what the underlying root or cause of what’s bothering you can be,” Sullivan says.

The two say their practice is not meant to be a lifetime of repeated appointments. “We do not want to keep people on a lot of supplements,” Sullivan says. “We want the body to heal so that people are not coming back. What we can provide is a source for healing and restoration.”

Ann Ring is a frequent Radish contributor. For more information about NutritionWorks Holistic Health, visit nutritionworkswellness.com.

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