Kelly Mulhall is the Founder of The Natural Balance and helps people improve their health by making positive changes to their diet. Kelly talks to The Industry Leaders about how she transitioned her life and career via nutrition and gives some recommendations to help you create positive habits.
How did you end up sitting where you are today?
I was in my 30s and struggled for years with IBS and acne and was getting nowhere with conventional medicine. I decided to look into more natural methods to heal my body and stumbled across nutrition.
It was not something I had ever considered, and my diet wasn't particularly healthy. I barely cooked and survived on ready meals and snacks. I saw a nutritionist who completely changed my life, so much that I quit my job in events and marketing to become a Nutritional therapist.
What kind of work does your role involve?
Day to day, I am working with clients suffering from a range of digestive disorders and/or hormonal imbalance. I will conduct comprehensive medical evaluations on their health to understand the root cause of their symptoms. Once we have found this, which often involves functional medicine testing, we will put together a nutritional plan, discuss supplements, and evaluate other stressors such as work, finances, family, and social life, impacting their health. I usually work closely with my clients for 3-6 months to get the best outcome.
What gets you excited about your industry?
I love that I can adapt to the latest scientific research within the field of health, wellbeing and nutrition to give the best protocols to those I work with. Patient-centred healthcare is the medical industry's future, and a personalised approach to making someone well is so much more helpful and valuable. I also find the field of nutrigenomics fascinating. The fact that we can switch our genes on and off by what we eat is incredible and will be such an essential part of healthcare in the future.
What's the best advice anyone ever gave you?
"Live for today with an eye for tomorrow." Enjoy your life to the full but not at the expense of your mental or physical health later. Be aware of the consequences but give yourself some slack. This is why I always use the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time, try to be healthy, and 20% of the time indulge, go wild, do whatever you want.
What, or who inspires you?
The body inspires me. It is the most complicated machine on this planet, and it's perfectly made. It has this incredible capacity to rejuvenate despite the many things we put it through. There are so many ways we can use the body and mind, and there are literally infinite possibilities within us. The more you connect with your body and mind, the more it blows you away with what it can do.
How do you keep up to speed with what's happening in your industry?
I think Welltodo always has the latest insights within the business side of health and wellness. But I use a lot of the resources available from The Association of Naturopathic Practitioners and BANT to keep on top of my CPD. I also like to listen to podcasts from the likes of Lucas Rockwood and Dr Chatterji, which have really interesting episodes on a wide variety of wellness experts.
What was the most challenging project or situation you've overcome?
Coming to a standstill in my career. I was struggling at work, working long hours, hating my job and realising that working for someone else was soul-destroying. Discovering that nutrition could be a career was a lightbulb moment. So I decided to quit my job and a week later had enrolled to become a nutritionist.
You finish work today and step outside the office to find a lottery ticket that ends up winning $10 million. What would you do?
Firstly I'd hire a huge villa in some hot and sunny place for all my friends and family and have a massive holiday and one big party! Then I'd look at donating some charity, buying a house and investing in my business.
How do you switch off after a day at work?
Music. I've recently bought a piano, so I've been learning to play. I'm also learning to mix on the decks too. I also love getting out for a walk or cycle listening to some music or a good audiobook.
If you had one wish for the future of your industry, what would it be?
That it becomes the norm for people to heal their body naturally through proper nutrition, stress reduction and exercise rather than just taking medication.
What book or podcast should everyone know about?
How Not to Die by Dr Michale Greger - A book that everyone in the world should read! What is the best way to prevent disease and live a long and healthy life? Just eat real food with lots of fruits and vegetables!
Atomic Habits by James Clear - if you struggle to stick to new years resolutions or habits then this book is for you!
The Body by Bill Bryson - absolutely fascinating account of the history of the body and modern medicine