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Rikki B. is a 51 year old patient that has been battling Crohn's and Celiac Disease for over 20 years. Since working with Dr. Leonti and Jenna Richardson, CIHC, FDN-P, Rikki has been able to reduce a number of prescription medications, decrease pain, and improve energy & mobility. Listen to Rikki share her powerful story on how Integrative Functional Medicine has changed her quality of life.
I was tired of feeling run down with no energy and I didn’t like how I looked with all the weight that I had gained the past couple of years. I am a person that always struggled with my weight growing up. I tried a bunch of diets and I would lose but put it right back on. Coming to PIH helped me get on the right path. It taught me how to lose the weight the correct way and not to gain it back. Don’t get me wrong it was hard for me at first and I was a little stressed but when I got going and figured out what foods I could eat I was good. My goal to lose was 30 pounds. I’m happy to say in 14 weeks about (3 1/2 months) I lost my 30 pounds. And now that I’m keeping up with it and not going back to my old ways I have lost an additional 10 pounds. 40 pounds AND I FEEL GREAT. I would highly recommend PIH to my friends and family. The Metabolic Reset Program is the way to go if you want to lose that unwanted weight. And most importantly I want to say everyone at PIH are wonderful, kind and caring.
Special thanks to Jenna for always being there when I had any questions or concerns and sticking by me through this journey!
I had no expectations prior to working with PIH. A terrible rash brought me to PIH that I’d had for over 2 years that was not effectively being treated by my Dermatologist, my Allergist or my Primary Care Physician. I was so frustrated with everything that when a friend mentioned that I might get a different perspective from an integrative health professional, I jumped at the chance And found PIH.
My rash is gone and even better, I realized that it was due to a gluten sensitivity. This was something every Physician previously told me could not cause my rash. Additionally, to confirm this, I took part in the Metabolic Reset Program (MRP) and no only did this cleanse my system of all toxins and make me feel great, have more energy and sleep better but I also lost 25 lbs in the process. I’ve continued to use the tools from the MRP and continued my weight loss journey to a total of 32 lbs! I’m in the best shape of my adult life, wearing clothes from college and looking even better in them at 40.
I liked the personal touch in the office, the fact that it is a family run business, everyone is super friendly and the common goal is to make people better; better in a way that is not offered via traditional medicine.
I would recommend PIH and I have and will continue to do so. If folks are not getting results through traditional medicine or simply want great care and results through healthy lifestyle changes and personal medicine, don’t hesitate to call PIH. I’m so glad I did!
All I can say is thank you. This plan probably saved my life and ensured that Maria and I will truly grow old and grey together. Not to mention that we'll have fun well into our later years. I still have a little more weight I want to lose, but at least now I know I can get there.
We didn't go in with expectations. Every diet or nutritional plan we went into in the past ended up failing, most likely due to our own fault. When my A1C came in at 6.6 this past January and my cholesterol was over 300, it was time to face reality. If i didn't stop, I was going to get sick and possibly die far younger than I wanted to. Maria found the metabolic reset plan, and we both had the mindset of being able to take this on.
The conference calls were very helpful and we still use all the points we learned to this day. Jenna was always very supportive and accessible if we needed her.
As of today, I have lost 97 lbs and my A1C and cholesterol (and everything else) are all in normal range. I feel the best I've felt since college. I don't get winded going up and down the stairs anymore. I've gone down 3 pant sizes and 2 shirt sizes. Maria has maintained a 30 pound weight loss and her blood work is also clear.
I think the plan absolutely works but I'm not 100% sure if it's for everyone. For someone who was in my position, who needs to turn their life around and make a true lifestyle change, I would urge them to try it.
“As someone who tries ‘a new diet every three months,’ I began a search for a food plan that would be sustainable for my body and lifestyle. I was lucky enough to have met Jenna, who has been a consistent source of knowledge, accountability and leadership. I had a bingeing problem, an overeating problem and a generally unhealthy mind-set about food. Jenna’s program has been comforting to me mentally and has helped me to feel more normal. I tried to do this on my own for so long, and it just didn’t work. I refused to be the woman who, in 20 years or so, was still ‘dieting.’ Thanks, Jenna.”
“I have a feeling that a lot of people look to integrative health as a fast track to skinny. I am not a client who came to Princeton Integrative Health intent on losing weight. When I came to Jenna, it was because I had intense stress coupled with a thyroid disorder. I could barely get out of bed or off the couch at night. After Jenna told me about the program options at PIH, I knew I was a six-month candidate. That’s because it usually takes me a while to achieve success at something. I am now five months into the program, and I can honestly say that with Jenna’s encouragement, I have been able to make changes for myself that I never would have otherwise. During the first three months, we worked to lower the stress in my life and to make dietary changes in a way where I didn’t feel awful doing them. I am not an easy client based on my history, but knowing I see Jenna every other week gives me an outlet and incentive as well as someone to hold me accountable for my own health, mentally and physically. As a patient of PIH, I have learned the science behind what is happening in my body.”
I had been frustrated with being unable to lose weight and in fact gaining weight over the last 5 years. As an active tennis player and working out 3+ times a week, my frustration was mounting. I did not believe I could do it, to make the changes, stick with the program, and not be starving. I discovered so much about what is good for me at this age, how to let go of old patterns, and finally, feel like my old, healthy self again. As our food sources have changed, and been compromised, I got the support I needed to adjust to those changes. Jenna, you were an amazing support to help me through the end. Thank you!!!!!!
It's been a transformational journey since I met Jenna in July 2019. Physically and emotionally, I've made big progress. My head is more clear, no brain fog anymore, my skin is more stable, less mood swings and happier. On top of all that, I have lost 23lbs. I like the way I look now and I plan on keeping the weight off for the rest of my life. I feel alive again. In the point of view of a traditional doctor, I was a perfectly healthy person but I knew there's something wrong. After giving birth to my first son 5 years ago and the second 2 years later, everything went downhill. I gained weight, not happy and depressed sometimes, exhausted all the time and bad skin outbreak on my face due to stress. It was so bad that made me think it's not fair for myself and my family so I made the decision to get help last summer. The first session with Jenna, I knew I was at the right place. I was welcomed and listened to and cared for. I started making changes on my diet and lifestyle. We also did tests to pin point what’s needed to be done for my body. It's not easy but well worth it. I'm grateful for having the support from Jenna, PIH, my family and myself. We're still working on it as being healthy is a life long journey. The best I've learned is to develop a diet and way of living that fit me and allow me to enjoy my life. Thank you Jenna!
“I have fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and arthritis. When I came to PIH, I was also experiencing painful stomach problems with gas and bloating.
After some pretty unique tests, I learned there was help for me! The nutritionist, Jenna Richardson, suggested some pretty drastic dietary changes, and I started to experience improvement shortly after I started them. I even lost some weight during the process!
Dr. (Vincent) Leonti and Patti McDougall were very helpful and supportive. The coaching sessions were conducted in an atmosphere that is ‘comfy’ and safe. I learned to trust their recommendations and knew I could depend on their support along the way. This atmosphere at PIH is much different from most doctor’s offices (where I think they rush you through an appointment due to insurance rules and often prescribe a medication after a very short period of diagnosis). PIH takes extra time and looks at the overall situation instead of treating just one symptom.
I’ve been so pleased that I’ve already recommended PIH to my friends. Attend one of their information sessions, and I am sure you will also be pleased to join them for a journey to a healthier you.”
I would like to express my gratitude on behalf of myself and my family for making yourself present in my recovery. As you instructed, we began the journey of educating ourselves with the books of Dr. Fung, The Code of Obesity, The Code of Diabetes, and The Obesity Code Cookbook. It has been revealed through these books, first the history of diets, misconceptions, and stereotypes about dieting, and the epidemic of obesity. I trust that through the process, little by little I will learn how to redirect myself to full recovery. I recall that in our meeting you asked a question about how committed I will be to this new task. As I am reading I'm realizing more and more that I want to be one of your disciples, and trust your experience. Some of the medications that have been prescribed to me are uncomfortable, and Dr. Valcarcel noticed some swelling in my feet and my legs and gave me yet one more medication to help me eliminate fluids. I recall that one of my goals before was to quit the meds. Now I'm saturated with a lot of meds and I feel I need guidance through the process. I have been very disciplined with my diet, and I have tested my blood pressure and my blood sugar daily, and 96% of the time has been very good, except on some occasions when I have woken up around 2:00 am with blood sugar of 52, and 60, and I'm keeping a diary as part of the process with all the information.
I'm really looking forward to talking with you again and have feedback regarding dieting, exercising, and blood sugar levels. Also, strategies towards improving my liver condition.
Again thank you very much for motivating me, and to make me feel inspired to writing these lines to you.
I started taking the Saccharomycees boulardii and within a week it is helping me a lot. It works on my Rosacea and my stomach. I feel much better after taking it. Thank you for the Saccharomycees boulardii, I would have never known about it without you!
Doctor Vinny actually sat with me for a whole HOUR during my last consultation. I've never had a doctor devote that much time to me, nor ask great questions about my lifestyle. The price is 100% worth the dedication and recommendations the office provides.
“My health has been a long time in the works. Doctor after doctor, test after test, and still no one could find out what was wrong with me. When I first came to PIH, I thought it was just another visit with no answers. But blessings came in the form of Dr. Leonti. He immediately diagnosed the root cause; gastrointestinal issues. With the help of the entire team, especially Jenna, who gave me hope and made me believe there is a better tomorrow. Her positive energy radiates every time I visit her, and she has helped me greatly. I also can’t forget to mention Dr. Conny, who is very sweet.
If you’re reached the last straw, like me and have almost given up, I would highly recommend Princeton Integrative Health and its amazing team.”
“Of all the physicians I’ve consulted over the years, you have to be one of the kindest. Despite being an undoubtedly busy person, you listen patiently to my questions and address them as carefully as possible. And, while some doctors might feel threatened by my desire to participate fully in my medical care, you appear perfectly comfortable with that role, making me feel comfortable in return. Underlying all this is your slightly ironic sense of humor, without which, as far as I am concerned, life is not worth living. I might arrive for an appointment full of stress and anxiety, but your calming presence enables me to depart with a modicum of peace. The older I get, the more I understand that body and mind are not really dichotomous, and clearly you realize that too. All by way of saying I feel very fortunate to have found a doctor like you to shore up my tottering health in this uncertain world.”
“I met with Jenna to discuss my emotional and physical health. She spent time getting to know me. I walked out of her office feeling better about myself, my goals and my overall interest in developing habits to live a healthier, less stressful life. She is smart, professional and easy to talk to. I look forward to having Jenna in my life “forever” and to taking her well-researched and educated “prescriptions” for a better and fulfilling life. I’d advise anyone to spend some time with Jenna, even if only five minutes!”
Highly recommend- Dr V and Jenna are committed to my health- encouraging me to re-evaluate my lifestyle, food choices, and outlook. I have friends, a tribe of likeminded people who appreciate positive thinking, eating options, hobbies, reading materials. I’ve been put on a new track, not just back on track.
“I am a type 2 diabetic who has been taking multiple medications to control diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. During a routine appointment in 2016, I discovered my A1C number was 10.2, the highest it’s been since I started tracking my numbers 12 years ago. In addition, my blood pressure was 146/80, my cholesterol was 175 (45 HDL, 82 LDL), my triglycerides were 236, and I had a small amount of protein in my urine. Dr. Leonti suggested a different plan of action to improve my numbers. Before making more medication changes, he suggested a low-carb diet of eggs most mornings, salads, nuts, vegetables, meats, almond milk and fruit. After one month, we checked my progress, and the trend was positive. At my next routine appointment, my numbers were significantly improved. My weight was down 32 pounds after six months. My A1C number was 6.3, blood pressure was 108/78, cholesterol was 130 (53 HDL, 57 LDL), and triglycerides were 99. These were the lowest numbers I had achieved in 12 years. We were able to cut my metformin and Avapro dosages in half. I definitely feel better than before and have more energy. I hope to see further improvement in my numbers, and possibly eliminate the need for medication, by maintaining my current eating habits.”
“My first appointment with Jenna and Dr. Leonti was refreshing and helpful. For 60 minutes, they listened closely to my long, intricate and complicated health history. Jenna and Dr. Leonti bring the best of functional medicine and Western medicine perspectives into one space”
“The first time I was going to meet with Jenna, I almost backed out. But a voice inside my head said, “Don’t do this, you need to go.” It turned out to be the best decision for me. I felt very comfortable and safe talking to her. Since I started the program, I have felt incredibly different in mind, body and spirit… a very good different. Change is challenging and can be scary. The support was strong from Jenna and Jackie, who also joined the group. It is amazing to me how learning to eat in a healthy manner has had such a profound impact on my life!”
“PIH is a companion and an ally in my quest to determine the root cause of my health problems and to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Through various medical tests and consultations with the team, I have gotten a clearer picture of the status of my overall health, possible factors contributing to my various health issues, and what we can do to address these. They never promised a quick-fix-for-all-your-health-problems-solution, but they are walking with me through the process.
The whole team is very friendly, approachable and helpful. I have already recommended them to my friends and will not hesitate to do so again.”
I had suffered with eczema since I was six months old. I spent 24 years taking steroid pills, injections, using cortisone creams, receiving allergy shots, and going for allergy test, after test, after test. And in those 24 years my eczema surpassed any of those “treatments”, and often came back stronger than ever. Finally, in August of 2018 I had reached my limit of suffering. I was experiencing a flare up like I had never experienced before. There was a constant feeling of an internal fire beneath the surface of my skin, so much so that I spent several nights with my pillow in the shower laying under freezing cold water because it was the only way I’d get any relief or sleep. Again with a flare up, my mom and I made the usual appointments with my doctors. After being told my last resort was a daily immuno suppressant injection, my mom and I knew we had to change what we were looking for in a doctor. My mom had done a lot of research on how diet influences and effects eczema. Every doctor we saw we asked if my diet could be effecting my skin. Many chuckled in our faces, and assured us there was no way my skin condition would be caused by my digestive system. With each of those responses we moved on to a new doctor. With all the research we had we knew we had to find a doctor that would at least entertain this idea for us. What we found at Princeton Integrative Health was beyond entertaining this idea, but truly, whole-heatedly believing in this idea.
The moment I walked into PIH’s office I felt like I was understood. I sat there looking at their mural of root causes, and found myself for the first time in my life looking at all the possible causes for my eczema, that all of my previous doctors told me could not possibly be the cause. I met with Dr. Vinny and felt completely heard. I had never had an experience with a doctor like that. He assured me everything I questioned before were the right questions to ask, praised my mom for doing the research, and promised me he’d do everything he could so I could regain the quality of life I deserved. I left that initial appointment and cried the entire ride home. This time instead of crying from frustration, anger, and hopelessness, I was crying from relief. Relief that maybe I wouldn’t have to sleep in the shower anymore. Relief that I could wear short sleeves, and not worry about people staring at my arms. Relief that my eczema would be less noticeable, and people would finally stop asking me if it were contagious. At that time I couldn’t have even imagined where I would be now, only 7 months into my journey – ECZEMA FREE.
I worked closely with Dr. Vinny and Jess Carlan Ahlers, and they completely saved me. Jess entirely devotes herself to her patients. She helps them see the whole picture of their health that goes even beyond nutrition. While creating and implementing my protocol, she held me accountable, while allowing me to be human and falter along the way. Jess made herself available in every way to keep me motivated, on track, and feeling excited about my plan. This for me was crucial because the changes that happen take time and consistency. It was hard at times to stay completely on track, but anytime I felt myself feeling like I was slipping off I pictured myself trying to sleep in my shower, and that would immediately refocus my priorities. She celebrated every milestone with me, and made me feel like I finally had a handle on my health. There are no words to express my gratitude for being introduced to this team at Princeton Integrative Health.
If you’re still reading this that means you are doing your research and truly looking for an answer to help you overcome whatever you are going through. I will always say that my answer was Princeton Integrative Health. Before finding them I felt your frustration; I felt your pain; and I felt your hopelessness. I get it because I’ve been there. You’re already doing the right first step by exploring an integrative approach to your health. Take the second step, and call them! It will completely change your life in the most positive of ways!
Six months ago, I felt like I was dying... I walked into Princeton Integrative Health and shared my story of going to doctor upon doctor, specialist upon specialist and no one could help me. I was an otherwise healthy 30 year old who had contracted C Difficile - a super nasty stomach bug that causes extreme stomach pain and 15-30 loose movements per day. I felt a renewed sense of hope after our discussions and was ready to tackle the program. I asked Dr. Vinny to “Save Me….” and I am happy to report, they did.
After I signed up for the Empowered Health program, I was ready to take on the next 10 sessions and co-create health with the PIH team. My lab work showed a very leaky gut, low functioning adrenals, skewed hormones, and vitamin deficiencies. Dr. Vinny & Health Coach, Jenna put me on a great supplement and food program which made me feel so much better!! (still take them)
Unfortunately two weeks after signing up, I became a part of the unlucky few we contracted recurrent C Diff. My body couldn’t fight the virus and I needed help. I worked with Health Coach, Jess to create a nutritional plan to help fight off the C Diff and to help me function. After four recurrences of C Diff – I had a Fecal Matter Transplant. I am happy to report I have now been C Diff Free for 3 months!! I do not think I could have survived without the nutritional and medical support from the PIH team.
That was not the end of the story. I ended up vomiting blood and having extreme stomach pain which sent me to the ER. I informed Dr. Vinny, Jess, and Jenna who were all quick to reply and offer their support. I ended up being diagnosed with Barret’s Esophagus, Fatty Liver, and Biliary Dyskinesia which required Gall Bladder removal.
I am doing much better. I finished the Empowered Health Program and signed up for the Essential Health Program with Jess. I have improved so much, but plan to work with the team to continue to improve my health and hopefully reverse my Barret’s Esophagus & Fatty Liver diagnoses (which can be improved with diet and exercise). They also assist in managing my autoimmune disease Hashimoto’s.
I cannot recommend Princeton Integrative Health enough!! This was the best decision I have made, which I honestly believe saved my life. Although you are assigned a health coach and work with Dr. Vinny, the entire staff is invested in your well-being and helps to brainstorms ways to assist you. If you are unsure about joining, take the leap of faith! You won’t regret it.
“A few years ago, I was diagnosed with an immune system disorder called Sjogren’s syndrome, and the only treatment I was offered was a drug designed to treat malaria. It was a drug I would have to take for the rest of my life, and the only thing it would do is, maybe, help alleviate some symptoms.
I decided this was not the option for me. I had heard about integrative medicine and attended a free workshop at PIH. They offered information that immediately resonated with me, and I signed up.
After initial testing, we addressed my issues with natural supplements, healthy lifestyle changes and ongoing support through follow-up visits and coaching.
Today I am feeling much better, and many of my symptoms are vanishing. I would definitely recommend PIH to anyone who is tired of following the traditional medical route and not getting relief from their ailments.”
“I like the fact that Dr. Vinny (Leonti) has a conventional medical background that complements Jenna’s awesome fountain of knowledge and experience.
PIH has helped me tremendously with my autoimmune condition, and I have experienced significant improvement. In addition to Dr. Vinny and Jenna, Patti is a caring nurse and a great listener, and Jackie (the patient ambassador) will make you feel she has known you forever the minute you walk in the door.
I hope to continue co-caring for my health with them for years to come!”
Prior to finding PIH I had given up hope in finding the right fit for a me in an integrative health practitioner. After my preliminary visit with Dr. Vinny I was pleasantly surprised at his candor and approach to treating patients. I liked the fact that he has a conventional medical background that compliments Jenna’s awesome fountain of knowledge and experience.
PIH has helped me tremendously with my autoimmune condition and I have experienced significant improvement. I am constantly learning new things. In addition to Dr. Vinny and Jenna, PIH has Patti who is caring nurse and a great listener and Jackie (their patient ambassador) who will treat you as she has known you forever the minute you walk in the door.
In conclusion, it has been a great experience! I have recommended PIH to friends and family. I hope to continue co-caring for my health with them for years to come!