Beauty & Wellness Starting from Within
Danielle Pashko is a Holistic Nutritionist and Health Coach with two decades of experience. Her specialties are immune health, weight loss, digestive health, children’s nutrition, women’s health, Lyme disease, and Long COVID. Danielle is the author of Breaking Your Fat Girl Habits and Smile at Your Challenges.
Danielle has worked in clinical practice with some of Manhattan’s leading functional medicine physicians as well as with clients at The Sports Club LA, The Reebok Sports Club, Equinox Fitness, Exhale Spa and The Peninsula Spa. Danielle also served as the nutritionist to Park East Synagogue Day School for several years. While already working as a practitioner, Danielle overcame two health challenges of her own. She beat Thyroid Cancer and later was able to recover from Chronic Lyme Disease. Danielle’s health challenges have given her the skills of empathy and intuition when helping others.
Danielle is currently working with world renowned health expert Oz Garcia in his Upper West Side clinic.
Danielle has developed weight loss & detoxification programs as well as customized nutraceutical products for doctors throughout New York City and has consulted for established restaurants on healthy menu development. Her expertise in the wellness field has led to articles and videos on health and beauty for several publications including The NY Post, PIX11 NY News, FOX & Friends, NY1 News, ABC News, The Vitamin Shoppe, Chase Bank, USA Today, Reader’s Digest, I24 News, YPO as well as Physicians Formula makeup “Star of the Month.”
Danielle has a great background and is quite proficient in nutrition and wellness and all roads drive these professionals leading them to where they’re today. My mother was very sick with breast cancer when I was a child. Traditional treatments were only helping her so much and she decided to explore holistic modalities (but unfortunately started too late). She taught me about homeopathic remedies, a Macrobiotic Diet, visualization, and meditation when I was only ten years old. She unfortunately passed 3 years later although I wanted to help as many people prevent experiencing what she did. I have been working in the Holistic health space my entire professional career which is over 20 years. I have certifications in functional nutrition, yoga, massage therapy, energy work and apply what I’ve learned during my sessions with clients since I don’t believe in just managing nutrition alone for optimal health.”
There are many people struggling with their health especially since COVID. Unfortunately, I do have many friends and family members who have been sick and feel the same way and I’m included in that number. “Yes, there are many people who say that they were perfectly healthy until the Covid pandemic and once they got sick (even if mild) or had a vaccine injury they were left with severe lingering side effects. What this subset of people likely don’t realize is that they probably were not as healthy as they thought they were. While there is no test for Long COVID, if you do a viral panel with these people, you could likely see a reactivation of old dormant viruses that they forgot about during childhood or their teenage years. This could be the Epstein Barr Virus (EBV), one of the herpes viruses, The Cytomegalo Virus (CMV), reactivated Lyme Disease or several issues that they recovered from. COVID and sometimes the vaccine can trigger immune dysregulation and cause a host of odd symptoms that are very hard to diagnose.
Always on top of most individual’s minds is nutrition and wanting to lose weight. Ozempic is certainly a favorite drug by not only the folks in Hollywood, but also throughout the country. Unfortunately, there are some negatives. What is your take on this “wonder or not so wonder” drug? “Ozempic comes through for weight loss and may also improve blood sugar. It also may improve cardiovascular health. Unfortunately, this drug may also come with side effects just like taking any medication. You may be lucky and only see positive results, although it’s possible to develop serious digestive issues such as gastroparesis, gallstones, and thyroid issues. If you are determined to lose weight quickly for an occasion like a wedding or something special, I would recommend only using Ozempic short term. Although there is no better way for sustainable weight loss other than good nutrition, regular exercise combined with a well-rounded diet, will provide the benefits for a healthy lifestyle. I don’t believe in fad diets or one specific way of eating for everyone. I think it’s important to review lab work to have a better understanding of how your body will react to certain foods. For example, some people may thrive on a Vegan diet, but it may make a person with thyroid issues or someone else who is pre-diabetic feel worse. These people tend to do better eating less grains and more protein perhaps in the form of a Paleo style diet. Another example is a ketogenic diet which is great for weight loss and can help with brain function, although if you have a history of high cholesterol or gallstones then a high fat diet like this can be extremely problematic. Each type of diet should be examined based on someone’s health history, sometimes blood type and even ethnicity.
Let’s talk about exercise since many feel like they don’t have time with their personal and professional schedules. “I do hear this complaint quite often as work obligation and home life demand most of our time. People should try to get in some kind of exercise regularly for at least 30 minutes a day, especially cardiovascular exercise like walking, cycling, running, etc. You don’t need to kill yourself at the gym or do an intense boot camp style workout to be healthy. In fact, with age exercise should become more restorative. Too much wear and tear on the body accelerates aging at a certain point in life and can make you look older in addition to putting stress on the joints. It’s good in addition to cardio to focus on stretching, breathing exercises, and gentle weight bearing exercises that can be done with bands or light free weights. I personally don’t subscribe to the “No pain no gain” philosophy.
Supplements are a hot topic today and most people don’t know how to go about taking them and which ones to take? “This is true! There is a big misconception that herbs supplements are no big deal because after all they are “natural”. Some can be as potent as medications. I am a believer that many people can benefit from supplements, but I don’t like to make any recommendations before looking at lab work. Even some probiotics which seem so benign can do more harm than good if you have a condition called SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth). Please don’t take something because you saw it on Tik Tok. It’s best to consult with a professional.”
Lastly, women’s hormones are a big topic, and most are reluctant to try hormone
replacement therapy due to the side effects. “Yes, this is a big topic for majority of women who are in menopause and those who are pre-menopausal. As women’s hormones begin to decline, it can take a major toll on sleep, energy, vitality, weight gain, bone density, overall appearance (hair thinning, wrinkles) and self-esteem. It’s not a surprise women want a solution to feel like themselves again. Unfortunately, synthetic hormones have been linked to cancer and that’s a scary trade off. While bioidentical hormones have been touted as safer, there are many practitioners who claim to be BHRT specialists but have only taken a short course aside from their traditional medical training. It’s a little unsettling to put your life in their hands. While there are some very skilled doctors in this area, it’s still understandable to not feel comfortable with the idea that cancer runs in your family and even “natural hormones” could tip the scales not in your favor. There are ways to eat that can improve hormone health in addition to using nutritional supplements. Women can also try seed cycling. A company that specializes in this natural approach is called Beeya.”
Danielle works with people of all ages that want to feel healthier, improve immunity, gut health, increase energy, as well as maintain a healthy weight.