April 6, 2020
Faces of Fauquier: She shares passion for nutrition
Photo/Don Del Rosso
“It’s not a quick fix,” Andrejewski says. “It’s a lifestyle change I’m teaching people.”
I want to help people, especially anyone who maybe suffering for many years like I had, without answers.
The New Baltimore health coach had a career “light-bulb moment” about 11 years ago during a pitch to close a major advertising deal.
Based in Alexandria, Amy Andrejewski sold ads at the time for a group of military-focused publications owned by the Washington Post Co.
In late 2008, “I was in a meeting with my biggest client,” Mrs. Andrejewski recalled. “I was supposed to be doing a contract for the next year, and I spent most of it speaking with my client’s assistant about his digestive issues and what foods he should be eating and not eating.”
As the two spoke, it occurred to her that she cared more about nutrition than selling ads.
“And that was my light-bulb moment,” said Mrs. Andrejewski, 42. “ ‘This is what I’m passionate about, and this is what I want to do’.”
So in 2009 she earned a health coaching certificate from the Manhattan-based Institute for Integrative Nutrition and started a business of her own — Health With Amy.
In some ways, her new career seemed like the right fit long before she realized it.
“I kind of always was a little bit sick growing up,” the Fredericksburg native said. “Nothing major but just constant colds. I was an allergy kid. I missed a lot of school.”
An as an adult, she also suffered from “chronic” headaches and fatigue and “digestive” problems “to the point where I just didn’t feel well at all.”
Various medical specialists misdiagnosed or couldn’t explain her ailments, Mrs. Andrejewski said.
That led her “down the path of learning about nutrition, making a lot of dietary and lifestyle changes and finally becoming healthy and figuring out, ‘OK, this is what my body needs, this what my body hates’,” she said.
Mrs. Andrejewski learned that her body “hated” gluten and struggled to process refined sugar.
“It was kind of getting back to basics — fresh, whole food,” she said of her new diet. “Fruits, vegetables, healthy protein.”
Mrs. Andrejewski doesn’t meet with clients at her home.
Instead, she initially emails them a three-page “health history” survey. After reviewing the document, Mrs. Andrejewski prepares follow-up questions that she and clients discuss by phone.
After that, they meet at the client’s supermarket of choice for a “shopping tour.”
The client brings a food list that Mrs. Andrejewski critiques — suggesting what might be added and removed.
Over time, the client gradually introduces into his or her diet nutritious foods and eliminates unhealthy ones, she said.
“I put them on a personalized, step-by-step program to help them reach their health goals, but not only help them reach their goals but help them maintain for a long time after,” Mrs. Andrejewski said. “It’s not a quick fix. It’s a lifestyle change I’m teaching people.”
Her clients include individuals, couples and families. Many want to lose weight or get relief from digestive problems and allergies.
Occasionally, Mrs. Andrejewski works with fitness buffs and athletes who already have healthy diets “but want to take their training to a new level” and “maybe want more energy.”
Like most businesses, hers has felt the adverse financial effects of the coronavirus outbreak.
An important revenue source, all workshops have stopped for now, Mrs. Andrejewski said.
While the health coach remains open to taking new clients, she would do so with great caution.
“I haven’t pushed as hard to do that because a lot of the time I’m sending them to the grocery store, and I’m walking with them and telling them to go buy this and that,” Mrs. Andrejewski said. “It’s a Catch-22. We should all be eating healthier now. We should be boosting our immune system. But at the same time, I don’t want to be directing someone into a store and be out in public.”
Near New Baltimore
Health coach, owner of Health with Amy, 2009-present; advertising sales representative, Comprint Military Publications, 2004-09, Alexandria; pricing analyst, Deutsche Post Global Mail, 2003-04, Herndon.
• Why do you do the job?
I’m very passionate about nutrition and natural health. I want to help people, especially anyone who maybe suffering for many years like I had, without answers.
Husband, Dennis; two young children.
Health coaching certificate, Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Manhattan, 2009; bachelor’s degree, economics, Virginia Tech, 2001; Stafford High School, 1995.
• Civic involvement
Treasurer, Robin Hood of Warrenton, charitable nonprofit, 2019-present.
• How long have you lived in Fauquier?
About six years.
• Why do you live here?
We were in Fairfax and kind of looking for our forever home. We wanted to raise children with more space, fresh air. We wanted that kind of small-community feel. I had that growing up in Fredericksburg.
We wanted a little bit slower pace than Fairfax offered. I like the ease of getting to Fredericksburg, because my family’s still there.
• How do you describe this county?
Beautiful, peaceful, very welcoming; full of farms and small businesses; easily accessible to other places like D.C., if you want a night adventure, or Shenandoah Park, if you want to go hiking.
• What would you change about Fauquier?
Not much. Maybe a few more local restaurants, not chains. A few more things for kids and families to do.
It’s a fine line, though, because I don’t want it to become a Gainesville, by any means.
• What do you do for fun?
Family adventures. We like to hike, bike, go camping, socialize with friends. We love live music. So we’ll go to music festivals.
• What’s your favorite place in Fauquier?
Downtown (Warrenton), especially during events like First Friday, the spring festival, the Christmas parade.
• What will Fauquier be like in 10 years?
I’m not sure. I can hope it’s still going to just keep that same small vibe. Obviously, we’re going to have growth. I just hope it’s not too much growth too fast.
We definitely wonder are we going to end up farther out in 10 years, because this area becomes too crowded?
• Favorite TV show?
I probably don’t have one. But we like competitive shows like “Survivor,” or cooking competition shows like “Chopped.”
• Favorite movie?
• Favorite book?
“A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose” by Eckhart Tolle.
• Favorite vacation spot?
Wrightsville Beach, N.C.
• Favorite food?
Blue crabs from the Chesapeake Bay.
• What is the best advice you have ever received? From whom?
My first yoga teacher. She always said during class to honor your body — meaning do what feels right today. Don’t compare yourself to the person next to you. Just do what works for you.
So I did that in yoga. And I think that way with food. I want to honor my body — give it what it’s asking for and help it be healthy and to listen to what it’s telling me.
I tell my clients that if you start to pay attention to how food affects your body, your life can really change.
• Who’s your hero and why?
My mom. She is the most loving and caring woman you’ll ever meet. But she’s also very tough and resilient. She’s been through a lot and always just pushes on with a smile.
I feel like she kind of taught me how to not only survive but thrive.
• What would you do if you won $5 million in the lottery?
I would open up a natural health and wellness center and then also make sure everyone who wanted it would have access to healthy, fresh, real food.
Have a suggestion?
Do you know someone who lives in Fauquier County you would like to see in Faces of Fauquier? Email Don Del Rosso at Don@FauquierNow.com or Lou Emerson at LKE@fauquiernow.com
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Savefauquiercounty2019 · April 6, 2020 at 8:19 pm
You are a blessing.
The public needs to read, Liver Rescue, Dr Wahls protocol,and gluten free books like Eat Dirt.
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