Welcome to Naturna Institute

Where the best of Eastern medicine and Western science converge to form a comprehensive, cross-discipline approach. Listening, instead of dictating, allowing a deeper dialogue to manifest a more complete diagnosis. Revealing the true root causes behind symptoms and conditions and crafting unique health plans that empower you through education and inspiration to conquer bad habits and create better ones.

Mon 11am-8pm, Tues 11:30am-7:30pm, Wed-Fri 8am-8pm, Sat 10am-3pm, Sun 11am-4pm

(646) 609-4250

129 E 90th Street #1W, New York, NY, 10128


All About Soy

“Is soy bad for you, or is soy good for you?” is a common question I get asked as nutritionist. Unfortunately, the answer is not a simple one, because there is conflicting evidence on this topic. My general answer is that soy is bad for you most of the time, but there are some exceptions when it can be good. In this blog post, you can learn more about soy and when it can be harmful or helpful! Phytoestrogens In order to understand soy, it is important to understand phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens are known as “dietary estrogens” because they are not produced in the body like the estrogen hormone. Instead, they are ingested or consumed through certain foods. Phytoestrogens are found in plants like soy, where they are...

Keeping Up with New Years Resolutions of Health

As the first month of the new year draws to a close, many of us have made little progress on our resolutions like getting in better shape, eating healthier, or just wanting to feel better. If you have ever tried shedding a few pounds, becoming more physically active, or simply leading a healthier lifestyle, you know that it’s not always easy. There are a lot of factors that play a role in our health, so it’s important to look at all of them. However, this does not have to be done all at once! As a Nutritionist, I have found that setting small goals each week with my clients allows them to achieve their long-term goals. Here are a few tips to help you get...

Get the Skinny on Fats

The Skinny on Fats   Many believe they need to avoid dietary fats in order to maintain a healthy diet. Nutritional guideline plans have even been created to accommodate this trend by recommending higher amounts of carbohydrates and very low fats. Now, low-fat and nonfat foods have been normalized to become part of the common diet. However, in order to enhance the flavor of these products, companies replace the fat with high amounts of sugar. Many healthcare communities and social media make claims about dietary fat that are often misleading and false. The idea that high fat diets with saturated fat and cholesterol would lead to heart disease has been has been exposed to be false by studies such as in Siri-Tarino, Sun, Hu, & Krauss’s (2010)...

Nutrition and Cancer: Can you “starve” cancer?

Dominant cancer theory is based on genetics: that is why Angelina Jolie had a double mastectomy – she showed positive for a genetic mutation deemed the breast cancer “gene.”  There are also other theories (and case histories of miraculous remission) that beg to differ with cancer as a fatalistic “you were born with it” idea. Different theories (with a base in discoveries as early as the 1930s) are popping up more and more in articles about how we live and what we can do to REVERSE our risk for cancer. The concept that we can turn cancer causing genes on or off and prevent cancer with lifestyle changes continues to pop up in the health media.  

One school of thought gaining steam is that of Dr. Otto Heinrich Warburg. Warburg won the Nobel Prize in 1933 and 1941 for his research on cancer. His theory was that cancer happens because the cells are fermenting sugar as a fuel source instead of using oxygen (the preferred option). Specifically, he found that sugar feeds tumors and he hypothesized that to shrink a tumor you should starve it of this very substance. While this fell out of favor and dominant theory continues to point towards genetic mutation, the new research based on this old idea is promising. “Warburg revival has allowed researchers to develop a hypothesis for how the diets that are linked to our obesity and diabetes epidemics — specifically, sugar-heavy diets — may also be driving cells to the Warburg effect and cancer.” It is likely that sugar and cancer may be prevalent theory five to ten years from now.

It is important to remember that most types of cancer develop slowly over the years. More and more research is pointing to the fact that cancer happens because people have been eating poorly and living an unhealthy lifestyle for years and THEN they get cancer. Overall lifestyle (even from a young age) is the most important factor to minimizing cancer risk.  

Some nutrition and lifestyle mantras to REVERSE cancer risk:

  • Avoid sugar as much as possible
    • Sweetened beverages
    • Soda (even artificially sweetened)
  • Don’t smoke
  • Avoid anything with corn syrup
  • Stay a healthy weight “BMI
  • Avoid processed foods
    • Processed meats
    • Processed oils, trans fats, canola oil, and vegetable oils
    • Refined “white” carbohydrates
  • Find an activity you enjoy and get some movement every day
  • Eat a variety of veggies (non starchy as much as you can) and antioxidant rich foods
  • Eat smart fats (please see the end for further reading about fats)
    • Olives and olive oil
    • Coconuts and coconut oil
    • Butter made from grass fed organic milk
    • Cacao butter
    • Raw nuts like macadamia, and pecans
    • Seeds like black sesame, cumin, pumpkin, and hemp
    • Organic pastured egg yolks
    • Avocados
    • Grass fed meats
    • Wild caught fish like salmon
    • Lard, tallow, and ghee (try and see if these agree with your system)
    • Animal based omega 3 fat like krill oil
    • Purslane
  • Watch alcohol consumption (be as moderate as you can)
  • Watch out for hormone therapy
  • Find ways to manage stress  
  • Get outside every day and expose yourself to sunlight and fresh air
  • Protect your skin from sun overexposure

Eight tips to avoid putting on too much weight during pregnancy

Start your day with protein and/or fat. DO NOT begin with a high glycemic cereal, pastry or bread. Try eggs, a protein smoothie, steelcut oats with flax and walnuts or gluten free toast with avocado and olive oil OR almond/pumpkin/sunflower nut butter. This may indeed set the tone for your entire day as it will prevent you from having a “sugar crash” from the carby/sugary things that absorb into the blood stream too fast. Watch it with the sweets, sugar, and refined carbs. No matter how much you are craving that ice cream sundae, drink a big glass of water (if you have eaten recently already) or try to eat at “real meal” first. Wait 15 minutes and if you are still dying for...

Whats the deal with Gluten free?

Gluten sensitivities pervade our society these days and are contributing to a myriad of health complaints. While some are diagnosed with Celiac disease and know well to avoid foods that contain gluten, there are still many who test negative for the disease yet are still profoundly affected. Most just feel lousy in one way or another and don’t know why. The severity of symptoms range from mild to severe and can often be subtle and insidious in nature. For example: gastrointestinal upset (constipation and/or loose stool), weight gain or inability to lose weight (especially in the abdominal area). Those without any gastrointestinal symptoms tend to notice things like skin blotchiness or irritation, fatigue, allergies and body ache. Its very tricky tracing this back to gluten. The...