My name is Christine Morgenstern Shin, and I am a functional nutrition practitioner, therapeutic movement specialist, and mindset resilience coach. I’ve delved deep into the plethora of eastern and western wellness practices during my career.
No two individuals are alike: we each have our own life stories, body constitutions, and deeply-ingrained ways of being. Each human is such a wonderfully complex and unique mosaic, and that same complexity means that when it comes to wellness, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. True healing and wellness can’t come from a magic pill or a ten-minute doctor visit once a year; it is an individual journey that requires deeply personal, individualized care. Early on, I saw the necessity of drawing from several complementary disciplines so that I could best provide that care and meet the diverse wellness needs of my many clients.
It’s been a long road building my expertise in these fields, but my clients’ results speak for themselves. I’ve helped hundreds of individuals reclaim sovereignty over their health; they now live lives of thriving energy, robustness, and mental clarity beyond their wildest dreams. I feel deeply blessed to empower people to take charge of their wellness and make it last for life; this is my life’s purpose for the last 20+ years. I never would have found that purpose, however, if I hadn’t spent years fighting my own desperate battles with illness.
The Beginning – Endless Energy & Performance
I am grateful that most of my life has been happy, healthy and fulfilling. I always manage to fall into some unexpected adventure and have genuine love and friendship in my life. Simultaneously, I had hidden the deep daily pain of enduring 20+ years of depression and anxiety.
From the outside, I was the textbook definition of success. I had a highly driven career as a consultant in the fitness industry. I worked out religiously, many times, twice a day, did Crossfit, and ran my mental engine on a seemingly endless supply of go-getter energy. I defined myself by my ambition and any time I doubted that identity, I could look back at a long string of conquered goals. My intense workload just fueled me even more; to me, “workaholic” was just a word used by people who didn’t have the grit to make their dreams a reality. And then one day my perfect little world started to fray at the seams.
It was slow at first; the tiniest little cognitive and physical hiccups. I would get unusually bloated after a big meal and laugh it off to my partner: “Look, honey; a food baby!” A cloudy, confused feeling would occasionally creep into my brain, disrupting my thoughts and causing me to forget the word I intended to use. I dismissed that as well. Then the symptoms got too severe for me to ignore. For half a day, I completely lost sight in my left eye. What was scarier is that the Ophthalmologist didn’t have any answers for me. My sight returned, but the same thing happened a year and a half later. The bloating and brain fog got worse, as well as the nerve and joint pain. Once a heavy sleeper, the peaceful nights morphed from a restoration I looked forward to, into years of insomnia.
During this period, I saw over seven doctors and specialists and received no answers from any of them. I did an MRI, ultrasound, and sonogram to no avail. Almost worse than the mystery of it all was how I was treated by these practitioners. After seeing no negative results from their diagnostic tools, they looked at me and my complaints as if I was crazy. I received no validation or empathy from these professionals; I felt unseen, unheard, and completely alone in my illness. (It's important for me to express I acknowledge there are many outstanding physicians and I actively collaborate with compassionate doctors whom I respect greatly; however, this was unfortunately my experience.)
It was around this time my husband and I moved to Dallas and then California. Over the course of six years, my symptoms worsened with each move. By this point, I had joint pain that was so severe that my body would lock up if I stayed still for too long. Keeping my mattress on the floor helped so I could painfully crawl from my bed to the bathroom. Work was out of the question, although I fought that fact and fell deeper into depression. For someone who had built her whole identity on career achievement and physical fitness, my sense of self was completely shattered. I felt deep shame at my inability to regain my health through hard work, the way I’d always achieved my goals. The first time in my life, I was jobless, helpless, and all out of answers -- or so I thought.
The Middle – Hope appears through Despair
At my lowest point, I discovered a functional medicine practitioner and, for the first time in years, I remembered what hope felt like. Functional medicine is a holistic approach that aims to address root causes, not just treat symptoms. It is through that lens that functional doctors are often able to diagnose ailments that a conventional approach misses. I was diagnosed with Lyme disease, three Lyme coinfections, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, dental cavitations and mold toxicity from living in the presence of toxic mold for 9 years in my old home without realizing it.
Those were some very grave diagnoses; my healing journey took years and had many ups and downs. The short version is that I didn’t just heal; I got better than I’d ever felt in my life. In 2015, I was able to safely titrate off of 20+ years of depression, ADHD and birth control meds. Much of this was due to the dietary, lifestyle, herbal, and medicinal interventions of my various functional doctors. My progress inspired me: I took my healing into my own hands, reading every functional medicine book and taking every course I could before deciding to go back to school. I wanted to fully understand this fascinating new world of healing that was doing so much more for me than any conventional method had. I highly value allopathic medicine; however, I've learned many chronic health conditions are better served through functional, lifestyle or eastern medicines.
I would never have healed the way I did, however, without discovering yoga and ancient eastern healing traditions. I started yoga as a way to ease myself back into physical fitness as my symptoms improved, and quickly became obsessed. As I delved deeper into my research on yoga, I discovered practices like visualization, manifestation, and meditation. I realized there was an entire discipline of yoga beyond just poses on a mat. I discovered a holistic yoga therapy that applied millennia-old healing practices that worked on the emotional, mental, and spiritual dimensions as well as the physical. I found that these ancient practices meshed perfectly with the modern functional medicine I was studying.
Most importantly, I was able to discover an entirely new part of myself as I deepened my knowledge of yoga therapy. I’d struggled with intense anxiety, life-threatening depression, and ADHD in my youth, and believed that I’d solved all that by building my castle of high achievement. When I had all that achievement stripped away by illness, I was forced to confront the fact that I’d never truly resolved those deep issues. Through yoga therapy, I learned how to become present in my own body, and how to harness the brain’s powers of manifestation for real, lasting healing. Most importantly, though, I finally discovered my authentic self. I experienced not just physical, but spiritual and emotional healing.
A New Beginning – Living Authentically, Serving with Purpose
The world is full of ailing people, people in despair who have gotten no clear answers and feel alone and lost in the dark. I know, because I was one of them. Maybe you resonate with my story and are reading this now. Though my journey was difficult, it led me to dive deep into an understanding of functional medicine, neuroscience, yoga therapy, and brain health. I’ve now been applying that huge breadth of knowledge in my own practice for over 20 years, and I get miraculous results.
No one should have to suffer as long as I did; I am here to shortcut the process and give people the answers they seek. Though I serve clients with a multitude of conditions, I specialize in working with recovering overachievers like myself. In modern society, there is no shortage of people whose anxiety has manifested as illness, just like it did with me. I am here to help you enhance your health, find peace, and most importantly reconnect with your authentic self in the process. My guidance flows from a highly-individualized plan that draws from multiple wells of wisdom. I then empower the individual to take charge of their wellness for life: a life of emotional peace, mental clarity, and physical vigor. We all have the power to claim that life. Let me show you how.