About

Mindful Benefits® provides tools and practices that enhance the way we live and encourage non-judgment, kindness, curiosity & compassion as we work towards changing longstanding habits that impact our health.
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Certified Nutritionist Lisa Schmidt at work helping clients heal

As a specialist in helping people lose excess weight & resolve digestion problems like IBS, bloating, gas, and constipation, I have helped people with food and eating issues for over 25 years. I am single-mindedly dedicated to helping you get better – and I know how you feel, for I have walked in your shoes. You are in your Second Act. I know what that is about, and I got busy when I began to approach mine. I figured out that I needed to get healthy – so I could make a difference. My Second Act is about service to others, and this is how I spend my free time:
  • I am a volunteer matchmaker- for people and dogs! I make connections between people and pets for the Arizona Humane Society and I start love affairs every week.
  • I hike and walk with my husband, Ed, and two gorgeous dogs, Dolly and Layla.
  • I earned two Masters’ of Science degrees in Nutrition and Clinical Health Psychology. I attended the internationally renowned Bastyr University and was trained as a Whole Foods Dietician. I now practice as a Certified Nutritionist (and hold a license as a CN) with special knowledge on how to activate the change process. I teach skills that promote lifelong weight loss and weight maintenance, including Mindful Eating. It really works!
  • I enjoy working with people who have challenging eating patterns. That is one reason why I am on the board of the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals.
  • I am a Certified Provider in Compassionate Bereavement care, trained in supporting those who are touched by traumatic bereavement, grief, loss, and trauma. I offer sliding scale bereavement counseling for parents who have lost children, making it possible to provide support regardless of financial resources.
  • As an instructor and researcher at Arizona State University in the School of Social Work, I am helping the next generation learn what they need to know so they can be of service to others. I teach Stress Management Tools and Sustainable Living and Mindful Eating,  mindfulness based nutrition, relaxation and life skills courses.
  • My book, Sustainable Living, Mindful Eating was published October 2015. I am teaching a  course on Mindful Eating based on my book.  It is a core course in ASU's Integrative Health Initiatives curriculum.
  • I am an expert in Mindful Eating – a way to approach food and eating that promotes a non-diet approach to weight loss. That is why I am a member and serve as content expert for The Center for Mindful Eating.
  • I am a Mindfulness Consultant, certified as a Yoga Instructor, and work as a yoga educator. My own practice of yoga and meditation extends close to thirty years.
    • I teach people how to use yoga safely to help identify feelings in their bodies, which helps them eat more intuitively and in tune with what they need. This encourages the practice of Mindful Eating. It actually has tremendous scientific evidence for its effectiveness for many health conditions, including weight loss, relief from IBS, and stress reduction. Learning how to use yoga safely in your life iImproves function.
  • I travel, visit my son in Minneapolis, attend yoga and meditation retreats, and study the ancient wisdom of Mindful Eating.
None of these things would have been possible had I not attended to my own health – and a series of health crises in my 40’s made me sit up and pay attention. I learned how to resolve my IBS for good, manage my food intolerances, keep my weight stable and in check, and improve my overall health and fitness with yoga and whole foods nutrition. These are the MINDFUL BENEFITS® which paying attention to the present moment, without judgment, promotes.  
 
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Why I work with weight loss, stress and digestive issues with Second Act clients

  I have spent my life in service to others, those who were troubled; with health problems struggling to get well. I have improved the lives of thousands; reducing their health risks while unwittingly ignoring my own…I learned how to take care of myself, and now I can teach you how to take care of yourself. I have years of experience as an executive with Weight Watchers, and I know how the diet game works. It’s designed to keep you endlessly on a diet – because research shows (and the industry knows) that 95% of all people who lose weight will gain it back – plus more.

I lost 44 pounds and kept it off for 30 years

I did lose a significant amount of weight – 44 pounds – on the Weight Watchers plan, and have kept it off for over 30 years. When working for Weight Watchers, I noticed that it was really important to keep our clients eating packaged food products, and there was not very much information about nutrition or whole, fresh foods. I was sure there was a better way to be healthy so that I could live out my Second Act on my own terms, and make a difference in the lives of others, healthy and strong.
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My Professional qualifications:

  I worked in health care for many years, and experienced first hand the dysfunctional approach of traditional medicine. I analyzed corporate budgets and saw how much money we spend as a country on costs related to weight and poor health outcomes. I sat in endless meetings with health care executives who wanted to figure out how to make more money off of sick patients, not get them well. I kept looking for an answer to how I could help more women with their weight and eating.

Real food matters

So, I went back to school to become a dietician and mental health counselor – and earned dual Masters of Science degrees in Nutrition and Clinical Health Psychology from one of the top Medical Schools in the United States. I’m not just ANY dietitian (a fancy name for a nutritionist!). I am a whole-foods based clinical nutritionist, and have learned first hand that eating real food matters. I was also trained as a mental health counselor, since it matters to me HOW people change. I learned how to help people find their own reasons and how to move through obstacles for making change – and I’m good at it. I also believe its not what you eat but HOW you eat. I’m a Certified Yoga Instructor and yoga educator, registered with the Yoga Alliance. I embrace a mindfulness practice in my own life, and have used Mindful Eating as THE WAY to manage my own weight – effortlessly, for over 25 years. I’ve learned that managing weight is complex, subtle, personal. It’s work, and it’s practice. Having a Mindful Nutritionist by your side is what you need to help you sort out what to eat, how to eat, and why it matters. PS: eating mindfully has other benefits. Practicing mindful eating helps you live your life awake, aware and alive! Every bite, just like every moment, is precious – gone in an instant, to be savored, enjoyed, lingered over. Mindful eating helps you be engaged in life, in touch with the world around you, inspired and alive. It’s a practice, and you get better and better at it. PPS: the average woman in this country spends 31 years of her life on a diet. Wouldn’t you rather start living, and stop DIEting? Other things that you should know about me include my professional career as a health care executive with a 50,000 employee hospital system, where I designed one of the most successful and progressive employee wellness programs offered. I worked at the Puget Sound VA Medical Center as a program manager for the MOVE (managing overweight veterans everywhere) program, and helped hundreds of Veterans lose weight, manage diabetes, and other medical conditions through diet and exercise. I was a therapist at a Seattle, WA community mental health agency and worked with many types of clients, helping them get better. I was an executive with Weight Watchers and designed programs and services helping thousands of customers. I was a Weight Watchers meeting leader for 15 years helping to inspire thousands of members to lose weight.
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Nutritional and Behavioral specialties

 
  • Digestive problems, especially Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
  • Binge eating disorder.
  • Diabetes.
  • Stress management.
  • Functional movement.
  • Cardiovascular Disease.
  • Gluten free and food intolerances.
  • Behavioral and nutritional management of ADHD.
  • Weight Management
Under the umbrella of Mindful Benefits® is my private practice, known as Lisa Schmidt Counseling. I am THE Mindful Nutritionist!! My devotion to improving your health and wellness is unending. I hope you will CONTACT ME for a free consultation. I promise you will feel better!