I know what the fear and despair of chronic illness feels like. It can completely consume you. 

You worry that you may never recover and that you might remain a shadow of your former self for the rest of your life. 

You feel frustrated, isolated and alone. 

Your future feels uncertain. Every day is a struggle and no one understands.

You’ve tried everything and nothing seems to work. Sometimes you feel like giving up. 

I completely understand… because this was me 15 years ago.

Nobody should have to suffer the way I did.

My passion for health and wellbeing followed nearly 10 years of chronic illness where I suddenly collapsed in a dismal heap and was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), also known as Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME). I was completely debilitated and every single moment of my life felt like a self-defeating struggle. Over the years, I was diagnosed with a range of other unexplainable & seemingly incurable conditions and eventually, I had to resign from my much-loved career in Special Education and embrace the idea that I had to look for the answers to my own recovery deep within. Many years later, I experienced the exact same symptom set and finally discovered that Toxic Mould Illness – a multi-system, multi-symptom illness had been the culprit all along.

Hi, I’m Leisa

I love to inspire others to take their health into their own hands and… I aim to infuse hope in the hearts of those who may be feeling overwhelmed and debilitated by chronic illness like I was.

My health issues started when I moved into a brand new water-damaged building.

I was a physical, cognitive and emotional mess.

My entire body ached. Walking to my letterbox was like running an endurance marathon and the smallest of tasks seemed like hurdles in a race I was never going to win. I experienced intense stomach cramps and it was as though my entire digestive system had ceased to function. I felt like I was allergic to everything. Eventually, I was only able to eat a ridiculously small selection of foods without looking six months pregnant! To add to my accumulating overwhelm, many doctors & specialists told me that they couldn’t help me and that I would probably never recover.

There was no pill that could ‘fix’ me… there were no treatment options… and there was no ‘cure’. 

Why did I end up with gut issues?

It can be hard to pinpoint exactly, as it’s usually multiple factors. Here is my theory on what contributed:

Mould. I moved into a brand new home where the plumber had left the test cap in and all 3 levels flooded with water and raw sewage. After the ‘clean up’, I couldn’t see any visible mould or smell any musty odours and so I thought I was safe… but I wasn’t.

Trauma. I experienced unexpected, unavoidable and ongoing trauma that resulted in C-PTSD (Complex PTSD). This triggered a SIBO and SIFO relapse. I learnt that trauma can completely shut down your gut.

Appendicitis and other surgeries. I had my appendix removed when I was a small child and also had other abdominal surgeries which I believe may have impaired my ileocecal valve function and intestinal motility.

Antibiotics and other medications. I took a lot of antibiotics when I was a child for repeat sinus, throat and chest infections. I also took the contraceptive pill for a few years. I believe that these medications damaged my gut lining and my microbiome.

How I lost hope and faith in the medical system.

After going from doctor to doctor and spending tens of thousands of dollars on my health, I eventually came to realise that if conventional medicine couldn’t help me, that I would have to help myself. I stopped being a victim, stopped looking for answers outside of myself, chose to empower myself & took my health into my own hands. I became my own barefoot doctor and embarked on a journey of self-empowered health. This is when I knew that one thing wasn’t going to ‘fix’ or ‘cure’ me, but that a holistic approach was going to heal and completely change me. I finally accepted that a ‘magic pill’ did not exist & that my recovery was up to me.

Changing my mindset was an essential part of my recovery.

My spiritual journey changed how I expereinced dis-ease.

It was through my spiritual journey, that I realised that I’d been struggling with and fighting my illness for way too long. I was so focused on hating it and wanting to get rid of it, that I became obsessed with dis-ease and all the possible things that could go wrong with my body. I knew I had to stop fighting my illness and therefore myself. I realised that I had to accept, appreciate and even love the illness that had caused me so much heartache, suffering & pain… and this is when everything changed.

This spiritual shift towards acceptance and love enabled me to more consciously and confidently choose what I put into and onto my body. I became acutely aware of the immense medicinal capacity of food and the famous Hippocrates quote, “let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”, became my new mantra. At first, I couldn’t believe the massive impact that food had on my health and wellbeing… both positive and negative.

It became clearly evident to me that what I ate could either feed or poison me.

Food could either leave me feeling energised and active or exhausted and in pain.

Leisa with prayer hands

This led me to my next discovery & yet another Hippocrates quote, “all dis-ease begins in the gut”. I decided to learn about gut health and the vast implications of the microbiome. I discovered that naturally-occurring food chemicals were wreaking havoc with my gut, body and life. Words such as Salicylates, Histamines, Nightshades and Oxalates became a part of my daily vocabulary as I experimented with various elimination diets. I eventually identified my own unique thresholds and ‘safe’ foods. This allowed me to be able to enjoy a wider variety of foods, without experiencing any of the nasty allergies, sensitivities and intolerances that once left me feeling manic and miserable.

I was surprised to discover that by changing what I ate, I could significantly reduce my symptoms.

I started digging deeper, reading everything I could about gut health.

I studied with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and became a Certified Health Coach. I then decided to further my studies and niche in the area of gut health. I had the absolute pleasure of training with Donna Gates (the founder of Body Ecology) and also became a Level 2 Certified Body Ecology Coach.

I’m an educator at heart and I love to teach and learn. Following the completion of my Master of Special Education (where I specialised in Autism), I had begun preparing for my PhD when I was first struck down with Toxic Mould Illness, also known as Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS). While I was initially diagnosed with CFS, it wasn’t until I was exposed to a second water damaged building that the real reason behind the chronic illness that plagued my life for so long was finally revealed. Toxic mould severely impaired my digestion and cognition. While it was devastating for me to have to leave my prior career, I now redirect my enthusiasm for teaching, learning and research into my passion for gut health and helping others.

As a part of my own professional development, I’m committed to learning everything I can about the gut (and the microbiome). I’ve completed annual training since 2014 with Donna Gates, where we expand our knowledge of the Body Ecology ‘way of life’ and take a deep dive into the world of Nutritional Genomics. I also had the great honour of working intimately with world-renowned Genomics and Methylation expert Carolyn Ledowsky, where Gen and I completed her 7 Week Practitioner Mastermind in 2020. Other experts I have had a chance to learn with include Dr Allison Siebecker, Dr Jason Hawrelak, Dr Nirala Jacobi, Dr Sandeep Gupta, and many more.

I pride myself on being a lifelong learner and I’m a self-confessed podcast, health summit and health seminar ‘geek’. 😉

My Qualifications

Master Special Education:

Griffith University

(Queensland, Australia)

Gut Training with Experts:

Donna Gates (Body Ecology), Dr Nirala Jacobi (SIBO Dr), Carolyn Ledowsky (MTHFR Support AUS), Dr Sandeep Gupta (Mould Illness Made Simple, Mastering Complex & Sensitive Patient).

ThetaHealing Practitioner:

Basic & Advanced DNA, DNA 3, Intuitive Anatomy, Manifesting & Abundance, World Relations, Game of Life, Dig Deeper.

Health Coach:

Graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition

Certified Body Ecology Coach Level 2

If you believe that anything is possible,

it will be. 

You Can Feel Better

If my story sparks even the slightest feeling of hope within you, then I’m one step closer to helping you allow more health and wellbeing into your life. I love seeing women start to feel more empowered about their health and embrace the idea that they are in the driver’s seat of their own health journey.

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