Cristina Clarimón-Alinder, NC, M.Ed.
My name is Cristina Clarimón-Alinder and I am the owner of Nectar Nutrition. The idea behind Nectar grew out of necessity as much as out of a long-standing passion for food and nutrition.
I developed Celiac Disease as an infant. At the time, the disease was poorly understood and seldom diagnosed. Even though I was the typical Celiac baby failing to thrive, it took many months to get a proper diagnosis. It finally came thanks to a pediatric gastroenterologist truly ahead of his time. He recognized the symptoms as those of a clear case of pediatric Celiac Disease. Soon after that, I began to improve on the gluten free diet that he recommended.
Whether by design or by omission, that diet was abandoned as the original gastrointestinal problems disappeared. Back then, the disease was not recognized as a genetic disorder, but rather a transitory allergy that most children would “outgrow” sooner or later. By the time I was three years old, gluten had made its way back onto my daily menu and from then on nobody made a connection between my deteriorating health and Celiac Disease.
Unfortunately, with the reintroduction of gluten, many of my original symptoms lingered to a less perceptible degree: eczema, digestive distress, blepharitis, fatigue, irritability, sleep problems…They were my companions through adolescence and beyond, transforming and compounding with newer symptoms as I grew older. As a Celiac patient, I was flying under the radar and I was being treated for each one of my health complaints separately.
My diagnosis was so overlooked, so pushed aside, that I never even knew of it until decades later when I was retested due to my ongoing symptoms and complications. Only then did my Mom recall the original diagnosis as something that might be of relevance.
The appearance a few years later of a serious thyroid condition called Grave’s Disease, frequent among Celiac patients, spurred my interest in natural healing and holistic nutrition. The subsequent surgery required me to lose the entirety of my thyroid gland and to take thyroid medication for life. I wanted to know what I could do to speed up my recovery and minimize the drug’s side effects. I no longer wanted to simply manage my symptoms. I wanted to heal, to the best of my ability, from the inside out. That was when my learning began in earnest and it still continues today.