March 2, 2009
The Hudson Reporter
By Kate Rounds
For Inna Topiler, it all started with feeling lousy.
“I was working in finance, there was high stress, long hours, and I started developing health concerns—breakouts, acne, headaches every day,” she relates. “I was fatigued. I’d go to work, then go home and go to bed, and I was only 24 years old!”
Not willing to take this lying down, Topiler visited a round of doctors. “They ran tests, and nothing came back,” she says. “Everything was normal. They gave me stimulants, painkillers, and antidepressants but I wasn’t depressed. I didn’t know that much about health, so I took them like a good little patient, but I got worse.”
After a year and half of this, she had to try something different and landed in the office of a clinical naturopath. “This is similar to a clinical nutritionist,” she says. “They try to find out the root cause of the problem instead of using the Band-Aid approach. He talked about eating. I was a junk-food junkie. I was eating tons of sugar, and that’s why there was an imbalance.”
After about six months of eating healthy foods, such as fresh vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein and avoiding yeast and glutens, Topiler started to feel better.
And the rest is history
Topiler says that even though she had a degree in business, she wasn’t in love with her finance job. Not only was she feeling better, but she found she was very involved in her nutritional therapy. “I went back to school,” she says, “and got a Masters in human nutrition. When I graduated I tried working for doctors, but they have their own ways and often don’t want a nutritionist. I started helping friends, friends started telling friends, and I opened an office in New York. Many of my clients lived in Jersey, and when I told them I lived in Hoboken, they urged me to see them there. When the home office became too busy, I opened an office there as well.”
In the reception area of Complete Nutrition and Wellness are boxes of Celestial Seasonings tea and a soothing stone fountain. Her office is jam-packed with bottles of supplements.
While most doctors have only a few minutes to see patients, Topiler spends an hour on the first consultation, discussing health concerns and diet. When test results come back, “I go over them line by line,” she says. The first consultation is $135, with $80 follow-ups. She does not take health insurance.
Treatment includes supplements, herbs, and hair analysis, which she says reveals information on vitamins, minerals, metabolic rate, thyroid and adrenal gland function, and metals. “It’s more accurate than blood tests,” she says.
Balance is the key ingredient, which comes into play with food fads. “Soy in moderation is OK,” she says, “but too much can cause too much estrogen in the body.”
Topiler says you can eat right even if you’re not the best cook in the world. “Busy professionals don’t have time to cook,” she acknowledges. “You can read labels and avoid high-fructose corn syrup, trans fats, and refined grains. You can buy things readymade in health-food stores, and make healthy choices in restaurants such as chicken, vegetables, and small pasta portions.”
Topiler’s clients range in age from 21 to 70 and are about 65 percent women.
“I was a junk-food junkie.”—Inna Topiler
Her goal, she says, is to get people off medications. “I’ve seen people who are taking Ambien five times a week,” she says.
Topiler sees her job as detective work. “There are hidden food allergies,” and sickness is “not caused by one thing,” she says. “The food industry puts so many chemicals in everything—hydrogenated oils, preservatives, not many natural things. If it doesn’t exist in nature, the body doesn’t like it, and it causes problems.”
Complete Nutrition and Wellness
80 Park Avenue