I met Dr. Rao in December 2013 at a Nutrition for Triathletes seminar put on by Coach Ben Bartlett (http://www.bartlettmultisport.com). Ben had invited me to speak as a professional triathlete; little did I know I’d take away a lot more than I was able to give!
Dr. Rao’s depth and breadth of knowledge on endurance athletes? nutritional needs impressed me from the moment she began to speak. I have always preferred working with medical professionals who look at the big picture; Dr. Rao has experience and qualifications that go well beyond her impressive credentials as an MD. As she described potential nutritional deficiencies athletes could face and how to address them for better performance, I couldn’t help but wonder how many little things we could change about my gut health and diet for performance improvement because of my personal health challenges and struggles with illness and injury.
I visited Dr. Rao for a full evaluation, including a battery of tests both in her office and through a lab. Based on my history and symptoms, she made an initial diagnosis and helped me to craft a plan to improve gut health . The lab results which came back several weeks later confirmed her initial diagnosis and enhanced it by giving increased detail as to the ways my body was functioning optimally and the ways it was lacking. Using this information, she added to my battery of nutritional and health practices.
Within just a couple of weeks of our initial consultation, I noticed improved energy, a reduction (and eventual elimination) of my chronic afternoon headaches, and a marked improvement in recovery from intense and long workout sessions. I attribute these improvements to the dietary changes as well as some recovery practices Dr. Rao recommended. Given how much better I feel already, I intend to maintain the basic principles of the diet (Ive learned so much about food and how to prepare it!) to continue to see improvement in my health and performance. Now in my ninth year as a professional triathlete, I can say honestly that I have never felt better. Dr. Rao is a genius!