Mediaplanet What motivated you to pursue a career in holistic nutrition and fitness?

Emma Troupe: I was never someone who cared about fitness or health but once I graduated high school in 2012, I realized how unhealthy my lifestyle was. From eating gummies and deep-fried foods everyday for lunch at school, to getting NO exercise, I felt like I was in the worst shape of my life — at only 18 years of age! I decided to join the gym, and this is where my lifestyle completely changed because I instantly fell in love with exercising on a regular basis! A couple of years later, I heard about The Institute of Holistic Nutrition and the program seemed like that was exactly what I wanted to do. I made one of the best decisions of my life in deciding to study nutrition, health, and fitness.

MP: Why are probiotics so important for the immune system?

ET: In my opinion, probiotics are important because the digestive system and immune system are so closely linked! The health of your gut bacteria reflects the health of your entire body.

MP: What should people look for when choosing a probiotic?

ET: It’s important to look for a probiotic that has at least seven different strains of bacteria since each strain  has a different effect on the body and25 billion or more cells of bacteria within one capsule. It’s also important to note whether or not it must be kept refrigerated or not). Finally, the quality of the packing of the probiotics is key since probiotics are heat and light sensitive. I  love Genuine Health's Advanced Gut Probiotic, since they have several different strains. I've used it myself and have seen great results.

MP: What is one piece of advice that you would give to people looking to improve their overall health and wellness?

ET: First things first — reduce your stress. It’s something everyone can do to improve their overall health and wellness.  Stress is one of the biggest factors preventing people from reaching their fitness and/or health goals. If you're stressed out, you may not have the motivation or energy to start working on improving your health. Plus, experiencing stress everyday can have negative effects on digestion and immunity.