Melissa Hozack, president and CEO of TruMe Whole Health and co-owner of Redcliff Pharmasave, is featured on the November-December issue of Pharmacy Practise + Business.
Hozack, a pharmacist by trade, has been working in the field of therapeutic nutrition for the past nine years. She first began researching the topic when she embarked on her own weight loss journey.
“I had 100 pounds I wanted to lose,” Hozack told the News. “I didn’t realize it was that much at the time.”
In order to lose the weight in a safe and healthy way, Hozack had to make lifestyle changes. After completing her weight loss goals, she wanted to share what she had learned with others.
“I’ve helped 1,150 people now,” she said. Inside the store she has a board she updates daily with the total number of pounds her patients have lost over the past nine years. On Wednesday, that number passed 47,000.
Hozack now works full-time coaching individuals on how they can best make healthy choices, not only to kickstart weight loss, but to also improve overall health. Her main focus is on low-carb nutrition, however she works with each patient to create a program to fit their needs.
“We call it therapeutic nutrition, so we’re actually looking at food as medicine,” she said. “It’s not just a diet; it really is a lifestyle.”
As well as coaching, Hozack works as president and CEO of TruMe Whole Foods, a company which makes products that encourage healthy nutrition and living.
“I just couldn’t find some of the things I wanted necessarily (in food), so that’s kind of where I came up with the idea of TruMe,” Hozack said. “And (I thought) maybe other people were looking for the same thing.”
TruMe offers a range of products, including amino acids, Stevia drops, essential oils, a mint oil roller, shakers and spice blends, available at 165 locations throughout Canada and the U.S.
“Hopefully by the end of 2021, we’re going to have 30 different products. We’ve got lots of launches coming up,” said Hozack.
In an effort to keep patients focused on health goals, Hozack often adds interactive elements to her programs. She has challenged patients to create new recipes using TruMe products and encourages them to share posts celebrating their weigh loss and health results. This week her patients will complete a 12-week ‘Amazing Race’ event, in which they have to visit sites around the city while following a low-carb lifestyle. The goal is to lose 25 pounds in the 12 weeks.
Hozack oversees a group of more than 500 people, some of whom are active patients of hers, and some of whom have already completed her program. Hozack believes her patients gain hope through the programs, activities and groups.
“We care about your health. Pharmacists have always been the most accessible health-care professionals because you can always just walk in and ask for advice, we can help you out with a lot of things that way. That’s really what TruMe Whole Health is about. We just want to try to reach people and help get them healthy,” she said.
TruMe products can be found at a variety of locations throughout Redcliff and Medicine Hat, including Pharmasave, Nutters, Co-op and Source for Sports.
KENDALL KING, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Medicine Hat News