all the FAQ
Find out more about working with me
What is functional and integrative medicine?
Functional medicine addresses the root causes of disease using a systems-oriented approach, rather than on treating the symptoms alone. Functional medicine is an integrative, science-based healthcare approach that takes into account the unique genetic makeup of each person, along with internal (body & mind) and external (physical & social) factors. Integrative medicine focuses on the whole person and makes use of all appropriate therapeutic approaches, healthcare professionals and disciplines to achieve optimal health and healing. When you work with us, we use a food-as-medicine approach and consider your entire lifestyle.
Do you work with men?
As we specialize in women’s health and hormones, we do not work with men at Avocado Grove Nutrition. However, we do offer sessions and testing for male partners of our fertility clients.
Do you work with women going through perimenopause or menopause?
Not at this time.
Do you do single sessions?
No. We are simply too busy at this time and Melissa has found that the best results are achieved using 3-month packages.
Do you take insurance?
No. We do accept HSA/FSA cards and can provide invoices for you to submit to your insurance company.
Do you have an office if I want to meet you in person?
We do! We share a lovely office with Rhythms for Women acupuncture in Greenleaf Woods in Portsmouth, NH. Melissa has office hours on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.
Do you offer educational sessions to other RDs?
Not at this time.
Do you work with clients outside of the US?
No. Melissa is only credentialed in the US. NO EXCEPTIONS.
What’s the difference between a dietitian and a nutritionist or health coach?
A dietitian has received rigorous education including a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from an accredited university, 1200 hours of supervised practice, and has passed a national board examination in order to get credentialed and qualify for licensure. Additionally, continuing education hours are required in order to remain credentialed. In some states (including New Hampshire), dietitians are the only nutrition professionals who can legally give personalized nutrition advice. While many nutritionists do have some education, there are no standardized requirements to call yourself a nutritionist or health coach, and in most states there is no licensure pathway. Working with a registered dietitian is the only way to know for sure that the person you are working with has received extensive education in nutrition, biology, anatomy & physiology, food safety & science, drug & nutrient interactions, disease states, and more.
Do you work with women with thyroid disorders?
Only in the context of PCOS or fertility issues. If Hashimoto’s, hypothyroid, or Graves disease is your only diagnosis, we are not currently working with those types of patients at this time.
How does working with you work?
We offer 3-month packages for PCOS or fertility, which Melissa has determined is the optimal time needed for you to feel confident in your plan. We start with a 90-minute functional medicine and nutrition assessment where we come up with a game plan and determine the right next steps for you, which may include nutrition, supplements, testing, and lifestyle recommendations. You can meet with Melissa as little or often as you would like over the 12-week period (in person or virtual). We continue to customize your plan based on the test results we receive and your progress. We are in touch every day as Melissa reviews your digital food journals, and you can message her between sessions. Everything takes place on a HIPAA-compliant, encrypted platform.
How much do your packages cost?
We do not post prices on our website. If you are serious about gaining control of your health and fertility and interested in learning more, sign up for the waitlist to have a free 30-minute call with Melissa.
How do virtual appointments work?
We use a HIPAA-compliant, encrypted platform for all communications, including video chat appointments. You can log in using your computer or phone and it’s just like talking face to face. Most of our clients, including local clients, appreciate the convenience and the time it saves.
Do you make your clients track their food?
Melissa does not believe in counting, weighing, or measuring anything — not calories, not macros, not grams. Our digital food journal is simple — you can upload a picture through the app and Melissa reviews your entries daily, giving you real-time feedback on what you’re eating and offering actionable suggestions.