Nova: A Health and Wellness Center That Arose By Itself – Yucatan Magazine | Directory Mayhem

Fernanda Toler goes to the market in Santiago every day to fill her fruit bowl with healthy food. Photo: Lee Steele / Yucatán Magazine

Fernanda Toler’s road to the Yucatán was long and winding.

But once she got here, her health and wellness business took care of itself.

Born and raised in Brazil, Fernanda moved to the United States in her early 20s. She ended up living in Denver for around 20 years. Her time there, including running a pizza restaurant with her then-husband for 10 years, taught her a great deal about the business. But she also learned something else.

Fernanda Toler goes to the market in Santiago every day to fill her fruit bowl with healthy food. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht / Yucatán Magazine

“You can get into a pattern of too much work,” says Fernanda. “It taught me that balance is everything.”

“All this work and I don’t know how to take care of myself,” Fernanda recalls. “I was just in that pattern, you know, just make sure you work, work, work, make money, and later in life I can enjoy the fruits of my labor.”

Then, at 33, came the wake-up call. She was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer, which required chemotherapy and radiation.

Fernanda Toler goes to the market in Santiago every day to fill her fruit bowl with healthy food. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht / Yucatán Magazine

What she did next might have saved her life. She found support from her family in Brazil. She gave up sniffing for fast food, including, yes, the pizza that was always within reach. And she began to adopt a healthy lifestyle.

“My mother was the cook, you know. Every time I’ve had chemo, I’ve had my most nutritious, most delicious meal,” says Fernanda. Two aunts, one a nurse, made sure she had everything she needed. She engaged in active, outside activities, such as singing and dancing classes – something that’s widely recommended to keep your mind off your feet.

Fernanda Toler has beaten breast cancer and is now sharing her healthy habits with the public in a new wellness shop. Photo: Courtesy

“I’m a different person,” says Fernanda.

Their operation, Nova Health and Wellness, is described as an integrative health and wellness center designed to balance health, body and mind. Through retreats, workshops and consultations, Nova guides clients towards better habits and an improved mindset. Her network brings together medical professionals, nutritionists and holistic practitioners, a response to what she criticizes as an overly compartmentalized healthcare system.

And for clients as intrigued by Mérida as she is, Fernanda has a wellness package that includes help with property searches, another area she is well versed in.

Fernanda Toler goes to the market in Santiago every day to fill her fruit bowl with healthy food. Photo: Carlos Rosado van der Gracht / Yucatán Magazine

Her own airy and immaculate property in Santiago is newly built and features a spacious kitchen perfect for cooking demonstrations she plans. The bowl in the middle of the island is always filled with seasonal fruits from the Mercado a few blocks away. She’s a familiar face at the market, where she also buys fresh juices.

Between the workshops and broader programs, Nova can be a resource for residents and vacationers.

“For people who want to come here on vacation, let’s say for a week, we’ll have someone to teach them how to cook, what to buy, how to shop,” Fernanda explains, saying she’s good sources has for high-quality meat, vegetables and fruit. “For people who are already here, we will have the workshops every month.”

Seven-day packages include a private rental home and are then customized. For example, a woman over 40 will be outfitted with lab tests to check for things like blood cell biometrics, lipid and liver profiles, and ultrasound. This is accompanied by holistic work with an Ayurveda therapist, a 1 hour full body massage, two tours, a choice of activities such as yoga or workout, consultation and a private chef or food delivery.

In other words, the healing combination of practices that worked so well for Fernanda during these trying times in Brazil.

Learn more at Nova Health and Wellness.

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