My name is Marie Sckocheva, and I am one of the co-founders of Yez! Foods, LLC.
My background is neither in nutrition nor in cooking, but rather in psychology and neuroscience.
I graduated high school at 16, and then went on to college. I went to UCSD and received my bachelor’s degree in human development with a focus on neuroscience. I went to graduate school at Columbia University and received my master’s degree. During both my academic career and my professional career, I spent a lot of time researching brain health. While conducting a lot of this research, I began to understand how important the brain and gut health connection was. Especially when the research was related to neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and neurodevelopment disorders.
Having an education that was mostly hard science, I tended to be extremely skeptical that diets could really affect that much.
The first occasion was during the summer of 2017, I was having extremely bad stomach problems, and my doctor wasn’t sure the cause. Countless tests were run, and I was prescribed lots of different medications. I ended up switching to a paleo diet, and my stomach problems resolved. Beyond my stomach getting better, I noticed a change in my moods, sleep habits and energy level. I really did feel better on paleo. That is when I first started to notice a change in overall health with diet.
The second instance that I truly started to believe that diet made a difference was when I wanted to wean off the medication I was prescribed for anxiety. It was initially meant to be a temporary medication to get my panic attacks under control, but I ended up on the medication for two years. Coming from my neuroscience background I knew that there had been some research suggesting that Keto can help reduce anxiety. I decided that since paleo helped me before, I could try keto as a way of aiding my weaning off process. I was pleasantly surprised at how much keto did help me get off the medication. Within two months, I was fully off the heavy sedatives I was physically and mentally dependent on for 2 years. I found that keto helped my life in many ways, I had more energy, I slept better, my moods got better and I was finally able to lessen my anxiety. Keto wasn’t a fad diet for me, it was a way of life. One thing that often had me breaking keto was the lack of products on the market that tasted like true baked goods. I searched high and low and was never truly able to find a good bread or cookie substitute.
This is what led me to help create Yez! Foods. I believe that Yez’s products can help you maintain your diet and stick to your goals, no matter what they are.