IAM1844 – Nutrition Expert Helps Others Manage Their Health and Improve Their Wellness

Podcast Interview with Elizabeth Shaw

Why it was selected for “CBNation Architects”:

In the episode of CEO Podcasts featuring Elizabeth Shaw, she discusses her journey as a nutrition expert and how she helps others manage their health and improve their wellness. Here are some additional highlights from the episode:

Elizabeth's Background: She explains her background in nutrition and how she became passionate about breaking down complex nutrition science into simple, actionable steps for everyday people. Elizabeth is committed to helping others understand the role of wholesome food in achieving optimal health.

The Importance of Balance: Elizabeth emphasizes the importance of finding a balance between work and personal life. She believes that taking care of oneself and making time for self-care activities is crucial for overall well-being and productivity.

Challenges Faced: Elizabeth discusses some of the challenges she has faced throughout her career, including establishing herself in a highly competitive industry and navigating the ever-changing landscape of nutrition science. She shares how she overcame these challenges by staying true to herself and constantly seeking knowledge to provide the best advice to her clients.

Her CEO Mindset: According to Elizabeth, being a CEO means empowering others and fostering a sense of community. She believes in leading by example and creating a supportive environment where everyone can thrive and achieve their health goals.

Resources and Books: Elizabeth mentions two books she has authored – “Fertility Foods Cookbook+” and “The Stress-Free IVF Nutrition Guide.” These resources provide valuable information and guidance for individuals who are looking to optimize their nutrition for fertility and during the IVF process.

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Elizabeth Shaw Teaser 00:00

I make things so approachable and I rely on evidence-based science, but put it in a very digestible form that most people can understand. So I think that relatability is huge. If you can be more authentic, I know that word is kind of cliche and thrown around, but my secret sauce is just being real.

I think that's one of the 100% things that you can do is just be real.

Intro 00:21

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview?

If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you are in search of.

This is the I AM CEO podcast.

Gresham Harkless 00:48

Hello, hello, hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast and I appreciate you listening to this episode. If you've been listening this year, you know that we hit 1600 episodes at the beginning of this year. We're doing something a little bit different where we're repurposing our favorite episodes around certain categories, topics, or as I like to call them business pillars that we think are going to be extremely impactful for CEOs, entrepreneurs, and business owners, or what I like to call the CB nation architects who are looking to level up their organizations.

This month, we are focused on leadership, management, and coaching. When we think of leadership, management, and coaching, we often think of doing all of the things, but often it's the person that's able to build up their team, that's able to cultivate a creative and innovative culture so that people can excel and actually be their own leaders. So that's why this month we're focusing on those three big topics because they make a huge impact on the organizations that we're part of.

Now you'll hear some of those topics this month, of course, some really great perspectives on how people are even defining leadership, which I think is extremely exciting. So sit back and enjoy this special episode of the I AM CEO podcast.

Hello. Hello. Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast. I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Elizabeth Shaw of Shaw Simple Swaps. Elizabeth, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Elizabeth Shaw 02:08

Thank you so much for having me. I'm excited to be here.

Gresham Harkless 02:10

No problem. Super excited to have you on. What I wanted to do was just read a little bit more about Elizabeth so you can hear about all the awesome things that she's doing.

Elizabeth Shaw is a national nutrition expert and bestselling author who works as a freelance consultant, spokesperson, and nutrition professor in San Diego.

Her passion for breaking down the science-based facts into digestible sound bites has led her to what she loves doing the most, helping others understand the important role wholesome food can play in managing their health and improving their wellness one bite at a time.

You can find Liz writing on her website, or sharing her delicious simple swap meals over on her handle Shaw Simple Swaps on social media. Elizabeth, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

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Elizabeth Shaw 02:56

I am. I am. You can feel free to call me Liz. A lot of people just go by Liz, so.

Gresham Harkless 03:01

Okay. Awesome. Awesome. Liz, I'm super excited to have you on the show. I wanted to ask you my favorite question, which is your CEO story. Can you tell us what led you to get started with your business?

Elizabeth Shaw 03:11

Absolutely. So I've been very interested in the nutrition field ever since I was a teenager. So I actually saw a dietitian when I was 13 years old and having a one-on-one experience with her. I knew that's exactly what I wanted to do with my career. So flash forward 10 years, I finished my master's, I finished a couple of specialization programs during my graduate work and I was an RD. I had my master's in nutrition. I was working on my personal training licensure. I'm just living all things health and wellness.

So I jumped into my first job as a manager, managing almost 32 employees. And as a 20 something year old managing people in all different walks of life, all different ages, It's was great experience to recognize, what it takes to build and bring a group together and have an organizational structure above you.

But at the same time, it gave me a nice piece into what it would take to eventually run my own business. So I dabbled in a few other jobs for about three to four years. And then my last job I had quite the experience as everyone I'm sure has their stories with the supervisors. I just realized if I'm doing all the work as a supervisor, but getting paid as an employee, why am I not running and being the CEO of my own business?

So I took the leap. I had a lot of support from my husband. In 2014, I came back and decided I was going to take the leap and just run my own business. And here I am today, five years and six figures down the line. I'm loving what I do.

Gresham Harkless 04:41

Nice. I love that. And it's so funny that you say that because a lot of times people probably are listening or saying that you're running your own business without getting all the accolades with running your own business just because you're doing so much sometimes in the jobs and in places that we are that the only next step we need to do is actually sometimes just take that leap.

Elizabeth Shaw 05:00

Yeah. And I will say, I know what a challenge it can be and I know that there's a lot of ducks you have to get in a row, but luckily I had my ducks in a row and it just felt like the right time and it turned out to be.

Gresham Harkless 05:10

Nice. I definitely appreciate that. So I wanted to drill down a little bit deeper, hear a little bit more about Shaw Simple Swaps. I want to make sure I say that three times fast, but I want to make sure I hit that.

Elizabeth Shaw 05:21

Should I have gone back with a simpler name? And I was like, you know what? Simple Swaps is what it comes down to. I'm going to talk about health and wellness. I have to make it manageable for the average person out there. And that's what it comes down to is simple swaps. And so what small manageable changes can you make day to day in your life to just live the healthiest, most vibrant life you can.

So under this umbrella, I work a lot as you mentioned as a national spokesperson. I love public speaking. I speak at a lot of conferences related to nutrition, health moms actually specialize in fertility nutrition, which is a little bit of a minority when it comes to the health field. So, I do a lot with moms and males trying to conceive people of all different walks of life who just want to bring a baby into the world.

I have 2 books that I've been an Amazon bestselling author with. And so, it's fun because I have a lot of different things that I do under my umbrella, but it's nice to connect with that small community because, one in eight people actually struggle with fertility issues. So having programs and offerings and different material that I can provide for them is super helpful.

Gresham Harkless 06:27

Yeah, I definitely bet that is, especially like you touched on to a lot of times when you want to make any type of change or improvements or whatever you need to do to get to whatever your goal might be. Sometimes you think that you have to do a wholesale change, but it sounds like from your name and everything that you're doing, you're saying that there are like little small things that you can to make those improvements.

Elizabeth Shaw 06:47

It is, you know, and I'm actually working on a big program launch for 2020, and I can fill you in on the scoop. You guys are the very first ones getting it, but it's actually called BYOB, Build Your Own Body. Because I think so often we're misconstrued in the media as seeing, hearing that you should go gluten-free, you should go soy free, you need to be vegan, you need to be paleo, you need to be all these things, when it's heck, why don't you just build your own body and build what you want to build?

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Follow the program that you want to build with, the advice of a professional who actually has the knowledge and the information behind these different programs. So, it's not a one-size-fits-all all approach and that's why I'm excited to BYOB in 2020.

Gresham Harkless 07:22

Nice. Yeah, that's definitely exciting, especially in this day and age. Like you said, there are so many of the kind of external factors that say you have to do this. You have to go gluten-free. You have to go dairy-free. You have to do this or that.

But it sounds like all those are just tools that you use it in having your arsenal, depending on whatever your B. Y. O. B. Whatever you want your body to be and then you start to work backwards from there.

Elizabeth Shaw 07:42

Exactly, exactly.

Gresham Harkless 07:44

Nice. So you might have already touched on this, but I wanted to ask you for what I call your secret sauce. This is the thing that you feel like sets you or your organization apart that makes you unique.

Elizabeth Shaw 07:53

Yeah, I think touching into that simple swaps is that even when I work with one of my clients, California Avocados, there are a lot of health influencers out there. There's a lot of dietitians. But what makes it exciting to work with my clients and why I truly believe they like coming back and working with me is that, I make things so approachable and I rely on evidence-based science, but put it in a very digestible form that most people can understand.

So I think that relatability is huge. And if you can be more authentic, I know that word is kind of cliche and thrown around, my secret sauce is just being real. I think that's one of the 100% things that you could do is just be real.

Gresham Harkless 08:32

Absolutely. I always usually say nobody can beat you at your own race if you're being authentic, if you're being yourself. And I think sometimes, again, from those external polls, we're believed that we need to be this or we need to be that.

But I think you can always win because you're running your own race and nobody can run your race like you can if you're being authentic to yourself.

Elizabeth Shaw 08:49


Gresham Harkless 08:51

Nice. I wanted to switch gears a little bit and I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. This might be an app, book or a habit that you have, but it's something that makes you more effective and efficient.

Elizabeth Shaw 09:01

I think one of the best things that I equipped myself very early on, even before I took the leap and the risk to own my own business was forming a mastermind group. So there are different, websites, there are different conferences and symposiums. But I actually just you know, with different networking events I had been to, I formed a group with like-minded professionals, not within my same field, but just in the CEO wanting to run and manage their own life and their own business.

That has been instrumental in helping me keep abreast. And, the latest technologies and the latest gadgets and this and that and everything and just keeping me on track. So I would say find your tribe and make sure that they help nurture you and lift you up because I think that's something super important on this journey.

Gresham Harkless 09:44

Yeah, absolutely, especially with entrepreneurship and running a business that could sometimes feel so lonely. But did you find that there was definitely a lot of benefits to having people outside of your industry as well to bounce ideas off of?

Elizabeth Shaw 09:54

Absolutely. Because I think as a health professional it becomes a little saturated when you're only talking to people with your lenses on. So having someone who's a therapist and an accountant in my group was just super helpful to see what I was imagining from a different lens.

Gresham Harkless 10:11

Yeah, absolutely. And I think that's definitely one of the benefits of having a mastermind or even a team with people with different and varied histories and perspectives that a lot of times it can make you a lot stronger because you have those different perspectives that kind of bounce ideas off of think through different ideas and so on and so forth.

You can only sometimes do that by being outside of yourself or having people close to you that are not sometimes always thinking like you.

Elizabeth Shaw 10:34


Gresham Harkless 10:36

Nice. I wanted to ask you now for what I call a CEO nugget. This is a word of wisdom or a piece of advice or if you can hop into a time machine, what would you tell your younger business self?

Elizabeth Shaw 10:47

Oh, gosh. I think that there are so many things I would tell myself. The first thing I would tell myself is that your passion is going to be important to fuel your flame. But sometimes you have to deviate to some degree. That doesn't mean throwing in the towel on your initial spark, but you have to learn to roll with the punches.

I think, I was so narrow-minded at the beginning that I wanted to do this specific subset and then as I started evolving and opening my mind and my ideas to more expansive ideas within my practice, it really helped me grow into what I am today. So I would say, keep an open mind is probably one of the best things that you could do for yourself when starting a business.

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Gresham Harkless 11:29

Yeah, absolutely. I think that's really, really hard to do sometimes because like you said, if you really have that passion and that fire, that's burning to do something, but understanding, I think, and correct me if I'm wrong, I find this myself is that sometimes I really have to do some of the work or have that space to really understand why I want to do.

You know exactly what it is that I do. And sometimes there are other alternatives that I never thought about doing, but I was just so focused on, I want to do it this way that I can sometimes miss opportunities that are around.

Elizabeth Shaw 11:58

Exactly. I think that's very well said.

Gresham Harkless 12:01

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Now I wanted to ask you another one of my absolute favorite questions, which is definition of what it means to be a CEO. We're hoping to have different quote and quote CEOs on this show.

So Liz, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Elizabeth Shaw 12:13

Yeah, I think being a CEO in this new, I actually have a one-year-old, being a CEO is being able to eat breakfast with my daughter every day. It's being able to say yes and say no to the things that bring me joy, that bring me an income that bring me just a lot of enthusiasm. It also as a dietitian means being a certified eating officer. So I make that joke. My husband is known as Mr. CEO all over my blog, my social handles.

You just have to have fun with it. So I think being a CEO also means having structure but being able to laugh a little.

Gresham Harkless 12:49

Yeah, absolutely. I love that just because you can paint that picture for what you want in your life. Just as you mentioned with the B.Y.O.B. Is that a lot of times as a business, if you want to make sure that you're spending time with your family, you get an opportunity to eat breakfast with the one-year-old, whatever that might be for you, you have the opportunity to do that because you paint that picture yourself.

Elizabeth Shaw 13:07

Exactly, exactly. And it's a lot of hustle. It's a lot of late nights, a lot of grind. I'm sure many of it's you're making the choices of what you're saying yes to, you know.

Gresham Harkless 13:17

Exactly, exactly and you have the power within you to do that. So thank you for that great reminder. Liz, I appreciate you and appreciate all the awesome things you're doing. I appreciate your time even more. What I wanted to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional you can let our readers and listeners know.

And then of course, how best they can get a whole view and find out about all the awesome things you're working on.

Elizabeth Shaw 13:36

I think one of the biggest pieces of advice I would say to your listeners is to have a board, whether it's an inspiration board, a vision board, or just something where you're looking at, even if it's on your phone and it's an album where you're collecting quotes. I think quotes is such a big important part of my day to day, just giving me fire, reminding me that you're doing a great job, things like that.

So find that vision that helps remind you day in and day out, especially when it gets hard that you're doing a great job and that you're here for a reason. So don't forget that.

Gresham Harkless 14:07

Absolutely. I think sometimes we would definitely forget that. Like you said, with the ups and the downs and so many things and the struggles sometimes that we have that you need to have that positive reinforcement. And a lot of times it's what we're putting into, not just our bodies obviously, but also our minds as well too.

Elizabeth Shaw 14:22

Yeah, absolutely.

Gresham Harkless 14:24

Nice. And people that want to follow up with you, what would be the best way for them to do that?

Elizabeth Shaw 14:28

Yeah, you can follow me on Instagram or social media. I'm shawsimpleswaps. I'm on my blog, my website, I'd love to get in touch. Feel free to reach out.

Gresham Harkless 14:42

Awesome. Awesome, awesome. We'll make sure to have those links and that information in the show notes as well. But Liz, thank you so much again for your time and I hope you have a phenomenal rest of the day.

Elizabeth Shaw 14:50

Thank you. You as well.

Outro 14:52

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO podcast, powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community.

Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, subscribe and leave us a five-star rating.

Grab CEO gear at This has been the I AM CEO podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.


Dave Bonachita - CBNation Writer

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(, podcasts, ( and videos ( CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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