How health journey led to book on solving sleep issues

Most people know Amanda Chocko from her work at Lakeshore Advantage and its SURGE business incubator and startup hub.

However, she wears another hat – that of a nutritional therapy practitioner. She earned her certification in 2017 from the Nutritional Therapy Association.

“I had started that journey because of some of my own health issues that I had been dealing with 10 years before that,” says Chocko. “I had all these issues going on, and I really wanted to get to the root cause. So I got more into a holistic approach, working alongside my doctor.”

After gaining her certification, she began teaching group programs and working with clients one-on-one.

Realizing importance of sleep

“Even though my clients didn't come to me with sleep issues, it was kind of prevalent throughout all of them,” says Chocko, who says she experienced her own sleep issues in 2020, brought on by the stress of the pandemic.

“My insomnia really got completely out of control. I was just basically walking around like a zombie,” Chocko says. “I decided I really needed to find out what was going on. So I really dug into the research on sleep. I wanted to put together some type of a program where I can help my clients but also fix my own sleep issues.”

Out of her experience, Chocko created a group program with a step-by-step approach to finding and fixing the root cause of insomnia.

“I realized that I actually had a book. It took me two years for the whole process to write a book while working a job,” Chocko says.

Published in January, the book, “Relax Sleep Thrive: Your 5-Week Journey to Peaceful, Restorative Sleep," has a five-star rating on Amazon.

One of those reviews came from Dr. Laurie Birkholz, who has begun to offer copies of the book in her Holland practice, LBMD & Associates.

"Sleep problems are definitely one of the most common concerns I hear from my patients and as a physician focused on prevention and wellness, it's imperative I have tools to support them! This book has quickly become one of those tools," she wrote. It is well written and the first book I have found laid out in a way to truly support a person on their entire journey to better sleep! It is a 'doable' read for even the busiest of people."

No single solution for all

In the book, Chocko lays out a five-week timeline which helps people identify what is disrupting their sleep and how to fix it. There’s no one solution for everyone, she says.

“It could be so many different things, and what is my issue may not be your issue or somebody else's. That's why I've structured my book where first we're really going through the foundations of sleep.”

As a result of her research, Chocko has pivoted her nutritional practice to focus on sleep coaching. 

“I could still help with nutrition and gut health and all of those things because a lot of times those things are contributing to sleep issues or vice versa,” says Chocko. “I still get to use all of my experience and training. But I think sleep is really the foundation of good health.”

Building self-awareness

In the book, she shows people how to track behaviors that could be causing poor sleep so they can connect the dots. 

“By the end of the book, hopefully you have some self-awareness and you're getting your sleep on track,” says Chocko. “You're seeing where you're dealing well, where you still need some work and you're continuing to improve on your sleep. Then I have links to additional tools and resources that I also do one on one, sleep coaching and group coaching as well.”

Readers are invited to take a sleep assessment again at the end of the book to see where they have improved and where they still might need some work. 

The book is on Amazon and in the Holland Barnes and Noble Bookstore under the local authors section or the sleep section. It can also be purchased on her website,

Chocko says her day job working with entrepreneurs has helped with the launch of the book and her business’ new focus.

“I've been working with entrepreneurs for the last over 15 years. I help them, but I also learn from them a lot,” she says. “So many individuals at Lakeshore Advantage and SURGE have helped me on this journey.”
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Read more articles by Shandra Martinez.