The Sacred Nest was founded in 2017 by principal practitioner, Cynthia Bartolo, to provide integrative healthcare to the community. She uses a combination of professional and lived-experience as a carer and former Food Scientist to share her knowledge with families on the many ways they can nourish their body and brain for greater wellbeing.

Initially inspired by her daughter who was experiencing digestive issues and learning difficulties, she uses her knowledge of the food industry and latest research on the gut-brain connection and the vagus nerve to assist clients to make positive changes for themselves and their families.

With over 15 years working as a Quality Assurance Specialist, 2 years as a gut health research assistant and postgraduate training in nutrition and neuroscience, Cynthia offers a unique perspective to her Nutritional Counselling. Focusing on gut health, including the gut microbiome and its influence on mood, learning and behaviour, Cynthia supports clients with empathy through her lived-experience as a carer and food lover herself.

Other Modalities

Over the last 11 years, Cynthia has undertaken training in other modalities that have helped her to build resilience in her demanding role as a carer. As an accredited teacher of Stillness Meditation Therapy, she guides participants in her Carer Wellbeing Circles to develop meditation skills for self-care. With an understanding approach and knowledge of neurodiversity, she supports carers and clients who find it especially difficult to rest the mind.

Therapeutic Touch is compassion-focused relaxation process that has also helped Cynthia immensely and she continues to offer this to her children and to clients to help balance their energy and nervous system. She offers all of her Carer Wellbeing Circle participants the opportunity to experience a session for themselves. Cynthia is working to get this evidence-based modality, as well as meditation practices, better recognised by the NDIS and Carer advocacy organisations.

She is a qualified provider of the Safe and Sound Protocol which is an acoustic vagus nerve stimulation program that led to significant improvements for her daughters mental health and relationships. It incorporates 5 hours of listening to scientifically filtered music that trains the middle ear muscles to better perceive sounds of safety in the environment, thereby calming the nervous system.

NDIS Experience

Cynthia has valuable experience navigating the National Disability Insurance Scheme(NDIS), as both a carer and also as an NDIS provider. Cynthia meets the requirements set by the NDIS Quality & Safeguards Commission for and is listed on the NDIS Worker Screening Database. Most of the services offered by The Sacred Nest can be fully claimed by self-managed and plan-managed participants.


  • Associate Nutritionist with Nutrition Society of Australia(NSA)
  • Full member of Nutrition Australia
  • Certified GAPS Practitioner(cGGP) with Gut and Psychology Syndrome(GAPS) Australia
  • Certified SSP and ILS Focus Provider – Integrated Listening Systems(ILS-Unyte)
  • Full member of The Meditation Association of Australia
  • Accredited SMT Teacher – Stillness Meditation Therapy Australia
  • Qualified TT Practitioner – Therapeutic Touch Association of Australasia(TTAA)
  • NDIS Provider – NDIS Quality & Safeguards Commission
  • Worker Screening Check – NDIS Worker Screening Database(NWSD)
  • Standard Mental Health First Aider – Mental Health First Aid Australia(MHFA)

We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people who are the Traditional Custodians of the Land on which The Sacred Nest now stands, and pay respect to the Elders both past and present of the Kulin Nation.