Before I release an abundance of nutrition-related blog content, I wanted to come on here and introduce myself! I want to share with you all my journey to becoming a registered dietitian; more specifically, what sparked my interest and how that has transformed into what I deem my life-calling and true passion.
I remember being captivated by nutrition around the age of 16, midway through high school. It was around that age when I began curiously cooking for myself and learning about nutrition contents of food. At that point, I had also picked up exercising as a hobby to “stay in shape” since I was no longer playing sports or dancing, as I had done growing up. From that point on, and all during college, food and exercise were constantly on my mind.
When I chose the path of nutrition and dietetics, I wanted to learn about all the exciting things, like medical nutrition therapy and food’s impact on physical performance, and I did! However, I also secretly wanted the answer to having a thin and “healthy” body. Being a dietetics major (and a girl), I felt it was my obligation to eat perfectly, look thin and stay fit. My mind was in a constant state of anxiety to the point that I was not present in my social life; I was stuck worrying if I “looked like” I ate too much that day or had worked out enough. When I think back to college, those are the memories that consume my mind because I was never taught that obsessing over those things is actually bad for my health.
Since college, I have gained a lot more evidence-based knowledge regarding nutrition and health, which has led to a much-improved relationship with food and my body. Some of the most important concepts I’ve learned include the following: we are made to eat intuitively, our health is impacted by so much more than food and movement, bodies are just as diverse as height and skin color, health doesn’t have a certain look (although we are conditioned to think otherwise), and health can be achieved at every body size.
Gaining this knowledge (and so much more) has taught me how to eat and move more intuitively, instead of making decisions based on calories in food or a number on the scale. I have learned how to trust myself and respect my body for all that it does to keep me alive. I eat what is satisfying to me and move more joyfully.
I share this journey with you because I want to help you do that, too! I am passionate about my position here at USF because I feel a deep connection to the student population. The vast majority of us have grown up in a society always pressuring us to eat perfectly and obtain the “ideal” body. However, our minds do not have to be consumed by those things to be healthy. So, I am here to help break free from the way society has conditioned us to think and become educated on how to nourish your body while also enjoying all the delicious food on campus, without guilt or punishment.
Whether you are trying to manage college life with food allergies or adhere to medical nutrition therapy, I am here for you! If you are looking for general nutrition information or need guidance creating balance in your diet, I am here for you, too!
I am available to any USF Dining meal plan holder, free of charge. Please do not hesitate to reach out!