This article was originally written and published as part of my work supporting the employees of the Cambridge Health Alliance
Every weekend my husband and I lace up our shoes, pack the kids in a double stroller and head out the door for a long run. The distance varies depending on the goals we’re working towards. Currently our eyes are on the virtual Boston marathon (for CHA) so the distance is getting up there... along with the mental effort.
This weekend my husband mapped a 15 miler in an area of Massachusetts we’ve never been. I looked at the map and signed off on the route with a pretty good general understanding of where we were going. I have never been more wrong. And the “not knowing” was agonizing.
Nothing like a little uncertainty to launch us on a roller coaster of emotions. One moment we're feeling great and the next, we glimpse a headline, receive an email, or get a call that casts a barrage of self-doubt and throws us down in despair and we doubt everything we knew (and feel).
This roller coaster is real (and normal) when you are charting the unknown. It's particularly challenging if you are a person who is used to being in control and always having the answer. It can lead to some pretty intense lows. So what can you do?
Why is nutrition so hard? Why do 10 people hear a nutrition message, 1 can "easily" make the changes, 7-8 struggle, and 1-2 develop an eating disorder? Because what we eat is not a cognitive decision. It has much more to do with our psycho/social circumstance and where we are rooted as people.
If you feel like you don’t eat enough vegetables each day, you’re not alone. According to the most recent data from the CDC, only 1 in 10 Americans actually eat the recommended 2-3 cups of vegetables per day. There are many reasons it’s a challenge - cost, access, food waste, increased preparation time, limited knowledge / skills, and taste preferences are all known and real challenges.
But what’s the big deal? Can you replace the value of vegetables with other foods or a supplement? The answer boils down to food chemistry and health research.
It’s easy to post tips and suggestions for people to try on the surface - “eat this” or “buy that.” But how do you begin to help people address their deeper thoughts and beliefs?
One strategy is visualization. People are perhaps most familiar with positive visualization. Books and social movements like “The Secret” inspire the notion that we are in control of what happens to us. Does that mean we are responsible if / when things go awry?
The practice of nutrition feels divided into many (many) “camps” these days. Many feel their way is the “right” way leaving those not in the nutrition field trying to make sense of where they belong.
We all know someone who lost weight and kept it off. However, how many people do you know who have lost weight and gained it all back (+ more)? How many people do you know who are “fighting” their weight? Chances are when you look at the numbers, for every 1 person you know who kept it off, you know another 20 "battling" their body. Why do so many struggle and what's the solution? Read on for more.
The start of the holiday season is here! This season is a joyful time in many ways but catching up with family and friends has its challenges - especially if you're shifting your relationship with food and your body. Read on below for a few thoughts...
Countless women have set foot in my office complaining of unexplained weight gain, exhaustion, difficulty sleeping, and unclear food sensitivities. They are convinced something is wrong with them and they’re only in my office because either the doctor told them to come or they believe it must be cause they’re “eating wrong.” Labs for thyroid function, allergies, anemia, deficiencies, and diabetes are normal. There is nothing “clinically” wrong with them. What is going on?!
Meal plans are the top request in a dietitian's office - "just tell me what I can eat." It’s no secret that diet programs impose rules on your life - what you can eat, what you can’t eat, where you can eat, and when. While rules seem great, they have pretty serious drawbacks. Why?
Time to launch into another year of high school sports. If you're a coach (or a parent) you might be trying to figure out ways to get your athletes to reach their full potential. Check out the below post to understand some of the challenges (and solutions) in keeping teenage athletes fueled.
It's easier than ever to find an article about "healthy eating." A quick search on Google provided over 860,000,000 results...and another 35,800,000 videos (yikes).
I recognize and appreciate that people are passionate about nutrition. I also recognize that once we find something that "works" for us, we want to shout it from the roof tops! I truly believe that many professionals should talk about food to with their clients - it's a cornerstone to health. However, it's important to recognize whether the "truth" you preach to your clients is helpful or harmful.
Picky eating is one of the top reasons families set foot in my office. I wish the solution was quick and simple, but the reality is that it's not our job as parents to "get our children to eat." Instead, it's about helping kids be confident around food and learn how to interact with it.
DISCLAIMER: The information presented here is meant to be for general education. If you want individual guidance to reach your unique health goals, please contact me or a local dietitian directly
Dietitian, personal trainer, mother, wife, runner, and triathlete staying healthy one bit and bite at a time