Why did you become a Registered Dietitian?
My favourite childhood memories are around food. My mother constantly told me about hungry children somewhere in East Africa, and I thought I would work for the World Health Organisation and feed hungry children. When I graduated, I had been exposed to different aspects of dietetics and nutrition and the initial plan was not an option. I still dream of the coastline of Kenya.
What do you enjoy most about the work you do? What are the most satisfying moments?
I enjoy helping clients design their wellness paths. They do have some knowledge and as I guide them, they gain confidence to assess what is right for them.
Satisfying moments: when clients meet their health goals and experience how a healthier body feels, how food and self-love can enhance their life and energy levels.
What has been your career highlight?
Since I studied Functional Medicine, I have widened my understanding of the relationship between diet, lifestyle, genetics and disease processes and this has influenced my practice.
What are the most challenging aspects of your career?
Dealing with clients who do not want to take responsibility for their health, and wanting to blame someone and rely on medication.
How do you cope after a day of nutrition disaster and bad eating choices?
I really do not have those days. It helps that I do not have a sweet tooth, and because of my allergies to nuts, gluten and soya – nothing in the stores will be permissible to sort out any need for emotional and comfort eating.
I make time to prepare and enjoy my meals. I eat whole foods and do enjoy them tremendously. Yoga is my moving meditation and it helps to clear my mind.
What are the three things that you think people should stop saying when they meet a dietitian?
“Please give me a diet “
“Do I look fat?”
“I am on this diet. Is it healthy?”
What should clients look out for when deciding which dietitian to work with?
Someone who takes into consideration your culture, lifestyle, socio-economic status, family and social life. You have to be able to relate to the dietitian, to form a trusting relationship.
What is your favourite dish and your favourite treat food?
My daily treat : honest hot chocolate (raw, organic and milk and sugar free), coconut cream and milk.
My favourite dish is whole grain sorghum risotto with mushrooms and a mature (12 or 18 months) cheese.
To find a Registered Dietitian in your area visit http://www.adsa.org.za/Public/FindARegisteredDietitian.aspx