When You Study Nutrition

Studying nutrition has been one of the best decisions I’ve made. I am a firm believer in “do you what you love and you never have to work a day in your life.” While the workload is demanding and intense, I still love everything about nutrition and health. Sure, I complain from time to time, but at the end of the day I couldn’t imagine majoring in another field.

Being in this major also causes you to think about food. a lot.

As my four years is coming to a close, I have realized that even in a field of health nuts, we all have different views on nutrition and health. And you know what? I love it!

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I truly enjoy hearing what others think and believe. Call me crazy, but diversity is the spice of life. If everyone was the same, well then that would be boring. Trust me, my roommate/bestie and I fell into this trap early sophomore year and it caused issues. Now we freely embrace (hopefully) each others quirks. Everyone is going to have different views on food. Its inevitable in this day and age. Food used to be a “safe” dinner topic and now…well not so much.

As I chatted with Shannon, she brought up food values/beliefs. This got me thinking about what are mine? Do I have any at all? Much to my surprise, I do! Three words pretty much came to mind.

Wholesome. Healthy. Happy.

f14eab7bd7e1d1aebba2c2e289b6d939In a nutshell, I believe in the benefits of eating whole, healthy foods. Fresh fruits, vegetables, legumes, lean meats, whole grains and low fat dairy make up a bulk of my diet. Not because I am an in the health field, but because I enjoy these foods as well. I do think they are extremely beneficial for our health, as I have learned during my undergrad years. You can’t deny science people. At the same time, I like foods that are “food for the soul.” Constant denial of certain foods/food groups only sets you up for failure. I have seen with many of my clients when they avoid foods they like, which might not be considered the healthiest, and end up going overboard. Do I enjoy foods that are not the healthiest choices? Well yeah – I’m not going to deny freshly baked cookies, red velvet treats or rich, cheesy dishes for the sake of health. For me, I wouldn’t be happy.

717ca0a6444c5646d08d99a6533c987fMany media RDs preach moderation, and that is something I truly believe in. Everything fits in a healthy lifestyle and I don’t think any one food or nutrient should be avoided. (Unless you are allergic – then avoid that stuff like plague). Carbs are not the enemy. Fat alone does not make us fat. Sugar in excess is harmful to health, but a few squares of chocolate or a cookie after dinner isn’t going to kill you.

Is my food value similar to yours? Maybe, maybe not. And that’s okay.

  • You want to eat all organic? Cool – I applaud you (and slightly jealous because organic meats are my favorite but pricy)
  • Vegetarian for ethical reasons? You go girlfriend!
  • Vegan/raw? Sure – just make sure you get some B12 ;)

For more information check out the Academy’s stance on moderation.

Eat what you love. Love what you eat. 6ed66030105192ad3412751ff8c57210

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14 Comments

  1. I love love LOVE this post!! I want to become a Dietician and I am all about moderation… I’ve tried cutting sugar out of my diet in order to be the healthiest version of myself… but honestly… I eat/ feel so much healthier when I enjoy little treats!! So I loved this post!! And the cute little quotes you have too!! :) Sweets are good for the soul! LOVE it! Thanks!

  2. I am going back to school this spring to finish three prereq classes (all the other prereqs I took when I was going towards dental hygiene tranfer) and then applying to a holistic nutrition program at a natural medicine college! I AM SO EXCITED! I haven’t talked about this yet on my blog, but I am so jazzed about it. This post makes me even more excited, and convinced this is my path! I agree with EVERYTHING you’ve said in this post, and I haven’t even started my program yet.

  3. Love this post! You know I totally agree with you about moderation. I strongly believe in food not only as fuel for our bodies, but also as a source of pleasure and a means for social interaction. And it’s important to allow ourselves to view food in all of those ways to stay balanced!

  4. I love, love, love this post!! I’m going to have to agree with you that moderation is key. How boring would life be without ice cream and cookies?! I think some people can handle more treats than others, but I also think that they have some place in everyone’s diet. Eating entirely “clean” and never indulging just doesn’t sound like the healthiest diet in my opinion!

  5. I agree with you that food and nutrition can be such a varied topic & full of all different opinions & philosophies. I think about food all of the time too & love eating whole foods, & following a Paleo type lifestyle. Some people think it’s restrictive, but I think it’s very healthy & I feel great eating this way. I’ve found I gravitate towards more fresh foods & far less package & processed ones now. This isn’t to say that I don’t enjoy the occasional “treat”, but I truly think we gotta do what works for us & makes us healthy & happy. :)

  6. This was one of the most sensible posts I’ve read in a long time. (Maybe it’s just because we have the same philosophy and “great minds think alike.” :) People get so hung up on “good and bad” foods when anything is fine in moderation. Everything works together for good – even if it’s for our soul as a cookie would be.

    I can’t wait to discover what you write next! Blessings,

  7. I love this. I think as a future RD you have the right idea that one persons diet may be influenced by beliefs, dietary restriction, or preferences, and that is fine as long as their food serves their body. It is really easy to fall in the restrictive diet trap because of outside influences, but in reality, you have got to learn what YOUR body thrives on.

Thoughts?

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