“From a place of positivity, we’ll develop a sustainable and pleasurable eating pattern that helps you feel nourished, healthy, and still able to live a life you love.”
What was your path to becoming a nutritionist? What inspired you to choose this profession?
My genuine curiosity about the connection between food and disease management led me to work in this field. Along the way, I discovered a passion and strength for helping others improve how they connect with food and their bodies. Through my professional experiences, I’ve learned that a large barrier to addressing health concerns is a long-standing, complicated relationship with food—and I’ve gained a lot of clarity about how I want to shape my practice. I hold the many roles of food with equal importance—it’s a part of health management and nourishment, to be sure, but also of cultural identity, social connection, and expression of autonomy and choice. As a nutritionist, I am honored to partner with clients in finding a relationship with food that is balanced, health-promoting, and enjoyable.
What would you want someone to know about working with you?
I can help you discover the pleasure of eating for your health and well-being. My approach is grounded in intuitive eating (IE) principles, which help to strengthen responsiveness to emotions that may drive different eating behaviors. I integrate IE with evidence-based nutrition science and tie in the importance of mindfulness and self-care for a whole-person approach to health. This framework can be applied to conditions like diabetes or GI disorders, as well as behaviors like chronic dieting and binge eating. Together, we will work past any stigma you may feel surrounding food choices, body shape, or medical diagnoses. From a place of positivity, we’ll develop a sustainable and pleasurable eating pattern that helps you feel nourished, healthy, and still able to live a life you love.
What do you think is the biggest barrier today for people seeking care?
There is a lot of conflicting nutrition information in the media—and we’re constantly being bombarded with new fad diets, unfounded food fears, and extreme “all-or-nothing” messages about health. This often makes people feel overwhelmed and interferes with seeking proper nutrition care. Additionally, while I’m excited that there are so many new, empowering perspectives about nutrition and weight, weight bias still remains in the medical community and society at large. This has created a harmful diet culture of restriction and can fuel feelings of shame that keep people from finding compassionate care for their health conditions or disordered eating behaviors. In my practice, I help my clients increase their confidence in their bodies and food choices—ultimately quieting the noise from external sources.
How does collaboration with other providers play into your work?
With the client’s permission, I enjoy actively collaborating with medical professionals and mental health practitioners. The pursuit of physical health is not healthy at all if the other aspects of health, such as quality of relationships or mental health, are compromised. A team approach offers comprehensive care and allows the whole context of one’s life to be considered.
What does it mean to be a Health at Every Size practitioner?
Health at Every Size (HAES) offers a holistic perspective on health and rejects the notion that health can only be achieved at a certain weight. As a HAES-aligned practitioner, I accept and respect the diversity of body shapes and sizes, and I enlist a weight-neutral approach to nutrition counseling. This doesn’t mean I’m unwilling to discuss weight concerns with my clients (what’s important to them is important to me!), but I encourage looking outside the “weight box” to measure health and feelings of wellness. My mission is to help clients untangle feelings of self-worth from body size. Instead, we work together to develop a meaningful and energizing relationship with food and health.
“As a HAES-aligned practitioner, I accept and respect the diversity of body shapes and sizes, and I enlist a weight-neutral approach to nutrition counseling.”
Interested in speaking with Eling?