FOOD TO FIT
for something nutrishus
Why did you become a RD?
After high school, I had four years to work, travel, and explore my interests. Throughout that time I had a variety of jobs, but my position as a Special Care Aid for older adults certainly played a role in developing a joy and appreciation for supporting the wellness of others. Along with what I learned abroad about food and culture, I put my focus towards a career that combined food, wellness, people, and optimizing growth and aging.
What area of dietetics do you work in?
I am a Consulting Dietitian running a private practice in Saskatoon called Food To Fit. Primarily I support individuals and families with optimizing nutritional intake through grocery shopping, meal planning, and mindful eating. I focus on areas of sport and fitness, weight loss using a natural body size approach, irritable bowel syndrome, vegetarian eating, and some infant nutrition. I also work in the corporate environment and with private care homes.
What has been your career path?
I started out in 2009 with the Saskatoon Health Region (SHR) as Clinical Dietitian at St. Paul’s Hospital. In 2010 I accepted a temporary position as Community Nutritionist with the Food for Thought and Healthy Mother Healthy Baby programs. In 2011, I transferred to Population Public Health supporting nurses and taking infant/child referrals through the immunization clinics. It was during this time that I started consulting on the side and six months later I was a proud (and overwhelmed!) business owner. Entrepreneurship was new to me, I had a steep learning curve ahead, and I was happy to have consistency with SHR. In 2012, I accepted a permanent position at Sherbrooke Community Centre supporting adults of all ages in a fabulous long-term care environment. I now focus my time in private practice building the vision I have for Food To Fit.
What are your ‘typical’ daily/weekly tasks?
Aside from keeping up with email and social media? Haha. Business promotion, proposals, planning, and administration are almost daily tasks, but I find these details difficult to prioritize. I prefer to be the doer – hands on and front line so to speak. I like to be in the community, supporting individuals and families, presenting to groups, facilitating workshops, and providing services to local businesses. I am regularly involved in the media, writing articles or interviewing with TV, radio, or print and I recently joined Dietitians of Canada (DC) as media spokesperson for Saskatchewan. I support aspiring consulting dietitians with the DC Consulting Dietitians Network. Experimenting in the kitchen is definitely part of the week-to-week tasks and my favourite recipes are photographed and blogged. I attempt to be a good leader and role model to our small team at Food To Fit - Amy and Dayna add a unique set of skills, knowledge, and fun to the team and I appreciate them dearly.
What advanced education or special training do you have?
Having exposure to various roles early in my career, I gained a variety of skills specific to those areas of dietetics. So, I suppose I have front line experience. I have learned how to connect with individuals and the importance of hearing their stories; I have gained confidence and insight to recognize my strengths and limitations; I take opportunities to learn and develop where possible. The day I feel I know everything about nutrition and dietetics is the day I fail as a dietitian. I will be forever learning, growing, and expanding on my education.
Having said that, in 2010 I completed the Maternal and Infant Nutrition Course through the University of Minnesota, I participated in the Eden Alternative Associate Training through Sherbrooke, and I have completed a number of webinars through DCs Learning on Demand program.
This year I am most excited about a few training opportunities: the first was Stephanie Clairmont’s Low FODMAP and IBS Strategy Training in January. The second is the DC Intensive Sport Nutrition Course in Calgary coming this November. I have also developed a keen interest in mindful eating and the ‘Health at Every Size’ philosophy, participating in webinars and online forums.
In an ideal world, what does the industry look like 5 years from now?
Tough one to narrow down, but for sure I would like to see more Canadians with health insurance coverage for dietitian services.
What are you passionate about in dietetics?
At this point in my career, I am most passionate about filing the gaps in healthcare. Supporting clients who may not fall into specific enough categories to be seen by a health region dietitian, but who want to address concerns or goals. The way I see it, if dietitians are not readily available to everyone, what is the alternative?
More about Brooke:
Facebook: Food To Fit
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