Growing up, I loved all sports. I played soccer, AFL, touch footy, basketball, hockey, and whatever other sports I could try my hand at! As with most kids, I didn’t care a whole lot about food in my early schooling years, knowing that I was active enough to basically eat whatever I wanted.
However, I hit puberty quite early compared to my friends and started to notice my curves and weight gain. This made me very self-conscious and led me to start researching weight loss diets. It didn’t take long before I found what seemed like the most sensible option at the time - a low-fat, low-Calorie diet, coupled with increased exercise.
Calories in vs. Calories out – simple! So long as I ate less Calories than what I burned off each day, I would lose weight.
However, before I knew it, this simple regimen had become an obsession! I withdrew from the activities and social events that I previously loved participating in, and Calories were all-of-a-sudden my biggest priority. I had lost almost 15kg before I realised that I had been sucked deep into the toxic dieting cycle, and I needed to get myself out of it - fast.
I was convinced to seek psychological help and was able to restore a healthy weight with lots of support from loved ones. This personal experience sparked my fascination with the significant impact of nutrition on both physical and mental health, so I made the decision to study Nutrition and Dietetics at University. I wanted to save others from getting sucked into the toxic world of dieting and weight loss, and instead, use nutrition to positively impact their health and wellbeing.
Throughout my University studies, I continued to discover a much healthier way to view food. In particular, by looking at how different foods could fuel my body for optimal health, cognition and physical performance. I absolutely love running, and even though my passion for running started in the midst of my weight loss crusade, I knew that I would enjoy it even more and be able to continue competing competitively if I focused on strategies to better fuel both my body and mind.
I continued to experiment with different dietary strategies to see what would work best for me. Nutrition is an investigation and I understood at this point that I needed to find my own personalised diet. With that said, I knew that low-fat dieting and Calorie restriction was not a strategy that I would ever implement again! The more I learned about the role of individual nutrients in the body, the more I enriched my diet with nutrient-dense foods. I have now completely overhauled my relationship with food, and my sports performance is the best it has ever been. I still play soccer and am a keen long-distance runner, competing in several half and full marathons.
In addition to being a Dietitian, I am also a Personal Trainer. I run group outdoor fitness classes and guide clients one-on-one through weights, boxing and cardio sessions at the gym. I strongly believe that the combination of eating well and keeping your body moving is the key to a long and healthy life.
I feel greatly empowered by nutrition and fascinated by how it can impact and improve both my own health, and the health and wellbeing of others. As a practicing dietitian, I’m passionate about helping others to see through the many nutritional myths that are out there, so they, too, can establish a healthy relationship with food and can provide their bodies with the food and nutrients they need to improve their health.