Rockstar non-diet dietitians you need to know
As a body image therapist, I'm very conscious of how linked body image and our eating patterns are. Our thoughts and feelings about our body can drive us to dieting, and the evidence is clear that dieting can contribute to anxiety, depression, increased appearance focus, and body image distress (which is really upsetting considering that people make weight loss attempts in order to feel better!).
Non-diet dietitians are complete rockstars in my opinion. They help people to heal their relationship with food. Rather than give clients eating plans, telling them what and how much to eat, they instead teach clients how to tune in better to appetite, allow all foods without fear, and learn to feel calm and relaxed about food. Non-diet dietitians are about nourishing ourselves and enjoying food in a peaceful way.
Here I'll share just some of the Australian non-diet dietitians who are changing the landscape of what it means to 'eat healthy'. I encourage you to explore their work for wonderful things to read, listen to, and absorb, as a more peaceful relationship with food goes hand in hand with a more peaceful relationship with your body...
Rockstar non-diet dietitians you should check out:
Zoe Nicholson & Kerrie Hill are the team at Love What You Eat. Zoe is my business partner and co-founder at The Moderation Movement, so we have had the pleasure of presenting workshops together around Australia. Zoe has been interviewed on radio and television about the non-diet approach and you can read her many posts either on Facebook at The Moderation Movement or on her blog.
One of my favourite posts from Love What You Eat: If you regain weight after losing it, it's not your fault
Nina Mills has created a website and business with the most beautiful calm and supportive feel - just like Nina herself! I was fortunate to have Nina by my side when we both undertook the Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Level 1 training and the many counselling role plays it entailed. I can vouch for what an empathic listener Nina is! She is also a talented food photographer. You can read her many posts and see some of those photos on Facebook or on her blog.
One of my favourite posts from Feel Good Eating: Why you won't find nutrition information on my recipes
If non-diet dietitians are rockstars then Fiona Sutherland must be their lead singer. Fiona is the dynamo behind The Mindful Dietitian and one half of Body Positive Australia. Fiona has been an Accredited Practicing Dietitian for 20 years, and is a specialist in eating disorders, a lecturer in dietetics at Deakin Uni, an she also manages Nutrition Services at the Australia Ballet School! Check out The Mindful Dietitian's blog posts - especially if you're a dietitian or you aspire to be one! And if you love podcasts and want to know more from non-diet dietitians making a mark then check out The Mindful Dietitian's podcast.
One of my favourite resources from The Mindful Dietitian: Fact sheets for Dietitians
Fiona Willer, is known as the research guru in the non-diet dietetics and Health at Every Size space in Australia. When we all have a question about the supporting evidence, she is quick to provide references and her amazing wisdom. Fiona is a PhD candidate, a university lecturer, presenter, and reviews submissions for peer reviewed academic journals. If you're interested in the research surrounding weight inclusive practices and non-diet dietetics then definitely subscribe to the free Health not Diets Digest.
If you are a health professional wanting more training in this space then I highly recommend the Health not Diets workshops.
Courtney was training to be a Dietitian when she saw the wellness industry for what it was – a churning machine of orthorexia and disordered eating. No Green Smoothies’ original purpose was to challenge these ideals and show people that there is a better way. Courtney now a Dietitian and Nutritionist, specialises in chronic dieting recovery and eating disorder treatment. You can check out Courtney's blog here.
One of my favourite blog posts from No Green Smoothies: Why controlling your weight will always backfire
I first met Meg McClintock, the principal Dietitian at Choose Nutrition, when she saved Zoe and I! We had a full day workshop on the Gold Coast for The Moderation Movement, and Zoe fell terribly ill a couple of days prior. We put the call out to the network of fabulous non-diet Dietitians and Meg rescheduled her plans to jump in and assist. She did a stellar job of a full day of presenting and organising, and we had a ball together. Meg leads a team of four at Choose Nutrition and you can check out their website or Facebook.
A non-diet dynamo with a wicked sense of humour, Susan Williams, is the principal Dietitian at Zest. Susan has chosen to specialise in disordered eating, eating disorders, and body image, and describes herself as having "Very little interest in what people actually eat". For Susan (and other non-diet dietitians) it's about a client's relationship with food that is key. You can check out Zest Nutrition on Facebook here.
One of my favourite blog posts from Zest Nutrition Consulting: Don't worry about what you eat
Louise Grech established Fresh Approach to Wellness to bring specialised dietetic services to Melbourne’s western suburbs with a focus on eating habits and behaviours, body and weight concerns, and healing from eating disorders. Lou is also part of the team at Mind Body Well one of Melbourne’s leading Eating Disorders treatment practices. Also known as The Compassionate Nutritionist you can check out Louise's work on Facebook.
One of my favourite blog posts from Fresh Approach: You don't have to
Fumi is a dietitian and conditioning therapist who specialises in working with dancers to nurture a healthy relationship with food and their body. The risk of disordered eating and eating disorders is particularly high amongst dancers, so Fumi is the ballet dancing rockstar spreading the word that there is a safer and more effective way for dancers to approach food. You can find Dancers Don't Diet on Facebook or on her blog.
One of my favourite posts from Dancers Don't Diet: We can stop eating disorders before they start. And we should.
I hope this post has helped you to realise that not all dietitians are about telling you what you should and shouldn't eat, handing out meal plans, and putting you on the scales! If you are interested in healing your relationship with food, I encourage you to reach out to a Non-diet Dietitian who works with a weight inclusive approach.
By no means is this a list of all the wonderful non-diet dietitians in Australia! I apologise to all those professionals who aren't mentioned here. My intention is to promote the wonderful work being done in the profession.