About Jennifer (that's me!)
As always, feel free to ask a question
I’ve been where you are. I was obsessed with food – counting calories, scrutinizing how much I ate, constantly thinking about when I would be able to eat next and then beating myself up for my choices.
Growing up, I got some really mixed messages about food. There were these Rich’s Eclairs, in the freezer section: chewy pastry filled with Bavarian custard and coated with buttery chocolate ganache. I adored them. One day I told my mom that when I grew up, I was going to eat one every day. She looked at me and said, “Go ahed, but you’re going to get very fat.” Then at other times, when she came home from the store with cookies or chips, I’d ask if I could have some, and she’d say, “You can eat them until they’re gone, but then they’ll be gone”. What I internalized from all that was a very confusing set of food rules that manifested in a range of dysfunctional behaviors from restricting or hoarding food and then out of control eating. This was my relationship with food well into my adult years.
It was not a fun way to live. My relationship with food was governed by restriction, self-denial, and shame.
I denied myself those amazing eclairs, and promised myself I wouldn’t eat pizza or ice cream. I didn’t allow myself white rice or white flour. I mandated that I eat at least two cups of vegetables a day. There was to be no food after 8pm. Any “slip” or deviation from any of those rules and I’d beat myself up about it – I’d judge myself as being a failure who had no self-control or will power. The self-flagellation was brutal. Sooner or later I’d have a food ‘temper tantrum’ and eat whole pizzas and half-dozens of eclairs, which made me sick to my stomach and feeling even worse about myself.
I heard about Intuitive Eating, and decided I wanted a different relationship with food. Instead of forcing self-control, I began to practice self-compassion and allow myself the foods I wanted without judgement.
By shifting my focus away from restriction and guilt to making intentional food choices based on what I want and need, I have been able to get away from beating myself up and move toward feeling good about myself. Today I decide what, when, where, and how I’m going to eat, including eclairs, kale, pizza, blueberries – the whole spectrum of foods. I enjoy my food, and I enjoy my life. Now that I’m a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor, as well as a Licensed Nutritionist, I’d love to teach you what I’ve learned so you can be healthy and happy, too.
More about me:
In terms of education, I’ve got a Masters in Nutrition from the Maryland University of Integrative Health, am Board Certified as a Nutrition Specialist, licensed as a Dietician Nutritionist, and am a Certified Health Coach. I’m also a Certified Intuitive Eating Counselor. Lots of words to say I’m book smart. I’m also a member of the American Nutrition Association. Hooray!
In terms of experience, there are testimonials all over this website from clients describing how I’ve helped them. I’ve got a great track record. But please know that for every 100% I bring to my clients, they bring 110% in commitment and effort. They are amazing and accomplish so much!
I’m here to help you heal your relationship with food so you can feel confident in your choices. My vision is that you can have a sustainable, balanced relationship with food. It’s all about making choices that take the best care of you: mind, body and soul. I believe that with the right intention, you can enjoy your food – all food – rather than being ruled by it. Bonus, I’ve got a great sense of humor, so working with me is fun.
PS: My mom is awesome and a dear friend. Those messages she gave me were the best she had to offer, based on the messages she got from her mom and society at large. It’s my hope that I can help many people – people like you - turn the tide of food guilt/shame so we can all have a happy life and enjoy what we eat.
¨I’m better able to associate how I feel (physically and emotionally) with what my diet has been and make the necessary adjustments. In a matter of a day or so, I am able to get back on track instead of continuing for weeks or even months eating poorly and feeling bad. I have a better sense of control not just over my diet, but my life in general.¨