Hi and welcome to my blog Zen & Spice! I’m a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and foodie. Check out my ABOUT me page and find more details about my personal and professional background.
What is your mission here at Zen & Spice?
There are two parts to my business and blog: zen, and spice. I believe that a balanced life contains a little of both– inner peace, mindfulness, as well as enjoying flavorful, nourishing foods and treating our bodies with respect. All of my recipes are enjoyable, satiable, and nourishing (for the body AND soul).
I believe the path to a nourished, happy life is to develop a healthy relationship with food, our minds and our bodies. By cooking more at home, eating and moving intuitively, we can achieve peace of mind and be happy in the here and now. Follow along for delicious, easy recipes and simple strategies to learn how to become comfortable in the kitchen and embrace mindfulness.
Just because I’m a dietitian doesn’t mean that I never eat “bad” foods. I enjoy chocolate, beer, chips and salsa, ice cream, all that good stuff. The foods that nourish your soul. I am a huge fan of Intuitive Eating. With intuitive eating, cravings are diminished because you allow yourself to eat whatever you want, as long as you pay attention to how full you are, and how certain foods make you feel after eating them.
What do you consider a “healthy” lifestyle?
A healthy, balanced lifestyle is far more than just nutrition and food related. Stress management, exercise, healthy and positive relationships, nourishing food, sleep, hydration, and mindfulness all factor in to a well rounded lifestyle.
- I firmly believe in the concept of Intuitive Eating.
- Respecting that our bodies need fuel with adequate energy.
- Give yourself unconditional permission to eat.
- Listen to your body for signals that tell you that you are full.
- Honor your feelings without using food. Choose mindful self-care activities.
- Stay active, but only with physical activity that makes you feel good and you ENJOY.
- Make sure you’re getting a well-rested night’s sleep.
- Make time for relaxation and social activities. Our lives can be hectic and jam packed. Remember to slow down and breathe.
What do you eat every day?
Just because I’m a dietitian doesn’t mean that I never eat “bad” foods. I eat foods that nourish my body and soul. By paying attention to how certain foods make me feel after eating (or drinking) them, I can choose foods that nourish without making me feel bad afterwards. I enjoy chocolate, beer, chips and salsa, ice cream, all that good stuff. Foods that make a common occurrence: cheese (all kinds), milk, beef, fish, PASTA, pizza, burgers, soups, carrots, green beans, and berries.
What should I eat more of?
Whatever you have a taste for. Listening to your body is one of the best ways to figure out what to eat– trust it, it knows what makes it feel good!
What tools do I need in my kitchen?
You don’t need anything too fancy– my must-haves are a good kitchen knife, cutting boards, and a large non-stick pan. Oh and a food processor and a spiralizer.
How many calories are in this?
I like to focus more on the nutrient density and quality of the food rather than the numbers. Personally, I am not a calorie counter. I find that it makes me stress out about the foods I eat and feelings of guilt occur. By focusing on nutrient density and how foods make us feel, you can be sure you’re choosing the right types and amount of food.
Can I share and repost your recipe on my blog or website?
I own my own content, photography, images, and recipes. Please refrain from using it as your own. I’m all about sharing, however! You can share a recipe or image by contacting, referring or linking directly back to my site.
What exactly do you do everyday?
During the day, I am a School Wellness Consultant for Dairy MAX! My territory is Fort Worth, Texas and anything west Texas. I work in schools, helping to run Fuel Up to Play 60, the nation’s largest in-school nutrition education and physical activity program. I also help schools get equipment and optimize dairy in their school cafeterias. When I get off work, I typically take our schnoodle puppy for a walk, and then start dinner (if we’re not eating leftovers!). After dinner is when all the blogging magic happens!
What’s your favorite physical activity?
Right now I’m attending Texas Fit Chicks boot-camp three times per week. The team environment and encouragement from my trainer keeps me coming each week! So much better than working out on my own. I also attend heated cycle classes 1-2 times a week.
What do you do for fun?
I really love cooking and food photography. I also love hanging out with my friends and family, my puppy, and being outside. I have a very artistic side so I like to paint, craft and do photography.
Visit my About Me page for more.
How did you get started with Zen & Spice?
I started my first blog back in January of 2013– it was called The Apron Blog, and let me tell you, it was a mess! A year later, after I learned a TON about blogging from researching and practicing, I changed my name to Zen & Spice. This name opened up my scope from just recipes, to nutrition, wellness, mindfulness, everything that I love to blog about. The new name has helped my blog grow exponentially over the past year. If you are interested in starting a blog of your own, check out my how to start a blog page and this list of my favorite resources.
What is a Registered Dietitian/Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RD/RDN)?
RD and RDN mean the same thing and can be used interchangeably, RDN is a recent addition to our credentials.
To become a Registered Dietitian/RD (now also known as Registered Dietitian Nutritionist/RDN):
- Minimum education of a bachelors degree with approved course work and education received through an approved and accredited program via Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND).
- Completed a supervised practice component with accredited sites (by the ACEND), practicums vary in length from 6-12 months at a variety of locations/experiences (food service, community, hospital/clinical, outpatient, wellness, etc. This is combined with either undergraduate or graduate studies.
- Passed a national exam administered by Commission on Dietetic Registration.
- Complete continuing education requirements to maintain registration.
- Insurances will cover RD/RDN consultations, as we are the preferred provider on their lists of professional care.
What’s the difference between a Registered Dietitian/RDN and a health coach or nutritionist?
There’s a saying that goes: Is your nutritionist a Registered Dietitian? A Registered Dietitian can refer to themselves as a health coach, wellness coach, or a nutritionist; but a nutritionist and a health coach can not call themselves a registered dietitian.
Registered dietitians (RD’s) are trained in the scientific, pathophysiology, and nutritional therapy aspect of nutrition, but RD/RDN’s and also trained in diverse aspects of nutrition counseling. There are a variety of RD/RDN’s with education and expertise in culinary/food science, community nutrition, coaching, counseling, women’s health, clinical care, sports nutrition, etc. No matter what our professional practice area, we all have in common to support our clients in any way possible including empowering them to reach their highest potential possible by lifestyle and behavior changes. Registered Dietitians have a diverse background in the sciences which is extremely helpful in understanding and applying nutrition components to facilitate the appropriate lifestyle changes.
Health coaches and nutritionist programs/certifications, receive a general/broad-based knowledge on nutrition, with less focus on the sciences and disease processes and applying specific medical nutrition therapy and focus on other therapies of care for the individual.
Can I subscribe to a newsletter to get updates about Zen & Spice or recipe posts?
Sure can! You can directly subscribe to all updates from Zen & Spice by clicking here. You’ll also get a copy of my free e-book, 15 Easy Veggie Sides once you confirm your subscription!
Where can I find information about collaborating with you for brands, sponsorships, product reviews, etc.?
Click here for more information!
Have more questions? Send an email at [email protected] to have yours answered!