In the news

Your Burning Questions: Q & A Submission

Are you feeling confused? Let’s get some questions answered because you need answers.

pablo fire
Burning questions!  Need answered!

Whether you haven’t had the time to delve into the research literature yourself or you’re just kind of curious about the best way to defrost shrimp, I’m here for you.


  • Is it true that “_________”?
  • I heard that “________.”  What’s up with that?
  • Do you know about a good guide to “_____”?
  • What do you think of “this news story”?
  • What are the disadvantages to following (new popular) diet?
  • I have “these five ingredients” in my fridge and have no idea what to make for supper– any ideas?

Not Eligible:

  • Individual nutrition advice.  I can point people to generic resources but cannot provide individual, personalized advice without doing a more detailed interview with you.
  • Product promotions.  I review products when something appeals to me.

Send me your questions in the form below!

Think you need more specific help?  Get in touch.  Contact me by clicking here.


Book review

Book Review: Landwhale by Jes Baker

When did you last read a memoir that simultaneously made you want to laugh and cry?  Jes Baker wrote the page-turner Landwhale in which she:

  • opens up her soul to disclose fears ranging from amusement park rides to relationships,
  • reveals the multi-generational process through which they developed their body image,
  • throws in a critique of the fat acceptance movement while also being an avid advocate.

Jes Baker’s memoir is a compelling, grounded story of her life.  Her experiences open the reader’s eyes to how our society shapes who we become.  Her (occasional mis-) adventures illustrate that challenges that each of us, our families, and our neighbors face when it comes to weight, bodies, and food. Some of these stories are so funny you laugh out loud.  Others are devastating.  On occasion, I wanted to step into her story and straighten out Person A who was completely wrong about ABC.  Other times, I wanted to wrap an arm around her and make a cup of tea.

Her moments of revelation– sometimes taking years of work to find– suggest that an individual can fight the social norms that become internalized to move beyond self-hatred.  Jes Baker is fortunate; she found mental health support, a partner, and even a dietitian who has helped her stay on a path of working through her history.  As she says, it is a continuous process for people, not a single battle.  However, the greater question of whether any one person should have to fight that inner battle remains a problem for all of society to address.  Her book is a call for people to change their approach (to themselves and others) and call for change in our social institutions.


Learn more about Jes Baker at her website.

You can purchase the book here.

And a little bit about Health At Every Size.

Caveat: Readers who struggle with dieting, body image, trauma, and weight may find aspects of the book very difficult to read.  I suggest doing so with a supportive group if you are concerned about the emotional impact.  This is also aimed at an adult audience (PG-13 if not R).

I purchase all items I review.  Links may be Amazon Affiliate links.


In the news

How to Succeed at Weight Loss

Is it possible? Certainly, for some people, but far more people struggle with weight loss than who trot through their goals adding gold stars to their weight charts. In fact, I tend to discourage clients from “dieting” as frequent dieters tend to gain weight over time and experience stress. The article Why Diets Fail by a colleague from my PhD program at Cornell explains a few reasons why humans beings who live around other humans beings see their pants sizes stay the same… even when they are working hard. Kevin Klatt writes:

[Courtney Plush, R.D.,] explained some of the unique pitfalls of the “diet mentality.” She tells SELF that on one hand, weight loss diets work (in theory) because if you create a set of rules that reduce calorie intake, you will likely lose weight while you follow those rules. But (in practice), diets tend not to work because most people embark on caloric restriction for a set period of time. Once the diet “ends,” they’re likely to regain the weight. Diets frequently fail because “…they have an endpoint and are not real lifestyle change,” Plush says.

What to do when you are facing all these barriers? Great question. This is where working with people can help. Focus on why you are thinking about dieting.  Perhaps it’s a quality of life issue that may be address more effectively through other changes.  I often choose other approaches when working with clients– we focus on mindful eating, achieving health goals unrelated to the scale, and addressing gastrointestinal discomfort.  Often, increased awareness of eating habits can help you improve your blood pressure or cut back on medications.

Above all else, set reasonable goals. Change your habits. And get people on your side. Registered Dietitian Nutritionists can help support you in developing a plan individualized to you.