Award winning author, media personality, dietitian: Bonnie Taub Dix
As we wrapped up 2017, I thought about the best parts of the year. An entire category of 'parts' summed up was "meeting people in real life", and Bonnie was one of those people. Social media has been a great connector for me. It lets me stay in touch with people I only get to see once a year or every other year. It's introduced me to people I admire and yes, it's also shown me the type of person I don't want to be. But digital just isn't as deep as in person and I'm thankful that on the many work trips I take throughout spring and summer I get to forge bonds with people I may not have in other circumstances. Take for example, a 3 hour each way bus ride to the Mississippi delta where fellow dietitians Liz Shaw and Holley Grainger and I really got to know each other (I mean if that's not concentrated bonding time I don't know what is). The same goes for Bonnie, where we met at a conference in a different country (Denmark). Bonnie is an absolute legend in the nutrition industry for her media work. I remember seeing her on all the big networks and sites as I started my career and she's an example of a media dietitian who speaks with knowledge, authority, grace and a warm genuine personality. (Because let's be honest, there are some people who may "do" media, but are cringey to watch.)
I'm excited for you all to meet Bonnie and I encourage you to check out her book, especially if you're someone who is overwhelmed by the grocery!
'You shouldn’t have to be a dietitian or mathematician to put food in your cart so I wanted to write a book that would help people save time, money and even calories and make food shopping simple instead of stressful.'
1. Tell us about yourself and your business.
Here’s something that most people don’t know about me: I grew up being overweight and having horrible eating habits. I didn’t eat a vegetable until I was 17 (I just said I didn’t like them without even tasting them.) But before going to college I wanted to change my negative self-image so I went on a healthy diet and… the rest is history. I planned on majoring in psychology and art…but I transferred colleges and switched my major to dietetics. Who knew that now, years later, I’d be focusing on teaching others to be mindful and be using my artistic skills at food photography!
I am the award-winning author of, Read It Before You Eat It - Taking You From Label To Table, and creator of the website and blog called, BetterThanDieting.com. As a media personality, spokesperson, motivational speaker, journalist, and corporate and brand consultant, my messages are laced with a culinary passion as a foodie, credible guidance as an experienced advisor, and the wit and wisdom you have to have as a mom. I am the Director and Owner of BTD Nutrition Consultants, LLC, with offices on Long Island and in New York City.
On a personal note, I am grateful to be able to do what I love every day and share the love with my hubby, my kids and a sweet little grandson…all foodies!
2. If you could define your food philosophy in one sentence it would be….
I strongly believe that nutritious and delicious can live in harmony on the same plate; eating delicious food is one of the greatest pleasures in life and so is looking and feeling your best.
3. What are your 3 must have foods in your kitchen?
Nuts (especially almonds), salad (I know that’s cheating because this encompasses more than one food!), and a grainy bread.
4. What led you to write this new book?
I couldn’t even count the number of clients that said, “I wish I could take you food shopping with me.” You shouldn’t have to be a dietitian or mathematician to put food in your cart so I wanted to write a book that would help people save time, money and even calories and make food shopping simple instead of stressful. My book breaks down everything on the label and also tells you what to look for if you have special issues like food allergies, diabetes, heart disease, lactose or gluten intolerance, and so on. You’ll also get an aisle-by-aisle tour of the store so that you could shop anywhere and at any price point.
5. If you could tell the you of ten years ago one thing about business or life, what would you say?
Only compare yourself to yourself. Whether it’s in business (comparing yourself to what other RDNs are doing), or in life (comparing your kids to what other kids are up to), negative self-talk rarely leads to productivity or positivity. Building your business and your life upon a foundation of confidence, will not only welcome success, but it will make you a happier and more satisfied person.
6. Food you can’t like no matter how hard you try?
Runny eggs. They’re so photogenic for Instagram and they show off a gorgeous yellow color but…I just can’t do it!! I’m a scramble girl.
7. What are your go-to resources for all things food (websites/magazines/groceries etc)?
I get lots of newsletters from TODAY, Huffington Post, and a variety of magazines to keep on the pulse of what people are interested in. Not all of this info is credible, however, yet this info gives me fuel for the stories I write, for my social media posts and for the advice I give to brands and clients.
8. Where do you go to be inspired and reboot your passion when you're stressed?
I go to my kitchen, my camera or my easel. I love to cook, bake and create recipes that look like they are ready for a photo shoot or a contest! I especially love cooking with my kids; even more important than some subjects you learn in school…I try to set an example when setting my table and teach my family how to shop for, cook and enjoy healthy food. I also get a tremendous amount of pleasure from painting. This activity is more of a luxury because once I fill my palette — I can get absorbed in creating for hours.
And of course, I adore food photography. Even though Instagram frustrates me to no end (don’t you agree??), I so enjoy connecting with others on that platform. (Hey — I’m @bonnietaubdix on IG — let’s inspire each other!)
9. What's one positive thing everyone can do for their health starting right now?
Like anything else in life — the key is balance. Too much or too little of anything is not good. When it comes to eating meals or snacks, make sure you create a plate that includes protein (cheese, almond butter, egg), whole grain carb (whole wheat pasta, beans, grainy bread), and healthy fat (avocado, nuts). You don’t have to be an iron chef to put together a meal that will be healthy and energizing. If you watch portions, you’ll also keep your weight in check without feeling the restriction of an allowed/avoid list.
10. What’s the one thing you learned this year that changed the way you think about food?
Wow — I don’t think I learned anything new about food per se, but I did have a few eye-opening experiences: When my book was relaunched, I began talking more about those stories that people hear in the media that mislead them instead of informing them. For example, statements like, “shop the perimeter of the store,” does encourage buying produce and proteins…but I like to say, “make the most of the middle,” and take advantage of beans, grains, nuts, and those foods that reside in the center of the store.
I try to help people make sense of science and clear up the confusion and fear that’s out there.
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Dietitian Nutritionist. My husband Chris and I create food and beverage photos, videos, stopmotions and recipes. And they're really cool.