Perth-based Simone favours practical approach to food and nutrition. She’s also one of our amazing Casa Authors. Here she talks to us about all things nutrition, with a slice of life.
When and how did you decide you’d become a Nutritionist?
Before I began studying nutrition I used to buy cookbooks all the time. I enjoyed (and still do enjoy) getting in the kitchen inventing recipes. I was my own guinea pig with regards to trying out new foods and fitness regimes.
After working in hospitality and then as a Vet Nurse for 6 years and knowing it wasn’t exactly the right fit, I finally realised that food, health and fitness is what I love most. I began studying nutrition at Curtin University in 2009 and am now the proud founder of GingerNotes as a self-employed health guru!
As a Nutritionist and Mum, how do you nourish yourself each day?
I always start the day with a glass of water, and a splash of cold water on my face. This helps cleanse my system after a restful fast and reboots my metabolism.
As for food, I usually start my day fresh with fruits, nuts and plant-based milk in my coffee (yes I love the bitter aromatic coffee bean). This morning ritual sets me up to have a healthy, energetic day.
Throughout the day I keep a mindful approach to my food choices and the way they make me feel, choosing wholefoods and nutrient dense ingredients. I also enjoy jogging to keep me mentally balanced but if I can’t fit this in we make an effort to at least go for a brisk walk around the neighbourhood for sunshine and fresh air.
Since becoming a Mum I made an effort keep my regular exercise up, and it feels like part of any regular day. I’m multi-tasking all the time though. But it is only temporary and I enjoy my time with my daughter, and being in the kitchen creating healthy treats for her, then seeing her discover new flavours and textures.
What are 3 of your favourite meals to cook?
- Healthy wholesome muffins (without refined sugars or flours) are my favourite
- Gluten free crackers with different nutritious stacks on top. My favourite is a basil pesto spread with mixed greens and thinly sliced pear or roasted pumpkin and tuna
- Anything cooked with herbs and spices to enhance flavour and stimulate the senses.
Which foods can you absolutely not live without?
- Plant-based milk and coffee
- Walnuts with pears – oh my goodness YUM!
- Spicy tuna & chicken
- Baby spinach and sweet potato
- Oats and berries
- Coconut flour – this is fast becoming my favourite all-time cooking ingredient.
Do you believe in supplements?
There may be times the mind and body requires a need for supplementary support. Pregnancy, post natal, iron deficiency, osteoporosis, many non-communicable or autoimmune disease are just a few important examples. I think if you begin a supplement it should be because it has been recommended by a qualified health professional in order to prevent any risk associated. This area is very controversial and advice is best given when working 1:1 with clients so it is a tailored evaluated approach.
Top 5 nutrition tips to help stay healthy?
- Drink plenty of cleansing fluids such as herbal tea and water
- Keep active in a way that brings inspiration to your day
- Eat mainly wholefoods and include a variety
- Get creative in the kitchen and learn to love the power of your senses
- Never restrict your diet. From experience, it is a dangerous journey.
Top tips for those looking to start a career in nutrition?
If you were looking to go to university within Western Australia I would recommend Curtin University, Bentley. They have very good facilities there as well as following the DAA principles.
There is a lot of science to the course in general (chemistry, biochemistry) so you will need a foundation of this knowledge hopefully from high school and be willing to study hard! It is a science degree after all.
If you love the idea of promoting realistic, scientific and holistic-based health and wellness, to the best of your knowledge and ability, and you enjoy chatting with people (and have a love for food!), this just might be your dream career!
Got a question for Simone? Ask away via the comment section below.
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