A day on a plate of a Dietitian
I work every day with people who are trying to change their eating to improve their health, feel more energy and manage hunger and cravings. I love to offer people time saving tips, places to look for recipes and ways to make sure their food is nutritious even if they’re in a hurry. This often makes people ask – what do you eat? So here it is! A day in the life of a dietitian (roughly).
I do want to preface this by saying that this diet is specific to me, I am a young(ish), 5’7” female who exercises for an hour most days. This diet is almost definitely not the right one for you but if you’d like to me to help you find what is you’re welcome to ask me.
7:30am wake up
I am not, I repeat NOT, a morning person. So I manage to pull myself out of bed each morning but I’m usually in a rush to get ready.
Although I’m in such a rush I always make time for breakfast, albeit a quick one. My favourite breakfast is Greek yogurt, home-made stewed fruit and granola. Sometimes I have cereal with milk but I find that, because this is lower in protein, it doesn’t keep me full for as long. I try to pick cereals and granolas which are low in sugar and high in fibre so that they digest more slowly and I don’t get hungry too soon throughout the morning.
I’m trying to stay away from too much coffee because I personally don’t like being overly dependent on caffeine. I do have a reasonable commute so I’ll drink a cup of coffee if I’m tired or tea if I’m feeling ok on the way to work. Then I drink water (a lot of water!). I have a bottle with a straw so I can drink a lot quickly and I try to drink 2-3 bottles a day.
Despite trying my best with breakfast I always find myself starving mid-morning so I’ll break out a high protein yogurt. I know that there are yogurts on the market right now that have no sugar at all and are sweetened with stevia (eg. Yopro, Chobani Fit) but I find I don’t stay full for very long after eating these. My personal choices is yogurt with fruit and a little sugar instead. My favourite right now is Siggi’s because it has heaps of calcium in it!
You might be starting to realise that I eat often. This is definitely true about me and I find it the best way to avoid hunger while not feeling overly full and lethargic. I know other people feel differently so I don’t recommend this eating pattern unless it works for others as well as it works for me. For lunch I tend to eat leftovers (see dinner) or if I’m in a pinch I might pack a cheese and salad wholegrain sandwich or a tuna meal. I usually add a piece of fruit on the side for extra fibre and energy.
As I’m wrapping up my day at work I’ll usually reach for some fruit and nuts. Sometimes I’m not really hungry at this time so I have just one or nothing at all.
6:00pm pre-exercise snack
In general I’ll do some kind of exercise after work. I tend to change it up a bit so I might do a gym session, pilates class, dance class or yoga. I get bored with too much of the same thing so, if you ask me, there’s usually something new! Before I go I like to have a banana so I don’t run out of energy half way through.
When I’m done with my exercise for the day I head home to make dinner. Lately I’ve really been enjoying Hello Fresh, it’s a little time consuming so I only get it every other week but it gives you a range of flavours and keeps life interesting. The only concern I have with it is that the portions aren’t always right for me, I often make a 2 person meal go 3 ways because, for me, it’s too much food. On the other days I might have meat and veg or chicken and salad. I keep a batch of Bolognese sauce in the freezer at all times in case of emergencies (ie. Really tiring days) and if I’ve really run out of food I eat eggs on toast with a plain old carrot on the side.
I’m the kind of person that tends to get food cravings after dinner. I can often reach for something sweet especially if I have had a tiring or stressful day. Sometimes this means I’ll have an ice cream and, in this case, I tend to get the stick ice creams to help with portion control. If I’m genuinely hungry I might have a yogurt or, if not, I’ll try a herbal tea (chamomile is my favourite) to calm me down ready for sleep. You might think this is really late to be eating but, in my book, any hungry time is a good eating time so I’m not against late snacking if you need it.