I’ve been working hard behind the scenes to come up with a way of describing to you what me and my business is really all about.
I love being a Paediatric Dietitian and I really thrive on helping people which is part of the reason why I still do my NHS role alongside running ‘The Children’s Nutritionist’.
Whether you see me in the NHS or privately or whether you read my blog or do one of my online courses or classes, there are 3 pillars that underpin the way I explore your child’s eating in order to assess and advise you.
Here they are:
This is all about food and the nutrients they provide. I’m looking at what your child’s nutritional requirements are and what they currently eat to see if there are any gaps. I’m looking at what you shop for, how you cook food, and how it’s presented to your child.
I’ll help you with a strategy for your child’s requests for snacks and plan how to manage sugary and sweet foods, I work out portion sizes, help you decide on organic vs conventional food, help you navigate food shopping, show you how to interpret food labels and marketing claims seen on food packaging, and help you organise balanced meal plans.
This is all about the everyday feeding practices that you probably do subconsciously. I’m looking at how mealtimes happen in your home, how you talk about food, interact around food, meals and snacks, rules and routines and how you respond to your child, essentially it’s your family’s feeding style.
Each one of us has a food parenting style, we were taught it subconsciously by the way we were parented around food ourselves when we were children. We carry these forward with our children now.
Think back to how you were parented around food, was it a positive experience or were you ever forced to eat food you didn’t want to or punished for not eating something. Do you remember how your parents managed indulgent foods like biscuits, were they hidden away or freely available? Or perhaps you fended for yourself because your parents weren’t around much when you were growing up?
One of the things I explore is how you were parented around food, and how this had developed into your own style. Some of us do the same, some of us do the opposite! Most of all I look at how we can make things better for your child.
This is all about understanding the developmental stage of your child so you have the right expectations for their abilities. Its also about how you teach your child about food, nutrition and eating in a developmentally appropriate way so that as they grow up they make good decisions about what to put on their plates or what to buy when they are out and about with their friends.
I’ve learned over the past 20+ years that it’s so important to put all three components together – looking at the WHOLE child – if you want to raise a happy healthy eater.
I’ve called this the NOURISH – NURTURE – THRIVE – Continuum and as this graphic shows, this goes round and round throughout childhood. As your child grows and develops into a young adult, each part changes and how you respond will need to adapt.
When our children have an eating problem, as parents we tend to focus on the food, the NOURISH part. For example giving them high-calorie foods to gain weight, or low calories so they don’t gain so much – skipping snacks so they’ll eat better at dinner – cooking the same meals because you know they’ll eat them etc.
Often it isn’t just the food that needs to change, it’s the NURTURE part – feeding – and the THRIVE part – teaching & appreciating child development too.
This is why my clients see success with their children’s eating after working with me, I truly believe it’s crucial to look at the whole child – all three pillars together.
If you like the sound of this approach, I think you are going to love my newest venture. Its called the Happy Healthy Eaters Club
where every month there is a brand new masterclass taught by either myself or a guest expert. We’re teaching an aspect of the NOURISH – NURTURE – THRIVE Continuum, as you can imagine there is a lot to learn!
Doors open in August 2020 and I will only be allowing new members 4 times a year. If you pop your name on my waiting list you’ll be offered a heavily discounted founding member price. The link is here