From tips on living life, to loving your body, and seizing the moment we chat with clinical nutritionist and wellness blogger Naturally Nina.
GV: What are your top three tips on how to live life to the fullest?
NN: Firstly, practice gratitude every day. Life can get stressful and it’s so easy to get caught up worrying about things like our jobs, finances, body image and other factors in life that bring us down. Taking the time out each day to remind ourselves of a few things we are grateful can honestly make a world of difference to how we feel and see things!
Secondly, eat to nourish and fuel your body. Forget diets. Focus on eating a variety of wholesome, nutrient-dense foods which are going to provide you with high quality energy and enable you to feel and function at your best. And find joy in eating wholesome foods – try new recipes, visit farmers markets, and make your plate colourful and full of flavour!
Lastly, find happiness in little things that you can do on a daily basis to help you unwind, recharge and feel good. Even if it’s just 15 minutes a day to go for a walk outside, do some stretching, call a friend, read or have a solo dance party – make it a priority!
GV: We love that you’re big on encouraging people to have a healthy relationship with food! What does this mean to you, and why do you feel it is so important?
NN: A healthy relationship with food means feeling at peace within yourself and what you choose to eat. It means not feeling deprived, overwhelmed, or stress and anxious about food either. When it comes to food, I believe people should have the ability to be flexible, spontaneous and social, and that they should eat to nourish their body, mind and soul. I feel this because our relationship with food has a huge impact on all areas of our health and wellbeing from our mental and emotional, to our physical and social health. When it comes to food, mindset is everything.
GV: What inspired you to become a nutritionist and what do you love most about your job?
NN: Growing up in competitive sport, I developed a huge passion for nutrition and seeing the impact what I ate had on my performance. I was always fascinated by how the human body worked and how food can influence that! What I love most about my job is being able to help people work towards and achieve their goals. Whether I’m helping someone make peace with food, optimise their sports performance, improve their digestion, gain strength, whatever really, it’s just so rewarding!
GV: If there is one thing you could tell your younger self what would it be and why?
NN: Start TODAY. When I was younger, I was always waiting for the ‘perfect’ time, that moment where I would feel ready and have all the answers, or telling myself I would start tomorrow or next week. Years would pass and I would find myself still doing the exact same things that kept me miserable, weak and unhealthy. I missed out so many incredible opportunities that I was passionate about simply because of my fear of change and that things wouldn’t be ‘perfect’. The truth is, we never feel ready, we just have to show up for ourselves, be strong and do it anyway.
GV: Can you share something about yourself that not everyone knows?
NN: I have type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune condition where my pancreas doesn’t produce insulin (the hormone needed for our bodies to utilise carbohydrates as energy). So, I spend a lot of my time having to monitor blood glucose levels, inject insulin, count carbs and match insulin doses accordingly. I was diagnosed when I was nine years old and it was also a big factor in me developing such a passion for health and nutrition. While it’s a full-time job and never gets any easier, it has also given me so much strength, patience, resilience and discipline, which I’m very grateful for!
GV: Lastly, we know food is a big part of your life so before you go, what’s your favourite go-to recipe at the moment?