Alyssa Ashmore MS, RDN, CSSD, LD
PRIVATE PRACTICE, COMMUNICATIONS & CORPORATE WELLNESS
for something nutrishus
I love learning how people found dietetics or came to work in the field of nutrition. Alyssa's story, like many others, reminds us, that being a dietitian isn't just a job. Her passion is likely shared by many of us and she continues our work in fighting misinformation and helping people, without taking away their favourite food(s)!
Why did you become a RD?
I remember reading nutrition labels at the age of 10, healthy eating being an early interest of mine. In college, my business major wasn’t quite fitting for me, and once I learned Dietetics and Nutrition was a field of study, I wasted no time in making the change. Becoming a dietitian was an action of the quote, “Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.”
What area of dietetics do you work in?
I work in Corporate Wellness, Private Practice, and Communications.
How would you explain what you do?
In my Corporate Wellness position, I work with a large company to provide individualized nutrition counseling and wellness programs. I have a lot of flexibility and autonomy in my job, which allows me to get creative in providing the best care for each patient. It’s wonderful to work with a close-knit group of healthcare practitioners and to be able to see major health changes in our patients. It also is a lot of fun to be creative with programming.
In my Private Practice, I work to help treat eating disorders and to communicate sound nutrition advice online. I enjoy working with the media to publish realistic nutrition advice that everyone can follow and to help promote an intuitive eating lifestyle.
What are your ‘typical’ daily/weekly tasks?
On a daily basis, I meet with people to perform nutrition counseling to help them find healthy eating changes that work for their lifestyle, and I develop nutrition and wellness education and programs. I frequently write about nutrition ideas and enjoy recipe development and photography.
What has been your career path?
I started in the Corporate Wellness setting while obtaining my Master’s degree. Then I worked in clinical and bariatrics before entering my current roles.
What advanced education or special training do you have?
I have a Master’s degree in Food and Nutrition, am a Board Certified Sports Dietitian, and have a Certificate of Training in Adult Weight Management.
In an ideal world, what does the industry look like 5 years from now?
In 5 years, I hope to see the industry relying on Registered Dietitians for nutrition information. It concerns me with how much misinformation is out there, and I know people personally who have suffered from it. I see RDs playing an even bigger role in health and wellness, as well as many other fields we can’t even dream of now!
What are challenges you encounter as a RD?
In my work, one of the biggest challenges I face is getting people to make their first appointment. I hear assumptions others have of RDs, including that they think they already know what I will tell them or that they think I’ll just tell them what they can’t eat. This is so far from the truth! Then, another major challenge is correcting misinformation about food and nutrition, such as that “carbs are bad” or that “bananas have too much sugar.” Again, not the truth! I work hard to help people fit their favorite foods into their eating plan.
What are you passionate about in dietetics?
I strongly believe in helping people learn how to eat, as well as helping people make peace with food. Over and over, I see the harm that restrictive diets, fear mongering and the diet mentality have in so many areas of one’s life. On the plus side, I see the relief that one has when they can enjoy all foods without shame and all the areas of their life that can be set free. I think that healthy eating also requires a component of healthy balance and a healthy mind.
More about Alyssa:
Pinterest: Alyssa Ashmore