What Dietitians Really Eat

Amid the latest fad diets and celebrity weight-loss secrets, experts’ opinions are often overlooked.

Vice-president of Dietitians New Zealand, dietitian Hannah Cullinane, says International Dietitians Day is an opportunity for the professionals to get a word in.

While anyone can call themselves a nutritionist (to become registered requires training), dietitians must complete around five years of university study to get qualified.

“People often think [dietitians] are the food police,” she says, “but we’re not!”.

To prove it, she shares with us what dietitians really eat, including her top tips for easy healthy eating, and what she thinks of the latest fad diets.


You’ll struggle to find a dietitian who doesn’t have breakfast, Cullinane says.”It’s easy to get bored with breakfast, so I’d have different breakfasts most days. During the week it mainly consists of muesli, yogurt, canned fruit. At the weekend it would be something more exciting, like poached eggs, or a hot cross bun. Mmm, I love hot cross buns!”


“My number one tip for healthy eating is ‘plan-over’,” Cullinane says.

“This is basically when you cook enough dinner so that it becomes your lunch the next day. Doing this stops me buying less healthy choices during the day, and saves me money.”

For example, if you’re having wraps for dinner, use the leftover filling for a salad the next day.


Most dietitians follow the “plate model”.

This means half of an ordinary sized dinner plate being filled with vegetables, one quarter with protein-rich food, and one quarter with your choice of a carbohydrate-rich food.

Cullinane says she prefers to cook “one-pan meals” such as risottos, curries, stir fry dishes, mainly because it’s easy – and limits dishes.

“I smuggle peas into everything. I cannot rate those vegetables highly enough. They’re full of protein and fibre, and they’re cheap.”

Cullinane says meals should make the most of seasonal foods. As we approach winter, soups, stews and slow-cooked meals are healthy and inexpensive choices.


Cullinane snacks mainly on fruit, or canned tuna and crackers, but admits to enjoy regular sweet treats.

“My most common snacks are [mini chocolate bars] – they’re basically two squares of chocolate. I like to factor treats in all the time so I don’t feel like I’m missing out,” she says.


Cullinane describes herself as “a massive foodie”.

“Food needs to be tasty and enjoyable.

“If 90 per cent of the time you’re doing well, then don’t worry about the 10 per cent of the time when you’re not. We’re human, and humans have bad days. If one weekend you have a decadent day for a celebration, then enjoy it, that’s part of what makes food great.”

Personally, Cullinane would prefer to play social sport or run outside over going to the gym.

Team sports are good, she says, because they’re social, and you’re more likely to continue when you’re committed to a team.

“I like picking new goals and challenges. At the moment I’m training for a full marathon, which is damn ambitious!”


– Paleo diet:

The paleolithic diet is based on the presumed diet of cavemen. It consists mainly of fish, grass-fed pasture raised meats, eggs, vegetables, fruit, and excludes grains, legumes, dairy products, potatoes, refined salt, refined sugar and processed oils.

“There are both good and bad things about this diet,” Cullinane says.

“It’s good in that it focuses on whole foods and avoids overly processed foods. It has a big focus on fruit and vegetables and that’s fabulous.

“But, it’s extreme, and cuts out what most dietitians would consider to be very important foods. For me, cutting out dairy is really dangerous as it’s an important source of calcium, especially for women. It also says to cut legumes, which are a really affordable source of protein.”

– The fast diet:

Otherwise known as the 5:2. That’s five days of normal eating, with little thought to calorie control, then, on the other two days, you eat a quarter of your recommended daily calorie quota. (About 500 calories for women, and 600 for men).

Cullinane says this diet hasn’t really taken off in New Zealand, “probably because it’s so ‘out there'”.

“I would hate to be ravenously hungry for two days a week.

“Plus, the evidence behind it isn’t really there yet, so you’re unlikely to get dietitians recommending it. For people with a lot of weight to lose, it could be helpful to start with, but it’s not sustainable.”

– Gluten-free:

Going gluten-free seems rather on trend at the moment, but if you’re not gluten intolerant, there’s no benefit to removing the protein from your diet, Cullinane says.

“For people who have an intolerance, or Coeliac disease, then a gluten free diet is needed from a medical perspective. But otherwise I wouldn’t recommend a gluten free diet. Mainly because when you try to cut out major foods from your diet you’re at risk of vitamin and mineral deficiencies.

“If you’re following a gluten free diet you should really be seeking nutritional help to make sure you’re meeting your dietary requirements.”

– Fairfax NZ News


Original Story Here


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    • Lo<3
    • March 12, 2014

    What Are Some Good Weight Loss Tips? I know eating right and exercise which i try my best to do both but is there anything else I can do? I am not like overweight but i just want to have a better body.

    1. Reply

      Weight Loss Tips
      –Drink more water–
      –Increase your protein intake–
      –Eat Negative calorie food —
      –Eat slowly–
      –Cut down the sugar intake—
      –Do not skip meals–
      –Eat breakfast everyday —
      –Eat smaller, more frequent meals–
      –Exercise(Aerobics and Strength Training)
      –Interval Training – great way to boost metabolism–
      –Replace white rice, bread, and pasta with brown rice and whole-grain products–

      online weight loss workout videos

      Yoga And Weight Loss

  1. Reply

    QUICK TIPS FOR WEIGHT LOSS? Anyone have any quick tips for quick weightloss? any foods i can eat/ drinkk??

    1. Reply

      Weight loss tip 1: Decide how much weight you need to lose – Most people start their weight loss journey by claiming to be xyz kilos overweight. This isn’t a healthy way to project or aim for weight loss. Calculate your desired weight against your height by using reliable methods like the BMI, and set a healthy weight loss target. This is often half the battle won.

      Weight loss tip 2: Time management – This is quite often overlooked. Decide which part of your day will be dedicated to exercise, when in the week you will stock up on groceries, and when you will do the cooking – all within your current work and home life routine. If you don’t do this now, your days will be rushed and unplanned, and you won’t be able to sustain your weight loss efforts.

      Weight loss tip 3: Stock your kitchen – Keep your house well-stocked with fruits, vegetables, healthy meats, grains, cereals, spices, and flavourers. Follow our tricks to healthy cooking, cooking vegetables for the week, and low-fat cooking posts to understand how best you can stock your kitchen with healthy and delicious ingredients. All of this will go into helping the next step – cooking healthy meals at home.

      Weight loss tip 4: Eat healthy homecooked meals – Whether it’s you who’s cooking, a family member, or house help, ensure that every one practises healthy cooking methods, and ingredients. Ask any person who’s lost weight the healthy way, and you will always hear about how healthy homecooked meals were a big reason behind it. Use less oil, low salt, fresh produce, and you’ll start seeing results in no time.

      Weight loss tip 5 : Start a cardio + weights workout – A healthy weight loss programme is incomplete without a good exercise routine, and weight training mixed with cardio is the best way to lose weight. Of course, variations and forms exist, but any workout that stresses on muscle tone and increased heart rate will always help you lose weight and keep it off. You can either start a home workout today, or rely on gyms for fitness training.

      Weight loss tip 6: Alter your snacking habits . Set those French fries aside, skip that aerated drink, and ban those unhealthy deep fried samosas. Explore the healthy snack world and you will find several appetisers, party snacks, movie snacks and meal accompaniments that’ll satisfy every craving of yours.

      Weight loss tip 7: Have at least one active hobby – It isn’t sufficient to rely on just 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Moving from bed to office chair, and back to bed, isn’t a healthy way to live. Buy a motion sensor gaming console that lets you enjoy social games with friends and family, plan weekend trips, clean your house once a week, dance, play sports, the list is endless. Get out of the coffee shop and dining table rut, and you’ll have fun along with the healthy weight loss

      Weight loss tip 9: Drink plenty of water – You’ve known that your body relies heavily on water for all important bodily functions, and yet you skimp on drinking adequate quantities of water every day. Well, it’s time to stop that. Check out some exciting ways to make water interesting and you’ll be packing it away in no time. Do not forget to carry a water bottle to your workout, and take a few sips after every 2-3 minutes of exercise.

      Weight loss tip 10: Plan healthy vacations – Why go all the way with healthy weight loss, when one tiny vacation will just come along and topple it all? Healthy vacations aren’t impossible. Take a look at how you can eat smart on a holiday, and then at bodyweight workouts that you can carry with you wherever you go, to understand how to holiday right. Above all, remember that these are lifelong habits that’ll help you stay fit forever and not short term weight loss quickfixes

      good luck.

  2. Reply

    Weight Loss!!!!!!!!!!? Im 15 yr old guy and i need 2 lose weight any tips

    1. Reply

      Weight Loss Tips

      The most important thing to remember as you begin any weight loss plan is that there is no quick fix or magic pill that will help you lose your extra pounds and keep them off. The most successful weight loss plans combine healthy eating, balanced nutrition and regular exercise to help you lose weight. Often, people find themselves in a perpetual diet cycle, always thinking they have a few pounds to lose, or yo-yo dieting – losing weight and then gaining it right back, only to start dieting again. By putting more emphasis on improving your health, experts agree that you can raise your overall self–esteem, resulting in healthier eating habits, long-term weight loss and improved health. Successful weight loss over the long term will likely include: adhering to a healthy lifestyle (including nutritious foods and physical activity), making changes in the way you think about food, and paying attention to reasons why you eat (emotions, boredom, or reward vs. actually being hungry). To lose weight, you must eat fewer calories than your body uses. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to eat less food. There are many ways you can continue to enjoy foods you like while working towards your weight loss goals, creating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle: Create lower-calorie versions of some of your favorite dishes by substituting low-calorie fruits and vegetables in place of higher-calorie ingredients. The water and fiber in fruits and vegetables will add volume to your dishes, so you can eat the same amount of food with fewer calories. Most fruits and vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories and are filling. Choose sensible portion sizes. Using your measuring cups at home will help you learn how large a recommended serving size really is.When dining out, try splitting an entrée with a friend or family member or saving half of your food for later. Choose low-fat dairy and meat products. In addition to helping you lose weight, low-fat dairy products can help to prevent and lower high blood pressure. Engage in daily physical activity. Engaging in some kind of physical activity – whether it be gardening, dancing, walking, or playing golf or tennis – will enliven your physical and mental health and help to keep the extra pounds off. Plan your meals and snacks ahead of time and tune into the feelings you experience while eating. By planning your meals ahead of time, you will be less likely to binge on less healthy foods and more inclined to eat in moderation and when you are truly hungry (not when you are feeling unpleasant feelings such as boredom, stress, or loneliness).

  3. Reply

    Weight Loss Tips Please? :)? I’m 14
    5ft 7.6
    12st 8lbs
    Im overweight 🙁
    any tips on how to lose weight quicker and easier 😀

    1. Reply

      This tips is long but it help me a lot i hope it help u too!

      cardio exercise and eating breakfast fruits, whole grain cereals and egg-white are great options help boost metabolism which help lose weight faster & burn more calories so eat egg in every morning omelet or boiled etc..to get protein which important for your body for losing weight
      stay way from junk food, fries

      Do 30 minutes of cardio training [dancing, jogging, aerobics, yoga , running, bicycle, swimming, kick boxing … ] and 30 minutes of strength train [weights, arms, setup, crunches for abs, legs workout and stretches]
      workout 3-6 times on week. 30min or 1-2 hours

      # Walk 30 minutes a day – no excuses
      # dont set watch TV or computer more than 2 hours stay active.
      # Be aware when you eating dont eat front TV, Eat when you are hungry & eat slowly
      # Restock your kitchen with healthy food
      # dont skip meals eat every 4 hours & eat 3 healthy small meals & 2 healthy snacks instead 3 big meals
      # Eat when you are hungry & eat slowly, chew more!
      # Reduce portions by using smaller plates & bowls (9 inch diameter instead of 11+ inch)
      # Eat 9 handfuls of vegetables more than fruits each day also eat 1 small handful nuts
      # you have to learn about calories you should take, look & learn label on sodium,sugar,fat,carb,calorie and read ingredients
      # Avoid trans fat in label (Avoid partially hydrogenated oils,Shortening, palm kernel oil and coconut oil) and saturated fats at all cost
      # Avoid white food such as enriched wheat flour/white flour (white bread and rice, potatoes,white starches – white pasta, crackers, cakes,donuts,pizza ,and simple sugar, including high fructose corn syrup. Sugar, sugar, sugar. The #1 killer for trying to lose belly fat, get a 6 pack, or achieving that flat, tight, sexy stomach. Avoid high fat foods (butter,margarine, cheese, milk ) go for low fat
      try to avoid processed or refined carbohydrates
      # Drink one or two glasses of water before a meal to help fill you stomach with fewer food calories
      # Eat less fat ,sugar and your sodium (salt) recommends less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium daily—that’s about 1 teaspoon of salt. our bodies’ needs (about 1,500 milligrams) .
      #Fifteen percent of your calories should come from protein, 25 to 35 percent from fat and the rest from carbohydrates.
      # Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat and nonfat dairy, legumes, fish and lean meat should all be incorporated into your diet.
      # Soybean, canola, olive, safflower, sunflower and corn oil are all healthy oils you should use when cooking and preparing foods.
      Also, cooking medium heat is ideal but oil alone is not recommended.
      # All fresh vegetables and fruits, such as green leafy vegetables and greens, broccoli, cauliflower, green beans, carrots, tomatoes, etc. Eat plenty of fiber-rich vegetables (dark leafy greens—good; corn–not so good), beans (all of them), and fruit (apples, pears, peaches, and berries have a lower GI than tropical fruits, like papaya and mangoes).
      # Complex Carbohydrates
      * Whole grains, pastas and cereals, brown rice, whole wheat bread, oats, millet, barley, kasha, cornmeal, polenta, etc.
      # Stop eating 2-3 hours before bed time & dont eat carbs on dinner and sleep night 8 hours,
      # Fill up 25-30 grams of fiber.
      #Drink plenty of water before, during & after workout it increase your muscle tone is also important to lose weight keep hydrated, drink 8 glasses of water
      # dont eat under than 1,200 calories
      # if you take in more calories than you burn through daily activity and exercise you’ll gain weight__regardless of whether those calories come from “good” natural foods or “bad” processed meals. it’s that simple: Eat less exercise more,
      Best Fats; Monounsaturated Fat Foods
      * Avocado * Oil (canola, olive, peanut, sesame) * Olives (all)
      * Nuts * Peanut butter, old-fashioned * Sesame seeds

      Good Fats: Polyunsaturated Fat Foods
      * Margarine (first ingredient is polyunsaturated oil)
      * Mayonnaise (regular or reduced-fat)
      * Nuts (walnuts) * Poultry
      * Oil (corn, safflower, soybean, cottonseed)
      * Salad dressing (regular & reduced-fat)
      * Seeds (pumpkin, sunflower) * Liquid Vegetable Oil * Eggs * Meat

      Bad Fats:Saturated Fats ( no more than 7% saturated fats)
      * Bacon & bacon grease * Cheese * Milk
      * Butter (stick, whipped, reduced-fat) * Eggs
      * Coconut Oil * Cream * Cream cheese
      * Ice cream * Lard & salt pork * Palm kernel oil * Cocoa Butter

      Bad Fats: Trans Fats (no more than 1% trans fats)
      look in ingredients Partially Hydrogenated Fats or Shortening
      * Margarine (stick) * Nondairy creamers * Baked Goods
      * Fired Foods * Also Found in Naturally In Meat & Dairy Products In Small Amount

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