1. Tell us a bit about yourself? I was born in the beautiful country of Colombia, and was raised in a small family who appreciated food and cooked daily. I started helping in the kitchen when I was 8 or 9 years old. Chopping onions, tomatoes and garlic was a regular task because we used them in virtually every meal. We regularly visited farmer’s markets to buy lots of fruits and vegetables for the week. That probably explains my existing obsession with farmer’s markets. Thanks to my family and good fortune, choosing nutrition as a career came natural to me.
2. What’s your favorite part about being a dietitian? I love and feel so lucky that I am doing exactly what I was supposed to do in this life, empowering people to make wise food choices and caring for their bodies. Nutrition, working with the media, and counseling are my passions. I also love the creative aspect of my job, whether it’s preparing for a presentation, for a media segment or creating a recipe.
3. Describe what your typical week looks like? I own a nutrition consulting company. My expertise is weight management, mindful eating, diabetes, and digestive disorders. Two to three days a week, I see my patients for nutrition consultation. The other days, I develop and monitor the provision of special diets for children with food allergies or special nutritional needs. In the last few years, I have been developing food recipes, and I enjoy experimenting with food ingredients and my camera.
In between all that, I also write a blog for my website and for a yoga website. I am also a food industry consultant and I am frequently sought by national and local media. I usually start my day by putting some nutrition wisdom in the world via twitter!
4. How do you find balance between work & personal? Working out gives me those magical endorphins and serotonin that my body craves for wellbeing and relaxation. But for inner peace and balance, I meditate 5 to 7 days a week and recently started practicing Reiki. I am mindful that my body allows me to do so much throughout the day and it is my responsibility to provide it with the best fuel and care.
5. What are 3 foods you can’t live without? Nooooo, that is one difficult task to decide on only 3 foods. But if I must choose, I love garbanzos, beans and lentils; they are so versatile and nutrient packed and growing up I had two or three of those every week. But I must disclose that I think all fruits and vegetables are sexy, delicious and nutritious!
Ximena, thank you so much for sharing yourself with the Food Heaven community! To learn more about what Ximena is up to, check out her website and follow her on twitter!