Hi. I’m Michelle, a fat lady with a nutrition degree. I’m also not a dietitian.
Because, to be perfectly frank, I’m fat. And I’m telling you this up front because I don’t want you getting the wrong idea about me.
See, I’m not here to give you a stern talking-to about your weight, or your eating habits, or your lack of exercise. And I’m certainly not here to pretend that I’m perfect, that I know it all, and that you’d better do what I say or else.
Nope. Not even remotely.
So, I call myself fat because not only am I fat, I’m also not especially bothered by it. Because the size of my body, and your body, is morally neutral. Fat doesn’t equal lazy or ugly or even, necessarily, unhealthy.
It’s just a word.
This all might seem a bit strange, since I’m bigger than most people, let alone most nutritionists — but I’m a pretty normal person. And a damn good nutritionist.
Who is also fat.
I have a Dietitians of Canada-accredited bachelor’s degree in nutrition (with a focus on dietetics), and I work online to help people stop dieting and relearn normal eating. I’m 34 years old, and I’ve been doing nutrition stuff professionally (mostly in hospitals) since 2004.
I’ve completed the American Dietetic Association-approved Treating the Dieting Casualty workshop, where I learned how to counsel people in eating competence.
All told, I’ve worked in nutrition for nine years.
I’ve helped teach people how to feed themselves through a tube, how to eat for an insulin pump, what to expect from chemo, and how to cope with new physical realities.
I’ve analyzed people’s diets and read their histories. I’ve held their hands. I’ve brought their Jello.
And I’ve pretty much loved every minute of it.