Dr. Daisy & Co has some amazingly talented team members so we wanted to share some of what makes them who they are. This month we will be speaking with Emily Braaten, MS, RD , a Registered Dietitian at Dr. Daisy & Co in Rockville, MD. Emily specializes in helping those struggling with eating disorders, body image, and disordered eating. She also specializes in gastrointestinal disorders.
Tell me a little bit about yourself and what fueled your interest in nutrition?
In college, I started on the pre-med route. I came to realize that I wanted to work with human biology but felt less passionate about being a doctor, so I strayed into nutrition and public health. It was there that I saw how confusing food messaging is! Being a dietitian felt like the best way to help people ignore the marketing hype, build sustainable habits, and figure out how to eat.
What is one piece of advice that you would give someone who is struggling with their nutrition or body image?
Feeling better in your body is more about changing the way you feel rather than changing your body.
Fun fact about you?
2020 is the year of hobbies! I'm planning to try my hand at gardening, watercolor painting and salsa dancing.
What’s your favorite quote or mantra you can’t live without?
"To know that even one life has breathed easier because you have lived--this is to have succeeded" - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Do you see a shift happening in public perceptions of nutrition?
It seems to be moving in opposite directions simultaneously, where people value specialization (i.e. nutrition for women's health, for athletes, for cardiovascular risk, etc.) but also think they're equipped to enact diets they found on the internet without any medical oversight or professional guidance. It's becoming both niche and DIY at the same time.
What skills do you consider to be essential to work in this industry?
Empathy and cognitive flexibility. We've got to truly listen to our clients' experiences to ensure that our own agendas and biases aren't getting in the way of providing good care, and we have to appreciate that we don't know everything and the scientific literature on nutrition is always expanding.
To read Emily's formal education and work bio click here.