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02 September 2014 Last updated
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Healthy body

Eat like a nutritionist

Why bother with the latest new food craze when you can go directly to the knowledge source? We’ve caught up with some of our favourite food and well-being experts to find out what they eat, when they eat it and which foods they never ever touch

By Louisa Wilkins, Editor
8 Jul 2013 | 02:09 pm
  • Source:Supplied picture

Shiren Janus, dietitian at Health Factory 
(www.healthfactory.com 04 347 3808), says 
we should try to get the day off to a great start.

My favourite breakfast is... an omelette made with one whole egg and two egg whites, with an array of colourful chopped vegetables, served with a slice of wholemeal toast. This would provide the major macronutrients along with fibre and antioxidants for a great start to the day.
For lunch I like... a balanced meal containing wholegrains, dairy/protein and vegetables, which I can take with me to work. For example, a tortilla wrap with a tablespoon of honey mustard, filled with grilled chicken breast, beansprouts and sliced tomatoes.
My ideal dinner... needs to be light and nutrient-rich at the same time, such as seared salmon with steamed broccoli and sweet potatoes.
When I’m in a rush in the morning... I eat oats or 
bran-rich cereal with low-fat or skimmed milk, teamed with colourful berries, or an apple.
If I have to eat something from a petrol station... I opt for a serving of low-fat yogurt, or laban, to address hunger cravings on the go.
Every day I eat... almonds or walnuts, berries and yogurt.
The three things I never eat are... Soda drinks, refined flour bakery products and so called ‘diet-friendly’ foods.
My biggest food sin is... dark chocolate.
The most common nutrition mistake is... avoiding carbohydrates. They are the body’s preferred source of energy and have to be included in moderate levels in your diet, even if you are looking to lose weight. Avoiding them causes the body to burn other substrates, including muscle protein and fat, which could be detrimental in the long run.
The single most damaging thing you can include in your diet is... soda – diet or otherwise – and other caffeinated energy beverages. They have no nutritional benefits and usually provide hidden empty calories.
The single most undervalued food that people should eat more of is... the humble egg. High in bio-available protein, very versatile and rich in several micronutrients, people should try to include more eggs in their diet. People with high cholesterol levels can include one whole egg for every two egg whites to keep cholesterol levels in check and benefit from eggs’ nutrition.
When it comes to organic... organic foods are known 
to have higher levels of micronutrients and are definitely great to include in the diet.
My nutrition motto is... make each meal count!



Marta Vega Maesa, head dietician at Naturhouse, Emaar Gold and Diamond Park (04 379 0050), says fast food is top of her blacklist.

I start my day with... a piece of fruit or berries, a dairy product, a cup of tea and a slice of granary bread with olive oil and fresh tomato.
For lunch I like... a salad with a big variety of vegetables and chicken or prawns. I may put some fruit in it and I’ll dress it with balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
For dinner, I usually have... vegetable soup, or vegetable purée with fish, or eggs – for example, a vegetable omelette. I usually finish with fruit.
When I am in a rush in the mornings... I’ll have muesli 
and low-fat milk or low-fat yogurt.
If I had to buy lunch from a petrol station... I’d choose 
a healthy sandwich. For a treat, I’d opt for a sorbet.
Every day, I eat... fruit, vegetables and walnuts. I eat fish, eggs and chicken at least once a week.
I never eat... hamburgers or lard.
My biggest food sins are... liquorice and dates.
The most common nutritional mistake I see clients making is... leaving more than four hours between meals.
The most damaging foods a person can include in their diet are... soda drinks and fast food.
My nutrition motto 
is... if you take care of your 
body, your body will take care of you.
I believe that... healthy eating is a lifestyle, not a punishment. Everyone should be aware of the benefit of a equilibrated diet and some exercise. 



Kay Vosloo is a colon hydrotherapist, nutritionist and naturopathic wellness therapist at Talise Wellness Polyclinic, Madinat Jumeirah (04 366 6810), with a soft spot for soft scoop.

For breakfast I eat... either poached organic eggs on rye toast or a big bowl of strawberries topped with plain Greek yogurt, pumpkin seeds and chia seeds, drizzled with Manuka honey. I can’t leave the house without a big breakfast.
My favourite lunch is... sushi or a mixed salad with avocado and quinoa, barley or lentils.
My ideal dinner would be... steamed or barbecued fish with grilled or steamed vegetables or salad.
When I’m in a rush in the mornings, I’ll quickly grab... granola or muesli with coconut milk, or a banana smoothie.
If I have to buy something to eat from a petrol station... it’s normally an ice cream.
Every week I eat... avocado, salad greens and berries.
I never eat... junk food, processed foods or pork. And 
I can’t stand capers!
My biggest food sin is... ice cream.
The most common nutrition mistakes are... skipping meals (especially breakfast), eating too quickly without chewing properly, eating on the go, eating big meals late at night and eating the same meals on a day-to-day basis.
The single most damaging thing a person can include in their diet is... sugar.
The most undervalued food everyone should eat more of is... avocado.
When it comes to organic... I think it’s the best choice, but very expensive. I buy organic eggs and meat. And if 
fruit or veggies have soft skin, it will always be organic. 
But I don’t mind non-organic fruits and vegetables with 
a hardened skin or shell.
When it comes to diets... I’m very against celeb diets, or low-fat, carb-free diets. But if someone needs direction and guidance, I advise either the paleo or vegan way of eating – depending on their goals and lifestyle.
Concerning caffeine... I drink coffee but never on an empty stomach. About 30 minutes after my breakfast, I’ll have either an espresso or a double macchiato, but never more than one per day.
My nutrition motto is... eat breakfast like a king, lunch 
like a prince and dinner like a pauper.
My golden tip is... detox your body at least once a year.


Stephanie Karl, nutritionist at JTS Medical Centre, Jumeirah (04 379 9954), finds a way to eat healthily – even when she is pressed for time.

My ideal breakfast is... two poached eggs with a small serving of smoked salmon, a large cup of tea and an espresso. Alternatively, two large spoons of Marmum skimmed plain yogurt with three chopped walnuts, pomegranate seeds or half an apple – it’s delicious!
My favourite lunch is... the best and most varied salad 
I can make or buy with chicken or tuna, feta cheese and a little dressing. If I am at home, I will always have a spoonful 
of hummus with it.
For dinner... I usually have a slightly larger portion of protein than I have at lunch, such as salmon, tuna or chicken, and another salad. I make a platter of fruit for after the meal – it’s a great way to include fruit in the children’s day.
If I am in a rush in the morning... I take a piece of fruit and coffee in the car. I keep disposable cups with lids especially for this.
In my desk drawer... I always have a container of walnuts and dried fruit, a can of vegetable and lentil soup and a can 
of Rio Mare Salatuna Mexican bean salad.
If I have to eat something from a petrol station... 
I choose a drink and a salad, if they have one. But I keep Rio Mare Salatuna on hand for these emergency moments, especially if we are travelling.
Every day I eat... eggs, apples and salad.
Every week I eat... salmon, walnuts and red meat.
I never eat... bread, pasta or sugar.
My biggest food sin... is fries with parmesan and truffle oil.
The most common nutrition error is... the frequency and quantity of starches and sugars that people eat, which trigger an insulin response in the body.
The second most common mistake is... that people have become fat-phobic and avoid saturated fats from milk, butter, cheese, eggs and coconut, because of the calorie density. But these foods keep you full and do not trigger an insulin response, which is the fat storage hormone. However, do not mix them with a starch or sugar that has an insulin response, as it will then drive the fat into storage.
The third most common mistake is... to shift from saturated fats to plant oils – such as soy, sunflower, safflower and corn oil – which are pro-inflammatory. The best oils are nut, olive, avocado, bran, flaxseed, coconut and maybe a little canola oil. Another issue is that many people skip breakfast, which tends to lead to a poor lunch choice. This is often due to eating late and waking up already full.
The single most damaging food is... refined processed foods.
The single most undervalued food is... eggs.
My nutrition motto is... eat fresh, simple and unprocessed foods regularly and keep treat foods for special occasions.
I believe that... nutrition is not just about food, but about your personal biochemistry. Understanding the complex metabolic pathways and recognising the symptoms individuals are faced with provides many of the answers. Symptoms such as overeating, fatigue, poor sleep, depression, acidity, hormone imbalances, digestive issues, eating disorders, or learning and memory problems need to be scrutinised for the underlying cause. Essentially, the body will always try to fix itself, but sometimes it is overburdened.



Chandy George, Ayurvedic lifestyle consultant 
at Balance Wellbeing 360 (04 384 7010/7011), 
says timing is key.

For breakfast, I like... some carbs. So I would pick idily, dosa or a bowl of cooked channa [chickpeas] and red kidney beans.
My ideal lunch is... rice with vegetable or chicken curry, with salads on the side.
For dinner, I usually have... chapati with any vegetable curry or home-made non-vegetarian soup. I don’t eat salad in the evening.
When I am in a rush in the morning... I have a large glass of fresh juice with sugar, or two slices of bread with honey.
If I have to eat something from a petrol station... at breakfast time, I’d choose a vegetarian wrap or sandwich with juice. And at lunchtime, a non-vegetarian sandwich or cheese sandwich, with juice.
Every day I eat... fish, rice, chapati.
I never eat... sushi. I eat almost all other foods.
The most common nutritional mistakes I see clients making are... not having food at the right time; mixing 
foods that are not advisable to have together; and not knowing the impact of the food you’ve had – for example, if a diabetic person eats rice or potatoes.
The single most dangerous food you can include in your diet is... saturated fat.
As for diets, I believe that... there is no need to follow strict diets. You should simply know your body type and tailor your eating habits to it.
My nutrition motto is... fewer carbs and proteins, more natural vitamins and minerals.

By Louisa Wilkins, Editor

By Louisa Wilkins, Editor