Image credit: Colleen Sheehan
Keri Glassman is a crusader for conscious living and mindful eating. Creator of Nutritious Life, Keri brings a customized, whole-person approach to living beyond fad diets and exercise trends. This month Keri inspires us with her journey to holistic living, feeling empowered, and the “eight pillars” of a nutritious life. This conversation has been condensed and edited.
Parvati Magazine: As a college athlete, you struggled with the disconnect between your body’s needs and what society seemed to consider the “ideal” female form.
Keri Glassman: It was more of a disconnect between the part of me that said “you are a healthy athlete, you should ‘look’ fit”, and what I believed fit to look like. I knew I was naturally of average weight and I was an athlete and exercising rigorously, yet it seemed increasingly difficult to maintain what I believed to be a healthy weight.
Parvati Magazine: With Nutritious Life, you offer an approach with eight pillars, of which only two are about what we put in our mouths. What inspired you to develop this more holistic approach?
Keri Glassman: I always had a passion for nutrition—even if I didn’t realize it. My friend Amy reminds me that I used to say things like “I am craving almonds, my body must need vitamin E” when I was as young as 12! When I realized that being a nutritionist was an actual career choice, I had that “This is what I am meant to do!” moment.
Studying nutrition combined my love of food with my nerdy interest in science and a desire to be of service. When I began my private practice I knew it wasn’t going to be all about food – calories and exercise etc. Because it’s not all about food. I knew this from my own personal experience and then I had the research to confirm it as I began my nutrition studies. Even going back to college, I knew that when I slept well I was more motivated to eat well and go to the gym. When I went to the gym I was less stressed. When I used to ask clients about their sleep patterns, or about their relationships, they sometimes looked at me like I was crazy. Times have changed and people are faster to accept and embrace what I call the eight pillars of a Nutritious Life. The pillars are all connected on a physiological and behavioral level. When you eat well, you sleep well. When you sleep well, you eat well, you have more energy to work out and when you work out you sleep better etc.The food pillar, Eat Empowered, is all about putting the best, whole real foods into your body and listening to your body.
Parvati Magazine: Tell us about The Nutritious Life Studio! How did this community of wellness educators come together, and what are some of the ways you have seen it make a difference?
Keri Glassman: When I started my practice I created a very specific methodology that made it easy for me to be the best nutritionist I could be, and helpful for the client to be successful. As I hired dietitians over the years, they studied my methodology and became Nutritious Life Certified in order to work in my office. So, no matter which dietitian clients were seeing, they were all getting the same level of care and being taught the same types of healthy habits (unique to their situations and to the personality of the dietitian of course). It was an obvious fit for me to be able to share this philosophy and methodology online for other wellness professionals who were looking for some career direction, community or foundation of nutrition education. If I can help others avoid the mistakes I made over the years, teach them my successes to expedite their own successes, and give them a roadmap to help their own clients reach their goals, then I have truly accomplished my original Nutritious Life mission—to help as many people as possible take their nutrition up as many notches as possible. Score!
We have almost 1,000 Nutritious Life certified alum spanning 25 countries and they are doing all kinds of amazing things to make this world healthier like starting their own online businesses, publishing books, opening private practices, starting healthy food businesses, giving lectures on health topics in their communities, and more.
Parvati Magazine: As more people are feeling empowered to embrace holistic living, wellness practitioners of all kinds, including nutritionists, have greater influence than ever. What are the opportunities you see in the coming years?
Keri Glassman: I think there will continue to be a need for coaches and nutritionists in private and group counseling, opportunities to work with food brands—small and large, more opportunity to write and produce video content for media outlets, more opportunities to partner with small and large corporations to build out further corporate wellness. I also see the travel wellness and health technology sectors growing too.
Parvati Magazine: And finally, what does a “healthier world” look like to you, and how do you hope to further your contribution to this?
Keri Glassman: Calmer, happier, more peaceful. People eating more whole foods, going slower, being kinder and smiling more and stressing less. I am hoping that through Nutritiouslife.com and The Nutritious Life Studio I will be able to spread the message of The 8 Pillars of a Nutritious Life so we can all live a life where we drink up, stress less, love more, eat empowered.
Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, is a renowned celebrity nutritionist, healthy cooking expert, and wellness thought-leader. She is the founder and CEO of Nutritious Life and The Nutritious Life Studio, an online certification that provides unparalleled, forward-thinking education to individuals of various backgrounds looking to establish successful careers in the health and wellness industry.
Image credit: Andrew Werner