1. Tell us a bit about yourself?
I’m a native of Ghana, West Africa where I treasure my culture from fashion, to traditional events, and most of all… the food (obvious, right?). I am a new dietitian currently building on my clinical nutrition background in a rehabilitation and nursing center, while doing many things on the side including freelance writing, food photography, and working with the media. My path towards becoming an RD started at the young age of 15 and I have never turned back since, it was my calling and I absolutely love it! Currently building my website which launches this Summer, my focus is to help women truly understand the powerful relationship between what they eat and how their body looks, feels, and functions to help them make more conscious, wiser choices which in turn will allow them to live a healthier, happier and purpose filled life. (Who run the world? GIRLS!) I am still finding my niche in the dietetics world, but in the meantime I am soaking it all in and enjoying every moment.
2. What’s your favorite part about being a dietitian?
I am a people person. I love working with people from all walks of life. I learn something new from my patients every day and I love the opportunity I get to connect with them. It’s pretty amazing to witness the powerful role that good nutrition plays in the overall health and wellbeing of my patients. Also, I love that I can combine my love for science, food, health, and communications! It’s crazy.. in a good way.
3. Describe what your typical week looks like?
When I am not spending time with my precious baby niece (although I wish this was all the time) I am always looking to stay productive. There’s never a dull moment in my world and I will never let it happen- HA! Right now, I spend my time during the weekdays in a rehab and nursing center making sure my patients’ are meeting their nutritional needs as well as improving upon my clinical nutrition skills. Outside of my clinical life, I spend time managing the social media outlets for the DC affiliate of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics where I currently serve as the Social Media Coordinator. Evenings and weekends usually include lots of cooking, brainstorming ideas for my next TV segment, writing TV segment scripts, building my website, contributing my thoughts to different media outlets, freelance writing, food photography, and reading up on the latest nutrition research. I am constantly searching for new opportunities all around me. The work is never done, and there is so much to learn! It’s great.
4. How do you find balance between work & personal?
Thank goodness for big calendars and planners which help me to prioritize better and to stay organized! I am an early bird, even on the weekends, there’s only so many hours a day to accomplish everything I have planned. Spending time with God is how I begin my mornings. Doing this helps me get through each day. I always make time for shopping, cooking and journaling. These three things help me to stay calm, and cool. Oh, and I just got a gym membership, so I am looking forward to getting a routine going. Would love a gym partner! Any takers?!
5. What are 3 foods you can’t live without?
Avocados (avocados.are.life.), salmon, and everything in the Ghanaian cuisine (it’s impossible to narrow it down, ahh!)
Photo Credit: Hinga Wuya
Thank you so much for contributing to our Dietitian Spotlight, Valerie! You can find Valerie on Instagram + Twitter + Pinterest @ValerieAgyeman. Look out for her website launch in Summer 2017.