As a dietitian, one question I get a lot is, “What do you eat?” There are quite a few misconceptions about how dietitians eat. Many people are surprised when they learn that I have a bit of a sweet tooth and indulge in the occasional glass of wine! I’m a dietitian, but I’m a human first!
Consider this evidence: My food journal, which I shared in an article on Stay tuned over the next couple of days to hear about how other MNT dietitians eat!
Jennifer McDaniel, RDN based in Clayton, MO
She satisfies her sweet tooth every day, drinks wine on the weekends and isn’t fazed by unfamiliar ingredients in her CSA bag.
Day 1 (Thursday)
Breakfast – 6:30 a.m.
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt with 1/2 cup sliced strawberries and 1/4 cup dried-fig granola; 1 piece of sprouted whole wheat raisin toast with 1 Tbsp. almond butter; 1 cup of coffee with 2 Tbsp. half-and-half and 1 tsp. honey topped with 2 Tbsp. light whipped topping. “I believe in big breakfasts—they help me manage hunger throughout the day. I add whipped topping to my coffee because life is too short not to enjoy mini treats.”
Snack – 10:15 a.m.
1 ounce light Jarlsberg cheese and 3 dried apricots.
Lunch – 12:45 p.m.
Falafel salad—6 cups arugula, 2 small homemade baked falafel burgers, 2 Tbsp. feta cheese, 1/2 cucumber, sliced, 3 Tbsp. homemade tahini sauce.; 1 dark-chocolate square and a green tea with candied ginger. “I budget in 100 calories of dark chocolate every day.”
Snack – 4:30 p.m.
1/2 cup pistachios in the shell and 2 dried apricots.
Dinner – 6 p.m.
4 cups ramen soup with homemade tofu, mushrooms and broccoli; 1 square of dark chocolate; 1 piece of candied ginger. “I’d never made ramen before but we just got the noodles in our CSA bag.”
Day 2 (Friday)
Highlights of the day: A go-to green smoothie for breakfast, homemade Thai carrot soup for lunch and an IPA with dinner (more ramen soup).
Day 3 (Saturday)
Breakfast – 6:30 a.m.
2 scrambled eggs with light, shredded cheddar cheese; 1/4 avocado; 1/4 cup salsa; 1 piece of sprouted whole-wheat raisin toast with 1 Tbsp. almond butter; usual morning coffee.
Snack – 10 a.m.
oat-and-date protein bites; “These are a family-wide favorite snack. They request them over things like cheese crackers or cookies.”
Lunch – 11:30 a.m.
4 cups ramen soup; 1 carrot; 1 apple.
Snack – 2 p.m.
1/3 cup pistachios in shell; 1 cup homemade banana ice cream. “I like to add 1 Tbsp. of unsweetened cocoa powder to mine for some chocolate satisfaction.”
Snack – 4 p.m.
2 carrots; bites of kids’ mini-wraps. “I try not to do this, but I can’t lie about the fact that I eat off my kid’s plates here and there.”
Dinner – 7:30 p.m.
1 ounce smoked trout with Greek yogurt–and–dill dip; 3 ounces of salmon; 1 piece of corn on the cobb; 10 asparagus spears; 1/2 cup homemade rhubarb crisp with 1/2 cup vanilla ice cream; 1 glass of a buttery Chardonnay. “I’d been dying to try a rhubarb dessert recipe. Making your own allows you to control the amount of sugar and fat and enjoy the natural sweetness of the produce.”
Day 4 (Sunday)
Breakfast – 7 a.m.
3 3-inch lemon cottage cheese pancakes; 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt; 1/2 piece of soy sausage; 2 strawberries; 1 tsp. honey; usual coffee. “I had some leftover cottage cheese that was a couple of days from being thrown away, so I used it up. It’s a good way to pack in a little morning protein.”
Snack – 10 a.m.
3-inch baked falafel.
Lunch – 12 p.m.
1/2 cup vegetarian refried beans and 1/4 cup ground chicken breast burrito with 1/8 cup light cheese, 1/2 cup salsa and 1/4 avocado; 1 apple; 1 square of dark chocolate; green tea. “I always keep whole grain tortillas, salsa and vegetarian refried beans on hand. Sometimes lard is added to refried beans, so you need to check the label if you’re a vegetarian or try to eat vegetarian sometimes.”
Snack – 3 p.m.
2 cups watermelon; 1 baked falafel with 1 Tbsp. tahini sauce.
Dinner – 7 p.m.
Out to restaurant for date night—1 cup of mushroom masala; 2 ounces of white bread; 4 cups arugula and spinach salad with goat cheese; 2 cups roasted cauliflower with red sauce; 1 glass of white wine; 1 square of dark chocolate.
Day 5 (Monday)
Highlights of the day: After a shrimp salad lunch left her hungry, McDaniel reached for a bigger-than-usual snack of 1 cup of watermelon, 1 piece of sprouted whole wheat raisin toast with 1 Tbsp. peanut butter, and 1/2 whole-grain tortilla with 3 Tbsp. hummus to tide her over until dinner, which was huevos rancheros with arugula salad (2 eggs, 1/2 cup refried beans, 4 cups arugula, 1/3 cup salsa, 1/8 cup shredded cheese, 1/8 avocado; 1 apple; plus 1 square of dark chocolate).
Day 6 (Tuesday)
Highlights of the day: Berry-filled Greek yogurt for breakfast, a slice of takeout cornmeal-crust pizza topped with zucchini, kalamata olives, mozzarella cheese, onions, basil and lots of arugula for lunch, plus more huevos rancheros for dinner. And a square of dark chocolate, of course.
Day 7 (Wednesday)
Breakfast – 6:30 a.m.
Green smoothie with 1/4 cup granola on top; usual coffee.
Lunch – 12 p.m.
1 apple, 1 square of dark chocolate, green tea and 4 cups arugula-pistachio pesto salad—4 cups arugula, 1/2 cup cooked pasta, 1/2 cup chickpeas, 2 Tbsp. arugula-pesto, 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, 1/3 cup tiny mozzarella balls.
Snack – 3 p.m.
1/3 cup mixed nuts.
Dinner – 6 p.m.
2 cups sautéed yellow squash with 1/3 cup leftover ground Mexican chicken; 2 cups of the lunch salad; 2 cups of red tea.

So what do dietitians eat? Pretty wholesome, nourishing foods for the most part. But certainly our fair share of fun foods! Next up is Kim Yawitz, RD, LD, our social media manager and specialist in sports and family nutrition.
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