Heading down to NYC on Friday afternoon I didn’t know just how much of the healthy foodie in me would get to come out and play.

Amazingly over the weekend I got to attend the green festival  which allowed me to be exposed to a range of organic and plant based products that I otherwise wouldn’t have known about or have tried.

I always do find it interesting when you have sales people attempting to play nutritionist and spin off their taught lines on the health benefits, which sometimes don’t quite add up! …I only put one person back in his place, but I did it with a smile on my face and didn’t appear to make any enemies (we just had a laugh about it!).

Given the focus was on sustainability, there was  a lot promotion of vegetable based products and promotion of vegan living..I have found that before coming to the USA I was beginning to go down the path of focusing on more whole foods, however I feel after being here and seeing so many of the poorly manufactured foods, I can respect even more so the reason people are shifting towards going back to the unpackaged, unprocessed, food preferences.

There were many plant or grain based products that were being promoted as great sources of omega 3, protein and even calcium. It was nice to see a few familiar products that I recognised from the Australian shelves..but all in all it just showed me even more so, how little variety we have back at home compared to over here (which is a tribute to the US food system!).

I also managed to spend some time at the Chelsea Food Market. For anyone that knows me, I love going to the market on a Sunday and buying my fresh ingredients to whip up for the week ahead, so to see what was on offer at this gorgeous indoor market was almost like seeing a kid in a candy store! The market was packed and I could see why. There were amazing breads, cakes, Italian food, fresh seafood, real coffee (who would believe it!), and the list could go on. I was a happy and content girl.

I also managed to track down a natural cooking school that I had looked into before departing for the USA. I think my interest has been sparked once again and it looks like in a couple of weeks when I finish my studies here, a little bit of nutrition knowledge and culinary skill development may just have to take place!

After a weekend of enjoying the fresh locally produced whole foods I thought it was only fair to get myself balanced again and go meet with a senior supermarket registered dietitian from PriceChopper, one of the bigger supermarket chains in the north western part of the States. I had a wonderful time learning about the nutritional programs that are offered throughout the stores and by many retailers in the USA (which I hope to one day implement in Australia if Coles or Woolworths will get me on board!).

I found the labelling programs phenomenal and very useful for consumers. Being a very practical dietitian, I see this as an extremely important area, and given the influence the supermarket chains have on what products go into customers trolleys and home onto their plates, it is really a credit to the chains that have implemented such systems and have a number of dietitians on board.

So as you can see, the healthy foodie in me appears to be coming out just a little bit at the moment (by a little, I mean a lot!)…I think looking at it objectively, it was bound to be engrained in my personality: jewish and a dietitian…it’s kind of like food and nutrition stamped on ones forehead! Being in New York, I can see I am definitely not the only one that has turned out this way…that is at least slightly comforting 🙂

Now I should study..exams are in a week, the semester is almost over, and then the next chapter of this adventure will begin.

As of this morning, apparently I am jetting down to Florida for a week as soon as I finish in May for some more adventures and time in the sun..I promise to continue to share my stories for those of you that have asked if you can live vicariously through me this year 🙂

For now,

The travelling dietitian x

About The Author

Kara Landau aka "Travelling Dietitian" is an Australian Accredited Practicing Dietitian based in New York City. She is a world explorer, healthy foodie, social butterfly, and barre class lover. When she isn't trying new cuisines, researching new product innovations in the health food space, or speaking to the media on behalf of her food industry clients, she can be found quietly conjuring up her next idea in how to make this world a healthier and better place.

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