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  • Writer's pictureAlexis Dawn Salima Gonzalez

Hi, I'm Alexis!

Updated: Jul 28, 2023

. . . the newest dietitian at Food Wonderful. I am a Health at Every Size® aligned Registered Dietitian (RD) with experience working alongside clients recovering from eating disorders and substance abuse. I am so glad you’re here!

As a child I was taught by the world that I was responsible for the way people treated me because I was responsible for the size and shape of my body. I had to look a certain way if I wanted to be treated with respect. That’s a lot of responsibility for a kid, huh? I was lucky enough to have parents that didn’t encourage that line of thinking but my peers, MTV, and TigerBeat Magazine had way more influence on my body image than my parents.

Like many others who are forced to value beauty above all else, at some point I no longer wanted to be connected to my body because it didn’t “fit.” It may have come from a specific photo of an actress, a Tumblr post, or when a doctor scared me into wanting to lose weight so I didn’t “die too young”. In any case, this disconnect disrupted my relationship with food.

A strenuous relationship with food and body is hard to endure every day. It was hard to endure in elementary school, in high school, and even through my nutrition and dietetic education in college. Stifling cries in the Target dressing room. Calorie counting apps congratulating me for choosing a bare bones salad over a salad with dressing and bacon bits for lunch. Worrying that the next candy bar will make me sick. I no longer enjoyed food because I believed it was the source of my misery.

It took years of chronic dieting, unsatisfying physical activity, weight cycling, and all the mood and energy dysregulation that comes with dieting to finally realize that I was freaking exhausted. For so long I thought I was taking care of myself but, if I was, then why was I so miserable?

In my dietetic internship I learned about Health at Every Size® and instantly felt.. relief? Calmness? Like, my purpose in the world is actually not to look a certain way for others? It wasn’t my fault that the world might treat me differently based on my body. It wasn’t a fault that my body looked the way it did. It was nice to know that food nor my body weren’t my enemies anymore. Of course, this doesn’t change the fact that the world treats people differently according to their body size. This also doesn’t change the fact that the world is built for people in specific bodies. However, people treating me differently was not a moral failure on my part anymore. My body isn’t wrong. It just is. And it deserves to just be.

After learning that food isn’t the enemy and neither is my body, I began learning and applying intuitive eating skills. It takes time. It’s not fair to expect two decades of diet mentality to just disappear. Intuitive eating is challenging until it isn’t. Eating intuitively doesn’t mean every meal will be perfectly balanced or I will never feel Thanksgiving Full again. Intuitive eating, to me, means reconnecting with my body in order for it to trust that I will nourish it when it needs food and to end a meal before getting it sick.

I know first hand that the journey of self-care and reconnection is difficult to navigate alone. That’s why I’m glad you’re here. I’d love to offer nutrition expertise and tons of compassion in order to support you so it’s not so overwhelming.

I’d describe my nutrition counseling as compassionate and ambitious. I’m literally your biggest fan. Being born in southern California and raised in Chicago lends me a pretty laid back approach to counseling and a lot of pride in the work that we’ll do. My on-site coworkers are two cats named Pepper and Basil which you will most likely see on video from time to time. When I’m not in session I’m likely listening to podcasts or singing while cooking. I practice joyful movement by cycling, walking, and soft stretching in the evenings. A solid horror movie will put me at ease for the night and I’ll sleep like a baby.

Again, I believe a wholesome relationship with food is nourishing to body and soul. I encourage you to meet with me if you want to find joy in food again just like I did. It’s time for your body to just be. No guilt. No shame.

Thanks for reading!

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