MISSION: I am committed to helping people embrace and develop new relationships with food, whether that means incorporating a healthier way of eating into your normal routine, establishing better at-home meal-planning skills, or managing a chronic condition through food modifications.
I gauge my success on my clients’ progress and my philosophy is based heavily on one of the greatest coaches of all time John Wooden’s quote: “If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?” The strategy for success is how well prepared you are to get from the first step to the last. I acknowledge and appreciate that everybody is different. There is no one diet, fitness regimen, daily routine, or productivity program that suits everyone. I help my clients integrate new habits and achieve their goals in a realistic and sustainable way.
BIO: When I was about eleven years old, I would plunk myself down in front of the television and, while my classmates were home watching after-school cartoons or soap operas, I’d immerse myself in cooking programs like Pasquale’s Cucina Espressa, Great Chefs of the World and repeats of The Galloping Gourmet (this is back when we only had four channels) and diligently learn about food.
For thirty-plus years, I haven’t stopped learning; but, as most people’s stories tend to go, my professional career shot off in a different direction soon after I graduated college.
After grueling bouts of indecision over whether or not I wanted to go to culinary school and run a restaurant the rest of my life, I ended up majoring in communication instead and had the great fortune of acquiring some pretty outstanding interpersonal and organizational skills. For many years, I put those skills to use as a meeting/event planner and project manager for international companies, independently owned small businesses, and local charities alike.
I became the consummate go-to person and was awesome at everything I did—giving over and above at every job—but I felt like crap, always.
In 2009, I started coming to terms with the illnesses and issues I had been plagued by for the better part of two decades: severe gastrointestinal problems, sinus infections, bipolar disorder, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, and a raging nicotine habit. I was a social butterfly, but never had the energy to do much. I was getting upset at myself and impatient with others and then I read something by Ann Wigmore, one of the original holistic health practitioners of the early 1900s, which said, “The food you eat can either be the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.” At the time, I wasn’t sure what was poisoning me worse—the food or the nicotine—but I decided to become the Project Manager of My Life and figure out how to get healthy again.
After three years of eliminating and adding certain foods to my diet, poring over tons of food- and health-related books, articles, and documentary movies, eventually, my cholesterol and blood pressure improved, I quit smoking, and I was living without pharmaceuticals for the first time in nearly twelve years. My other ailments went away and my energy came back, as did my memory—I remembered I loved food and learning about food and teaching people about food. So, at the tender age of forty-four, I decided to quit my full-time job to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) and formally pursue a Master of Science in nutrition.
My takeaway is this: food is but one factor in leading a healthful lifestyle; but, when I was able to fix my food and nutrition, I was able to focus on changing the other stressful, non-food aspects of my life. I believe that, no matter your upbringing or past experience, there is so much more to learn from every person you meet, every situation you encounter…and yourself. There is always an opportunity to be a better, healthier person.
Dina lives in a teeny, tiny apartment in New York City with her six-foot-tall husfriend of fifteen years and their cat, Tweek.
Purchased credentials, mad skills, and street smarts
- Commission on Dietetic Registration, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), September 2016
- MS, Nutrition, CUNY-Herbert H. Lehman College, NYC, May 2018
- School of Coaching Mastery
- Bronze member: International Association of Professional Life Coaches (IAPLC)
- Member: Retail Dietitians Business Alliance (RDBA)
- Member: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; Greater New York Dietetic Association (GNYDA); New York State Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (NYSAND); Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine DPG; Nutrition Entrepreneurs DPG
- ServSafe® Manager, National Restaurant Association, Lic #11607088, 2014
- Distinguished Service Award, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, 2010
- “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Managers®,” FranklinCovey, 2010
- “Project Management: Skills for Success,” Learning Tree International, NYC, 2008
- “Reinvent Yourself,” Pamela Mitchell/Reinvention Institute via MediaBistro, NYC, 2005
- “Event Planning and Professional Catering,” The New School, NYC,
- “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People®,” FranklinCovey, 1993
- BA, Communication, William Paterson University, NJ, 1993