The Pursuit of My Niche

If you had to come up with something you share in common with every single human being on this planet, it might be challenging, right? Things that may come to mind is that everyone sleeps, breathes, and moves. However, let’s get even deeper. What allows people to sleep, breathe, and move? Energy. The body needs energy to function every day, which I’m sure you knew, but do you know how each macromolecule plays a role in your organ system? If not, that’s okay. For many people, food is a means for survival; for me, it is a passion. Even though nutrition plays a vital role in the existence of every human, not all people will be interested in learning about it or studying the nitty gritty to correct their health. In order to help others with the knowledge I am passionate about, I am currently working on becoming a certified nutrition coach through NASM. To achieve this goal, I spend a couple hours a week studying their interactive 24 chapter book, taking tests, reviewing study materials, and putting my education first. I’m so serious about it, I’m becoming a regular at the library… as an 18 year old… by choice. After achieving this first goal of obtaining my certification, I will then explore how to help people who might not have access to food that is associated with disease prevention and health promotion. This niche of dietetics requires critical thinking and networking, which I will learn about through volunteering with Second Harvest. This experience will allow me to get hands on with the challenges underprivileged individuals suffer from every day in hopes of making even small changes through education and resource management. I will be volunteering at distribution centers, food drives, and food service centers with Second Harvest for a couple of months over this next year. Planning my year so that my education comes first will allow me to bring new perspectives and ideas to the table when volunteering, so that I can make the biggest impact possible. Finally, my last big goal to tackle this year will be working as an intern under a registered dietician. Having the knowledge about what foods should be prioritized in a balanced diet and how to financially afford healthy eating is one thing, but diving into the psyche of a patient is another. You can tell people all day what to eat and how to afford it on any budget, but actually convincing, supporting, and holding them accountable is another. Being a dietician is an art form because it is literally asking a person to completely change their routine that they have had their entire life and then finding a way to actually make it feasible. With the education from my NASM certification, my experience with Second Harvest, and my internship under a dietician, I will come out of this gap year a transformed person with an entirely new perspective on food, which I couldn’t be more excited about.

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