Hi there! I am ..Shaistha Zaheeruddin, MS., RD.
I am a registered dietitian and the founder Modest Nutrition and author of this blog. Welcome to this page, let me tell you a little about me and how I can serve you.
I serve people who:
- Are struggling to make sense of what is true and what is not from the clutter of mixed & contradicting information out there about health, food & diet
- Have tried multiple “diets” and pills with some visible results but never resulted in a SATISFACTORY long term result
- Desperately want to manage or treat their health conditions through natural ways before beginning a medical/drug treatment program
- Know the what’s & how’s to eat and live healthy but struggle to get started or develop the discipline to adapt it into their family or hectic lifestyles
I help them by:
- Debunking information to give only trusted and evidence-based health & nutrition FACTS that is relevant to their own unique needs.
- Providing A Non-Diet approach. I walk them through a step-by-step simpler but realistic guide to feeling their best Inside and Out, for long-term!
- Resolving their health complications while working together with their healthcare team to provide the best medical nutrition therapy available.
- Giving them the tools to seamlessly integrate healthy living practices within their families and lifestyles while becoming their ongoing coach and accountability partner to ensure success.
Why You Can Trust Me…
- I am a Registered Dietitian, accredited both in the United States and Canada (through Commission on Dietetic Registration and College of Dietitians of Ontario)
- Some of my other titles are Lifestyle Interventionist, Nutritionist and Health Coach
- I did my Master’s in Nutrition & Food Science from Michigan, USA and have since more than 8 years of experience in the field of Nutrition
- I was a Research Scientist for 5 years testing the effects of Nutrients in foods (Phytochemicals) in the treatment and prevention of Cancer
- I was a Graduate Teaching Assistant at Wayne State University for more 2 years teaching nutrition principles to Undergraduate Nutrition and Dietetic students.
- I currently meet individuals, families and groups (virtually or in the community) on a regular basis counselling them on Nutrition and Lifestyle approaches to manage their health, weight and medical conditions
- I consult for leading industries, healthcare providers like doctors and surgeons, pharmacies and nursing/adult-care homes staff and patients on several health topics through Lunch & Learns, Wellness Fairs or Seminars. Some of my clients are:
- ECD School for the Deaf, Milton, ON
- CKSS School – for special needs high school students
- Mountain View Residence
- Summit Housing & Outreach Program
- DynamiX Corporate Fitness & Wellness
- Rexall Pharmacy
- ICCM- Milton
- Canadian Diabetes Association
- Live Well Marketing
- Creative Sampling Solutions
- Mountain View Residence
- Intercultural Meals
- Muslim Womenpreneur
- Milton Business Show
- Town of Oakville
- I’ve been expert consultant for networks like:
- The Examiner
- Huffington Post Canada
- Organic Authority
- All Parenting
- Low Purine Diets
- Ramussen College
My Extended Portfolio can be viewed on LinkedIn click here
And when I am not meeting clients or giving presentations, or developing programs for the community, I can be found:
- Learning about ancient/traditional or grandma’s herbal remedies using kitchen ingredients for beauty, health and green living (eg. lemon for shiny hair!)
- Doing Crafts, like crochet projects, jewelry designing, or painting
- Gardening & harvesting fruits and vegetables in my backyard (and sharing them with my neighbours)
- Swimming at the ‘Ladies only’ Community Pool
- Travelling for conferences or to meet family/friends oversees or in USA
Get FREE advice to keep you motivated and help you make strategic healthy eating goals on your own!
If you are curious to know more, here are a few facts you didn’t know about me that led me here:
- When someone asks me where I am from – I say I am “global” because I was born in Kuwait, grew up in Egypt, have roots in India, studied in the USA, reside in Canada and have traveled to 20 different countries and have friends in 5 different continents – & I know foods from all these cultures. Especially Middle Eastern & South Asian cuisines.
- I grew up living with the worst picky eater in the world (who ate only cucumbers for breakfast, lunch and dinner) and have cousins dealing with similar picky eaters – giving me a unique perspective on both the child’s and the parents’ struggle with feeding.
- As a teenager, like any other teen, I was swept up with the peer-pressure of dieting and weight loss, which only resulted in negative impact on my health. Including hair loss, height stunt and PCOS. Over the years in my practice with clients, I learned how – the weight stigma and the way parents react with girls as they are struggling with weight – impacts self-esteem and the lifelong relationships of people to food. It is, in many cases, the reaction of parents that can make or break the future of your weight cycles (and obesity). This is why I counsel both parents and children when it comes to the sensitive issue of weight, PCOS, picky eating and eating disorders.
- The reason I got into nutrition was because I had lost my sister to cancer as a child, this always sparked my interest in finding a cure for cancer, using foods – which is how I stumbled into my first job as a cancer research scientist. I worked with cancer tissues and animals to learn how spices like turmeric (and later other foods like mangosteen, black seed, grapeseed and other foods) can treat and/or prevent cancer.
- Other than this, I was lucky enough to grow up seeing my father – who was diagnosed with diabetes in his late 20’s – eat healthy without the guidance of a doctor or dietitian. He is in his 60’s now and still has his blood sugar in check with no major complications (Thank God). This is from his great discipline with choosing the right foods, self-monitoring his blood sugars and his positive mindset. I have seen in my family many who did not control their diabetes well and developed complications like kidney disease (with dialysis or kidney transplant), high blood pressures, heart attacks, and strokes. Being this close to these diseases from early on and not knowing until I completed my Master’s in Nutrition how all these diseases were connected to one another (each leading and worsening the other condition) I was still hungry to know how to treat it. So when the opportunity came along for me to get out of the lab, I jumped at the chance to joining the 2 year dietetic program and then completed my 2 year internships at the St John’s Providence hospital, Diabetes clinics and other health facilities and finally became a dietitian. I currently work with the Canadian Diabetes Association to spread my knowledge about managing diabetes to community groups and at wellness events.
- Most of my group consultations have been to special needs children and adults with mental disabilities – I feel they resonate well with me and I resonate with them best!
- My passion lies with helping young girls and women with PCOS lead guilt-free and stress-free lives. I can relate with their deep struggles and have the unique ability to help them accomplish their goals, whether it is to reduce their symptoms, help in weight loss/maintenance, prevent complications or help them become pregnant.
What makes me unique in my approach is…
- My culturally diverse knowledge of food and food practices around the world
- My personal experiences & connections with the struggles of PCOS, Picky Eaters, Diabetes, Cancer and Special Needs.
- With the knowledge of nutrients and medical nutrition therapy that I have gained over my years in the field and lab, I am passionate about helping people overcoming their struggles in a simplified, realistic & tailored approach that has life-long results. I don’t believe in diets because they don’t work.
We can work well together if you also believe in using the natural approach to healthy living, are not looking for a short-term solution to your health problems and appreciate a step-wise process for lifelong success and prevention.
Meet My Amazing Team:
Ummay Aiman is a third year nutrition student, enrolled in the Nutrition and Food (BASc) program at Ryerson university. Ummay is passionate about educating and empowering people to take control of their health. She volunteers at modest nutrition, to enhance her education, and get real life experience within the dietetic field . She enjoys analyzing recipes, creating informative and fun blog posts for the modest nutrition website, and helping out with workshops and events.
Ummay plans on becoming a registered dietitian, in order to achieve her goal of helping people become healthier and happier by improving their lifestyles.
Najiha Faraz has done her Masters in Human Development from the College of Home Economics Karachi, Pakistan. Her research thesis was on “Factors Associated with Academic Achievement of Adolescent Boys” (2006). She has worked with the children with special needs and as a dietitian in Health Care Hospital and DHA Health Center in Karachi, Pakistan.
Currently, she is volunteering with Modest Nutrition to analyze and makeover recipes and meal plans, and write nutrition blogs. Najiha is passionate about promoting healthy eating habits and plans to pursue further education in the field of nutrition.
Saima Khan is a third year student at the University of Guelph, enrolled in the Applied Human Program. She intends on becoming a registered dietitian in the future and is currently volunteering at the Modest Nutrition clinic where she is gaining hands on experience with Shaistha, the registered dietitian.
She absolutely loves working with her because she finds it very motivating and inspiring. Through her time working at Modest Nutrition, she was able to see how registered dietitians work and deal with clients. Her next goal is to do internship in order to qualify for writing her dietetic exam.