Nicole Cruz, MS, RD Nutrition Consultant

Nicole Cruz, MS, RD   Nutrition Consultant Nicole Cruz is a Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Consultant devoted to helping others create a balanced relationship with food.
(2)

Operating as usual

Right off the bat I want to clarify about BMI. There’s nothing wrong with having a higher BMI. However, the point here i...
05/07/2021

Right off the bat I want to clarify about BMI. There’s nothing wrong with having a higher BMI. However, the point here is that when parents try to control the food more, they often push their child’s BMI to be higher than it would have been had they allowed them to naturally regulate their own intake.

With that said, you can see the clear difference in this post about the potential benefits of following the Division of Responsibility in feeding to raise a competent eater, as opposed to enlisting a greater degree of control over your child’s bites of food.

Higher parental control in feeding is associated with what I would consider to be mainly less desirable outcomes. And based on what we know about dieting and restrained eating in general, it makes sense.

Greater parental control leaves children feeling pressured to eat or deprived of what they want.

When children feel deprived they become more preoccupied with food and tend to eat larger portions and eat past fullness. Or they try to restrain themselves and then end up swinging between restrictive practices and ‘overeating’.

And the research further supports that children who are forced to try a bite of food are LESS likely to come back to it later as opposed to children who are given the freedom to explore it and potentially try to like it in their own time.

However, maintaining the Division of Responsibility and providing structure and boundaries while allowing your child autonomy in the feeding process is associated with better health outcomes and better overall diet quality, from variety, as well as better ability to self-regulate and feel in control around food.

I know it can be hard to not limit portions or require bites, but the research clearly shows it’s not beneficial practice in the long run.

For more conversation on these topics with like-minded individuals, join our Free Facebook Group - Joyful Eating for Your Family today at https://www.facebook.com/groups/joyfuleatingforyourfamily

… but it’s healthier. It has fewer calories. It has more fiber…OK!I fully understand some foods do have more nutrients t...
05/06/2021

… but it’s healthier. It has fewer calories. It has more fiber…

OK!

I fully understand some foods do have more nutrients than others. Some do provide carbohydrates, but they also offer more vitamins and fiber. For instance, a donut has carbohydrates and fat with a few other vitamins and minerals, but a fruit smoothie has carbohydrates, higher levels of multiple vitamins and minerals, fiber, and maybe some protein or fat.

But just because one food contains more nutrients than another, doesn’t mean:
You always have to choose the more nutrient dense food
The food that’s less nutrient dense is bad or unhealthy

It’s ok to eat a wide variety of foods. Not everything you choose has to be the most nutrient dense food you can choose.

In fact, focusing too much on loading up on something like fiber, can cause digestive discomfort and even lower nutrient absorption.

And stress overall, contributes to lower nutrient absorption.

The best thing you can do is relax about your food choices, eat foods you enjoy, choose a variety, and listen to your body’s cues.

Sometimes that might mean that you choose the donut and other times you might choose the fruit smoothie. Neither has to be an ALWAYS choice, and neither makes YOU better or worse for choosing it.

And if you need support in making peace with food, schedule your free 15-minute call to see if we're a fit at Calendly.com/NicoleCruzRD/15min

… but it’s healthier. It has fewer calories. It has more fiber…

OK!

I fully understand some foods do have more nutrients than others. Some do provide carbohydrates, but they also offer more vitamins and fiber. For instance, a donut has carbohydrates and fat with a few other vitamins and minerals, but a fruit smoothie has carbohydrates, higher levels of multiple vitamins and minerals, fiber, and maybe some protein or fat.

But just because one food contains more nutrients than another, doesn’t mean:
You always have to choose the more nutrient dense food
The food that’s less nutrient dense is bad or unhealthy

It’s ok to eat a wide variety of foods. Not everything you choose has to be the most nutrient dense food you can choose.

In fact, focusing too much on loading up on something like fiber, can cause digestive discomfort and even lower nutrient absorption.

And stress overall, contributes to lower nutrient absorption.

The best thing you can do is relax about your food choices, eat foods you enjoy, choose a variety, and listen to your body’s cues.

Sometimes that might mean that you choose the donut and other times you might choose the fruit smoothie. Neither has to be an ALWAYS choice, and neither makes YOU better or worse for choosing it.

And if you need support in making peace with food, schedule your free 15-minute call to see if we're a fit at Calendly.com/NicoleCruzRD/15min

What do you think your child needs to hear when it comes to food and their body?What messages do you think you might be ...
05/05/2021

What do you think your child needs to hear when it comes to food and their body?

What messages do you think you might be sending about food and their body?

What messages might they be getting from the world around them about food and their body?

This last one is the hardest part for me. I know I don’t do things *perfect* at home, whatever that means. But I do work to help my children have a positive relationship with food and their body.

However, it’s hard knowing that I can only do so much in my home but I can’t protect them from the messages they’ll receive from the rest of the world.

The world that says:
👉 Your body needs to be controlled
👉 A preferable body does exist and you should try to get it
👉 Thin is good and fat is bad
👉 You need to control your food
👉 You should only eat “healthy” foods
👉 If you don’t control your food, you’ll be “out of control”
👉 Being big is unhealthy
👉 Some bodies are more worthy and desirable

I could go on and on… but I won’t!

Instead, here are some things your child, and mine, ACTUALLY need to hear:
💛 Your body is perfect just the way it is
💛 I trust you to eat the amount you need
💛All bodies are good bodies
💛 Your body loves to get food for energy
💛 You can listen to your body
💛 Your body knows what to do with all different foods

Even though we can’t change the world overnight, we can work to create a different culture in our home.

What else would you add to this list?

For more conversation on these topics with like-minded individuals, join our Free Facebook Group - Joyful Eating for Your Family today at https://www.facebook.com/groups/joyfuleatingforyourfamily

What do you think your child needs to hear when it comes to food and their body?

What messages do you think you might be sending about food and their body?

What messages might they be getting from the world around them about food and their body?

This last one is the hardest part for me. I know I don’t do things *perfect* at home, whatever that means. But I do work to help my children have a positive relationship with food and their body.

However, it’s hard knowing that I can only do so much in my home but I can’t protect them from the messages they’ll receive from the rest of the world.

The world that says:
👉 Your body needs to be controlled
👉 A preferable body does exist and you should try to get it
👉 Thin is good and fat is bad
👉 You need to control your food
👉 You should only eat “healthy” foods
👉 If you don’t control your food, you’ll be “out of control”
👉 Being big is unhealthy
👉 Some bodies are more worthy and desirable

I could go on and on… but I won’t!

Instead, here are some things your child, and mine, ACTUALLY need to hear:
💛 Your body is perfect just the way it is
💛 I trust you to eat the amount you need
💛All bodies are good bodies
💛 Your body loves to get food for energy
💛 You can listen to your body
💛 Your body knows what to do with all different foods

Even though we can’t change the world overnight, we can work to create a different culture in our home.

What else would you add to this list?

For more conversation on these topics with like-minded individuals, join our Free Facebook Group - Joyful Eating for Your Family today at https://www.facebook.com/groups/joyfuleatingforyourfamily

If you fit back into your pre-baby pants, good for you! And if you don’t, good for you too 😘[Sidenote: this doesn’t have...
05/04/2021

If you fit back into your pre-baby pants, good for you! And if you don’t, good for you too 😘

[Sidenote: this doesn’t have to be pre-baby - it could be high school or college jeans, your wedding dress, or any other period of time you use as a gauge for your body]

No matter what, bodies are supposed to change. It would be strange if you looked the same as you did when you were 5, 10, 12, etc. And that’s not just kids’ bodies.

Your adult body is supposed to change too. Once you hit 18, you’re not supposed to have the same body for the rest of your life.

For some reason we’re often ok with children’s bodies changing. We recognize that’s normal. They’re supposed to grow and develop.

But once we hit adulthood, we change our beliefs and expectations about bodies.

How does that even make sense though? If you feel this way, like you *should* look like you did pre-whatever, it makes sense because our culture is constantly telling us how to look younger and fix ourselves to go back in time. We show pictures of the mama that had her pre-baby body “back” after 6 weeks. We give kudos and ask how she did it.

So it’s not strange if you want to look like you did at some point, that part makes sense. However, our expectations and cultural beliefs as a whole don’t make sense.

Bodies are supposed to grow, change, and simply be different with time.

If your body doesn’t change that much, that’s perfectly fine and beautiful in it’s own right.

And if your body does change more significantly, that’s also perfectly fine and beautiful as well.

You are not more worthy because your body changes less. And on the flip-side, you don’t need to do anything to try and fit back into your old clothes. You are worthy in the body you have today.

When you’re ready to get support and heal your relationship with food, we’re here. Schedule your free call to see if we might be a fit at Calendly.com/NicoleCruzRD/15min

If you fit back into your pre-baby pants, good for you! And if you don’t, good for you too 😘

[Sidenote: this doesn’t have to be pre-baby - it could be high school or college jeans, your wedding dress, or any other period of time you use as a gauge for your body]

No matter what, bodies are supposed to change. It would be strange if you looked the same as you did when you were 5, 10, 12, etc. And that’s not just kids’ bodies.

Your adult body is supposed to change too. Once you hit 18, you’re not supposed to have the same body for the rest of your life.

For some reason we’re often ok with children’s bodies changing. We recognize that’s normal. They’re supposed to grow and develop.

But once we hit adulthood, we change our beliefs and expectations about bodies.

How does that even make sense though? If you feel this way, like you *should* look like you did pre-whatever, it makes sense because our culture is constantly telling us how to look younger and fix ourselves to go back in time. We show pictures of the mama that had her pre-baby body “back” after 6 weeks. We give kudos and ask how she did it.

So it’s not strange if you want to look like you did at some point, that part makes sense. However, our expectations and cultural beliefs as a whole don’t make sense.

Bodies are supposed to grow, change, and simply be different with time.

If your body doesn’t change that much, that’s perfectly fine and beautiful in it’s own right.

And if your body does change more significantly, that’s also perfectly fine and beautiful as well.

You are not more worthy because your body changes less. And on the flip-side, you don’t need to do anything to try and fit back into your old clothes. You are worthy in the body you have today.

When you’re ready to get support and heal your relationship with food, we’re here. Schedule your free call to see if we might be a fit at Calendly.com/NicoleCruzRD/15min

If you have a kiddo who eats a lot by your standards, or you’re scared about their weight, know you’re not alone.⁠⁠So ma...
05/03/2021

If you have a kiddo who eats a lot by your standards, or you’re scared about their weight, know you’re not alone.⁠

So many parents are concerned about their child’s eating patterns and behaviors. And eating too much or seemingly needing to eat all the time, is a very common worry.⁠

The tricky part is that parents often want to set limits on food or try to control the behavior. It seems like that would be the answer. The same is true for adults. Most adults think they just shouldn’t keep certain foods in the house, they need to limit their own portions, count calories, or follow a diet/eating plan because they have no willpower or need to control their own intake.⁠

From an outside perspective, it does seem like that would be the answer: control the behavior, limit the food.⁠

The problem is, that actually perpetuates the very behavior you were concerned about to begin with.⁠

Whether restriction is in the form of a self-imposed diet, limited portions, or someone else dictating types of food and amounts that are allowed, it feel like deprivation. And in turn, deprivation leads to eating from a reactive place.⁠

It distracts from listening to food desires and internal regulatory cues. It makes anyone focus on what they can’t have and also eat from a place of fear. When will I get food again? I’m not going to be allowed this food again so I better eat as much as possible right now while I can… type of thinking.⁠

And this isn’t just theory, the research supports that restrictive eating leads to eating more.⁠

The best thing you can do for your child is to follow the division of responsibility in feeding. Provide a variety of food consistently, and allow your child to eat the amount they need and desire. And if this is something you struggle with, look into Intuitive Eating.⁠

You and your child deserve to have food freedom! 💜

For more conversation on these topics with like-minded individuals, join our Free Facebook Group - Joyful Eating for Your Family today at https://www.facebook.com/groups/joyfuleatingforyourfamily

If you have a kiddo who eats a lot by your standards, or you’re scared about their weight, know you’re not alone.⁠

So many parents are concerned about their child’s eating patterns and behaviors. And eating too much or seemingly needing to eat all the time, is a very common worry.⁠

The tricky part is that parents often want to set limits on food or try to control the behavior. It seems like that would be the answer. The same is true for adults. Most adults think they just shouldn’t keep certain foods in the house, they need to limit their own portions, count calories, or follow a diet/eating plan because they have no willpower or need to control their own intake.⁠

From an outside perspective, it does seem like that would be the answer: control the behavior, limit the food.⁠

The problem is, that actually perpetuates the very behavior you were concerned about to begin with.⁠

Whether restriction is in the form of a self-imposed diet, limited portions, or someone else dictating types of food and amounts that are allowed, it feel like deprivation. And in turn, deprivation leads to eating from a reactive place.⁠

It distracts from listening to food desires and internal regulatory cues. It makes anyone focus on what they can’t have and also eat from a place of fear. When will I get food again? I’m not going to be allowed this food again so I better eat as much as possible right now while I can… type of thinking.⁠

And this isn’t just theory, the research supports that restrictive eating leads to eating more.⁠

The best thing you can do for your child is to follow the division of responsibility in feeding. Provide a variety of food consistently, and allow your child to eat the amount they need and desire. And if this is something you struggle with, look into Intuitive Eating.⁠

You and your child deserve to have food freedom! 💜

For more conversation on these topics with like-minded individuals, join our Free Facebook Group - Joyful Eating for Your Family today at https://www.facebook.com/groups/joyfuleatingforyourfamily

Ok. But only one!Don’t go near the cookies!Keep those away from me!You can’t be around cookies or you’ll eat them all.Yo...
05/02/2021

Ok. But only one!
Don’t go near the cookies!
Keep those away from me!
You can’t be around cookies or you’ll eat them all.
You need more self-control.
You always eat too many.
Just stop. Why can’t you have just one?
Put the box away. That’s enough.

Do you have a food you feel like you eat too much of every time you’re around it? Maybe it’s cookies. Or chips, pizza, popcorn, ice cream, pretzels, candy… it could be anything!

And maybe you call yourself names, beat yourself up, and tell yourself to only eat one. Or you find yourself having a few handfuls and then fighting with yourself to put the bag away.

Maybe you finally throw it out because you’re so sick of thinking about the candy, cookies, etc. And maybe that “works” or you might end up digging it back out of the trash.

You feel out of control and tell yourself: I can’t be around ‘x’ because I’ll eat all of it.⁠ I have to stop myself at one. I really *shouldn’t* have ANY more.

I hear this from my clients, friends, family, and I used to feel this way myself.⁠

I truly believed it was an inherent flaw within me. I just needed to have more self-control. And I personally went through different phases of it. There were phases when I was eating a lot more of the chocolate, cake, cookies… and I still felt out of control. But even though I was eating them - I didn’t have PERMISSION.⁠

Instead, I was telling myself how horrible I am, that I should really cut back. I was looking up diets and tricks to stop eating so much. I was never present with the food I was eating. And I was always planning for how I would cut it out.⁠

This is deprivation.

Your resistance to eating it, and your blame and shame, creates a sense of deprivation - that you shouldn’t be having it- you’re doing something bad or wrong. And from that place, you eat more.⁠

So when you tell yourself to only eat one, or you shouldn't have any… when you want to enlist more self-control, you're likely going to push yourself to feel MORE out of control. Instead, consider compassion, self-care, and permission ❤️

If you struggle with this, know you're not alone AND it doesn't have to be this way, schedule your free 15-minute call to see if we're a fit at Calendly.com/NicoleCruzRD/15min

Ok. But only one!
Don’t go near the cookies!
Keep those away from me!
You can’t be around cookies or you’ll eat them all.
You need more self-control.
You always eat too many.
Just stop. Why can’t you have just one?
Put the box away. That’s enough.

Do you have a food you feel like you eat too much of every time you’re around it? Maybe it’s cookies. Or chips, pizza, popcorn, ice cream, pretzels, candy… it could be anything!

And maybe you call yourself names, beat yourself up, and tell yourself to only eat one. Or you find yourself having a few handfuls and then fighting with yourself to put the bag away.

Maybe you finally throw it out because you’re so sick of thinking about the candy, cookies, etc. And maybe that “works” or you might end up digging it back out of the trash.

You feel out of control and tell yourself: I can’t be around ‘x’ because I’ll eat all of it.⁠ I have to stop myself at one. I really *shouldn’t* have ANY more.

I hear this from my clients, friends, family, and I used to feel this way myself.⁠

I truly believed it was an inherent flaw within me. I just needed to have more self-control. And I personally went through different phases of it. There were phases when I was eating a lot more of the chocolate, cake, cookies… and I still felt out of control. But even though I was eating them - I didn’t have PERMISSION.⁠

Instead, I was telling myself how horrible I am, that I should really cut back. I was looking up diets and tricks to stop eating so much. I was never present with the food I was eating. And I was always planning for how I would cut it out.⁠

This is deprivation.

Your resistance to eating it, and your blame and shame, creates a sense of deprivation - that you shouldn’t be having it- you’re doing something bad or wrong. And from that place, you eat more.⁠

So when you tell yourself to only eat one, or you shouldn't have any… when you want to enlist more self-control, you're likely going to push yourself to feel MORE out of control. Instead, consider compassion, self-care, and permission ❤️

If you struggle with this, know you're not alone AND it doesn't have to be this way, schedule your free 15-minute call to see if we're a fit at Calendly.com/NicoleCruzRD/15min

Address

Thousand Oaks, CA
91301

General information

Nicole Cruz is a registered dietitian providing nutrition therapy. Nicole specializes in treating eating disorders and also provides nutrition counseling for a variety of medical conditions.

Opening Hours

Monday 09:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 09:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 18:00
Thursday 09:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(805) 341-9044

Alerts

Be the first to know and let us send you an email when Nicole Cruz, MS, RD Nutrition Consultant posts news and promotions. Your email address will not be used for any other purpose, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Contact The Business

Send a message to Nicole Cruz, MS, RD Nutrition Consultant:

Videos

Nearby health & beauty businesses


Other Health & Wellness Websites in Thousand Oaks

Show All

Comments

Ahh! I need help with resources for a 10 yr old kid in response to diet culture showing up in school instruction. I know lots of stuff for me, but it's more geared towards people who have had a lot of experience with diet culture already, and she is only peripherally aware of it because of how we talk about food in our house (we practice division of responsibility mostly. I try to follow Ellyn Satter.) My 5th grade 10 yr old daughter had an English lesson based on this essay (below) today and I was so irked. SO irked. She started getting defensive about her weight (! she is a thin kid! also it shouldn't matter!) and apparently kids were telling her it was wrong that she has soda every day. (She has maybe 4-6 oz of soda with dinner.) I'm going to write a letter to her teacher. But if I had something to point to it would be really helpful. I particularly was bothered by this paragraph because it's going to send a really all-or-nothing message, along with serious fear about death (CW this is chock-full of diet culture scare-mongering): "You've probably heard the facts before: Over the past three decades. childhood obesity rates in the Unites States have tripled. Today, more than 23 million children and teens are overweight or obese, which places them at increased risk for serious diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, and stroke. Consequently, wholesome and nutritious school lunches are essential. Think of them as preventative medicine against long-term health problems."