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Francesca Esposito


Francesca Esposito
BSc. DIET, PG DIP DIET (UN), MNutr (US)

 

1. What qualifications do you have?

A Bachelor of Science in Dietetics Degree from the University of Natal and have also completed my Masters in Nutrition through Stellenbosch University.
 

2. What work experience did you have before going into private practice?

After completing my studies I worked in government hospitals and then spent time working for the Department of Paediatrics & Child Health at the Nelson R. Mandela School of Medicine, University of KwaZulu Natal, where I was involved in research as well as work at a community clinic for individuals with HIV/ AIDS.
 

3. What does your work involve?

A large part of my job involves individual consultations at our private practice and working on various projects for corporate companies. We also deliver presentations on nutrition-related topics at company wellness days, symposiums and events and write for the media. Along with my colleagues, I provide nutrition information for different publications, including the Business Day newspaper and various magazines as well as articles for medical journals, such as The Specialist Forum, SA Rheumatology Journal and the South African Cardiology & Stroke Journal. I have also been a guest on radio shows, such as Classic Health on Classic FM, Metro FM and Radio 702.
 

4. What makes dietetics a valuable profession?

The role of good nutrition in promoting health and preventing disease is well known. In the context of the modern world it has become increasingly difficult to eat healthily and there is a lot of confusion around what a healthy diet consists of, partly as a result of the abundance of nutrition misinformation. As dietitians we are able to empower individuals with the knowledge needed to achieve their goals and navigate the challenging roads of lifestyle change necessary to optimise their health and well being.
 

5. Do you have a special interest in dietetics?

I have a special interest in the diseases of lifestyle, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer. My other areas of interest include weight loss, insulin resistance, polycystic ovarian syndrome, childhood overweight and obesity, nutrition for the elderly and vegetarianism, as well as assisting individuals with raised cholesterol levels, high blood pressure, compromised immune systems and those who are underweight or undernourished. Dietetics is a very challenging field to work in and I am very interested in reading up on current research and trends in nutrition and staying up-to-date.
 

6. Provide three nutrition tips for healthier living.

I love these tips from the book “Food Rules” by Michael Pollan:

  1. “It’s not food if it arrived through the window of your car”
  2. “Don’t eat breakfast cereals that change the color of the milk”
  3. “Don’t get your fuel from the same place your car does”