Week 1: The Kick Off.

Becoming a dietitian wasn’t easy. I went to school when my first born was only 10 months old and I only 20 years of age. A 5 year degree from the University of British Columbia took me nearly 8 years. I’ve been happily working at one of the nation’s busiest hospital for the last 10 years in areas of diabetes, medicine and now kidney disease.  I’ve had 2 more kids since graduation, have had a divorce and re-married. Life happened, no doubt there! Recently, I had a strong desire to do something different-live a little. Do the things I’ve put off for so long. To take care of ME and chase the dreams that I let go of so long ago.

So what’s my dream? You see, being a dietitian, I could tell you how many calories are in the tall caramel macchiato you are about to drink or the sugar in that banana you are about to devour. I could educate you on how to increase the fiber in your diet, how to eat “less salt”,  how to count carbohydrates to manage your blood sugars and in theory even how to lose weight.  Honestly I could give you endless nutritional advice; after all, that is what I do for a living….well usually. But during my experience with clinical dietetics, defined by Oxford Dictionary as, “the branch of knowledge concerned with the diet and its effect on health, especially with the practical application of a scientific understanding of nutrition”,  the most challenging part has been the human psychology of eating. You see, people, like you and I, generally know what to eat. Ask yourself, if there is one change you could make in your diet to make you healthier what would it be? See you know too.  There is a myriad of information on food and nutrition. Go ahead, I dare you-google “diet”. You will get approximately 669,000,000 results. But you see, knowledge is like seeing the moon, you know of it’s existence, you see it but it’s far from your reach. The ability to apply and experience knowledge is limited to only a few folks. I’d say they have a spaceship and I want one too.

Let me tell you more about me. I’m a 38 years old woman from a Pakistani ethnicity. Immigrated to Canada in 1981 and been here since. I’m a full-time working mother with 3 lovely kids (Marz (18 years old), Zamin (9 years old), Sakina (7 years old)), a loving husband who tirelessly supports me, and a very busy social life. Our family has made a commitment to give our time to serving our community. We are involved in endless fundraisers, community events and even politics (no I’m not that boring but you have to be the change you would like to see in the world said a wise man once. On top of that, I have a private practice that is thriving and I’m in the midst of joining hands with a group of physicians in South Surrey, BC.

Now, the hard part, I’m 160 cm tall and weigh in at  87.2 kg (actual weight this morning) which puts me at a body mass index (a measurement using simple math (weight (kg)/height(m)squared) used by health professionals to calculate how a person’s weight correlates to risk of developing health issues such as diabetes, heart disease etc)of 34. A BMI of 18.5 to 25 is considered “healthy”. A BMI of 25-30 is defined as “overweight” and a BMI of over 30 is defined as “obese”. So mathematically speaking,  I’m classified as obese. Recently, during a visit with my cardiologist, I was diagnosed with diabetes. I had gestational during my last 2 pregnancies so this didn’t come as a surprise but I was sure hoping it wouldn’t happen to me in my 30s. More so, I have a family history of heart disease which led my father’s death at the tender age of 41. My paternal grandfather had his first by-pass in his 40s as well. One of the markers of cardiac inflammation is sensitive CRP-mine is elevated. My cardiologist is concerned and so am I. In fact, I’m in shock. I’m on Rosuvastatin despite good cholesterol levels as a preventative measure to prevent a heart attack. I have been started on Glumetza (a long acting form of Metformin).  I can’t afford to die in my 40s or have a heart attack. After all, 40s are the new 20s! I’m fearful but I can change. I can evolve.  As I’m embarking on this journey of self-interest, self-evaluation and self-change, I want to share this journey with you.

Why share? I’m sharing this journey with you for 3 reasons:

  • Accountability. I feel like I will be more committed to my journey to achieve health when I share my intentions with others. My journey will be more genuine and real as I share the challenges of being human.
  • Inspiration. I want to inspire others to embark on a journey with me.  Will power is the most challenging part of change. I hope my will to change will empower others and I hope your changes will give me some inspiration too. I want you to share your story with me too!
  • For fun. What’s a good idea if it isn’t shared?? I want to share my recipes, my barriers  and how I overcame not indulging in chocolate cake last night with you. A little compassion didn’t hurt anyone ever!
  • Now what can you expect?

    1. I am hoping to share my ideas, recipes and activity on a weekly basis. You will get insight on what I’ve been eating including my weekly menu, recipes and activities of daily living. I will be making small changes at a time and will incorporate how I achieved those goals. I will make it fun and do different things so keep reading.
    2. I will also share the psychology of self-change, my barriers and challenges and how I overcome them. I want to share the “human” experience with you.
    3. You may also add me to instagram as akbarlailard and follow me there as well.

    I’m looking forward to my journey and sharing them with you. Let’s evolve together.

    With Love and Compassion,

    Laila Hussain, B.Sc., RD, CNSC

    Dietitian on a diet

    PS-Bear with me as I learn the world of blogging. You may encounter some grammatical errors and edit as I go along. Please comment below and do add yourself to “follow” to subscribe to my blog and get an email when I publish my blog. Thanks!






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