Helen Barnett

Dietitian

Are you tired of the endless cycle of dieting that leaves you hungry, depleted amd exhausted? Are you looking for a new way to enjoy food and eating, or to change your relationship with your body while getting back to good health? My philosophy is based on healthy eating principles that supports you to eat intuitively, while focusing on self-care, self-compassion and nourishing your body in every way.

a new way to think about ‘diet’

We live in a society that constantly bombards us with messages that we need to be thin. That we need to change our bodies to be acceptable or to”fit in”. That our bodies aren’t good enough as they are. This “diet culture” is everywhere – from magazines, chemist weight loss programmes, celebrity chef diet cookbooks, weight loss competitions on TV to the nightly news, newspaper articles, statistics on “obesity” rates, online 12 week challenges, and local boot camps. All of these continually entrench the idea that we are not good enough, or acceptable enough as we are and we need to engage in punishing regimes to change ourselves.

Interestingly, in most cases, if you analyse who is driving the programme or challenge, they usually don’t have much knowledge themselves about Nutrition. They’re just trying to sell a product. Which is why a new diet book appears each week (or day!) promising to solve our weight loss problems. You also need to think long and hard about how many people have actually succeeded on these programmes. 

It’s no wonder I’ve had so many clients come in and tell me they are so confused over what they should do. Should they do Paleo? Keto? Gluten Free? Juice fasts? Low Carb? Meal replacements? Is dairy a problem? What about Sugar? Intermittent Fasting?

My thoughts? All these diets are restrictive and punishing, and don’t allow us to listen to what our body needs, and so, over time we lose the ability to know what we do need. Consequently, our relationship with food changes so that we have a whole heap of rules around food – yet a lot of the time, because the drive for food is so fundamental, we break these rules. But this results in intense guilt and shame. I don’t know about you, but what happened the last time you banned yourself from a having chocolate….????? (Get the drift? Yes – I’ve been there!!!)

Here you will find information that will help you rediscover your love of food and feel safe eating. You will learn to nurture your body from a place of love, and you will learn to listen to what your body needs from a place of self care rather than react out of guilt and shame.

 

 

“Growing into your future … requires a dedication to caring for yourself as if you were rare and precious, which you are, and regarding all life around you as equally so, which it is.” ~ Victoria Moran

 

Hi! My name is Helen and I live in the gorgeous food and wine town of Orange in the central west of NSW. I am passionate about helping people heal their  relationship with food and their body by taking the focus off their weight and focusing on health. 

I have a huge amount of compassion for people struggling with weight issues. Although people can’t see it now, I was mercilessly teased through primary school for being “fat” (I couldn’t wait to leave as I’d had years of being called “fat heifer”), and by my early teens, I was close to being obese (if you get to know me, you’ll discover, I actually despise these terms!). I deliberately have a photo I love of my husband and me just after we got engaged 17 years ago on my desk in my office, as it shows me almost 20kg heavier than I am now – just so that you can see that my story checks out (though I do really love the photo!).

To be honest, when I went back to University to study Nutrition and Dietetics, I hoped to find the answer to effortless and lasting weight loss. I’m sorry to say I didn’t find it. What I did find was not only incredibly disappointing but downright scary. While it was no surprise to me that the environment in which we live has a lot to answer for in terms of making it so difficult for us to eat well and get enough exercise, it was the harm done by dieting that really blew me away. Once I left university and discovered the Health at Every Size paradigm and the Non-Diet approach, I really began to understand just how pervasive “diet-culture” is. We are constantly told we need to change our bodies to be good enough, yet it is exactly these practices – the restrictive diets and punishing exercise regimes that leave our bodies exhausted and depleted. And far from healthy and energised. 

I think it was largely from my own experiences of weight loss and dieting attempts that I finally discovered that I had to love and nurture my body, to learn to listen to it and not feel guilty about it that eventually liberated me from dieting, and allowed my weight to stabilise at a healthy weight.

Now, I’m not saying that exercise and a nutritious diet aren’t key aspects of weight management – but its how we think about it that is important: Are you limiting food so you can become “thin” (whatever that is)? Or are you nourishing your body so you are healthy? Are you engaging in physical exercise so you lose weight? Or are moving your body because it makes you feel energised and awesome? Both will likely achieve the same aim (at least in the short term) – but 1 will be more sustainable, enjoyable and have long term health benefits.

I also provide services in many other areas, so please head to my services page for further information regarding how I work, or look under chronic disease management for general information regarding the range of services I provide.

If you’d like to know more about me and my background, read more here.

 

Let’s Work Together!

I work at:

Colour City Medical Practice

71 Dalton St, Orange

Ph: 6360 2388, Mob: 0438 633 038

email: helen@helenbarnett.com.au

 

Appointments:

Mon: 9:00-5:30

Wed: 8:30-5:30

Fri: 8:30 – 11:30

Tues, Thurs and Sat by Request

 

Handpicked resources

Books, Resources, Blogs and More

I do lots of reading. And I’m connected to people through forums throughout the world who do lots of reading. On this page you’ll find a list of the best Nutrition resources to inspire and expand your thinking.