Meet the Authors
Heather Borders, RD, LD/N
I'm Heather Borders, a Culinary Dietitian with a private practice in Northeast Florida! My career path didn't start out in nutrition. In fact, I like to say that I'm a recovering engineer; in my past life, I worked for NASA training astronauts and then as a Product Manager for a large medical device company. I love all things Auburn, space exploration, and am addicted to the thought of #vanlife (google it).
Well, it's really my husband's story.
Even though my career has taken several twists and turns, I knew that a career in nutrition was my calling once my husband and I were able to dramatically lower his cholesterol by making a dietary lifestyle change toward eating more plant-based foods. Six weeks after making the dietary switch, with no exercise component, my husband's cholesterol dropped from 311 to 230. His triglycerides dropped from 305 to 105. He also dropped about 15 pounds. We weren't sure what we had stumbled upon or what changes would stick, but it was obvious that making an effort to deliberately add in fruits, vegetables, beans, and whole grains resulted in a dramatic decrease in cholesterol.
Dietary Change Led to Career Change
After the personal experience of learning a new way to cook and seeing the results, I knew I wanted a life that supported others on their own health journey. I knew that cooking had to be more than just part of the conversation. So I decided to begin teaching cooking classes, showing people how to take simple ingredients and put together dishes that didn't take much time and tasted amazing. I decided to go back to school and become a Registered Dietitian.
Everyone deserves to live out their potential, feel amazing, and be able to taste life. It's a privilege to be invited to be a part of someone else's health journey. I hope that this course is just a step closer to achieving your own health goals and optimal life.
Christie Gallardo, MS, RD, LD/N
My nutrition journey started in my undergrad at FSU when I kept bothering my roommate about eating pizza rolls and hot pockets all the time. She said to me, "you're always bugging me about nutrition. Why don't you change your major to dietetics?" and though she was joking, it was one of the biggest AH-HA moments of my life.
I knew I was into nutrition since I was always watching videos, reading research, and listening to podcasts, but I never considered nutrition as a professional career.
Since then, I pursued a master's degree at the University of North Florida in nutrition, which I am a few weeks away from completing. In a few short months, I'll finally be a registered dietitian! My interests include wellness and holistic nutrition.
In addition to dietetics, I am also a yoga and Acroyoga instructor, which is my other full-time passion! I love being upside down and connecting with others all while creating community. Yoga has allowed me to explore a more mindful and centered lifestyle that pairs excellently with my knowledge of nutrition.
Alongside Heather, we co-created this grocery store tour to help make the mundane task of going to the grocery store easier. We want to help you know what you're looking for, and when presented with two options, give you the knowledge to know which one is best to choose.
We hope you enjoy the tour as much as we enjoyed creating it for you.
Thank you for being here,
Hello! My name is Gabriella Romano and I graduated with my bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida. I am now steps away from completing my Master of Science and dietetic internship at the University of North Florida in December 2022.
From early high school, I have been fascinated by the role that optimal nutrition can play in our mental and physical well-being. After making significant changes to my own diet and lifestyle, I noticed a drastic difference in my energy, mood, and overall health. Experimenting with recipes in which nutrient-dense, whole foods are swapped with less wholesome ingredients is one of my favorite past-times. Through my research, clinical, and community-based experiences, I believe that proper nutrition education may be the key to solving many of the nation’s and world’s preventable chronic diseases. You can find me on Instagram at @how2speakfood.