Kim is incredibly creative and pairs foods together in ways that speak to her culinary prowess. Her ability to tweak and play with recipes is inspirational. Looking for meal inspo and specific details for her go-to dishes? See below.
Diata: Thanks for sitting down with us Kim! Tell us a bit about your experience before coming to Diata …
Kim: Growing up, I was athlete and always doing something active — I was a runner and a gymnast. When I was working in the office, I spent a good deal of time at my desk or on the phone. At the time, I was eating out a lot and working long hours (and had an undiagnosed gut issue), so I ended up gaining weight over the years.
Diata: What was your ‘aha moment’ to get back in shape?
Kim: I started doing volunteer work with SOAR - Philadelphia and wanted to have more energy to participate in all of our charity events (such the virtual 5k we recently hosted).
My ‘aha moment’ was when I came across a motivational quote that said ‘one year from now you would have wished you started today.’ It really struck a chord with me and I decided enough is enough, and got to work!
Diata: Tell us a bit about your health journey.
Kim: Prior to Diata, I was having some digestive health issues, but at the time, I did not realize that my weight gain and gut issues were directly connected. I went to a handful of different doctors and had a good deal of testing done only to be put on medications to treat the symptoms.
Through the Diata Health program, not only did I lose weight, I also rebalanced my gut lining and healed my digestive tract, and I no longer need medication. I am thrilled — we were able to treat the root of the problem and not just the symptoms.
Diata: How have you found the program during COVID?
Kim: With all the chaos today, I find the routine of prepping food helps to keep me grounded. With COVID, it’s so easy to fall out of a daily routine, and to not eat at set times. I made the conscious decision to use the program to establish some routine and normalcy in my life, and have found it to be tremendously helpful.
Diata: What advice would you have for someone just starting the program?
Kim: You can’t think one dimensionally when it comes to food! If you are just eating raw and steamed veggies over and over again, you are not going to enjoy the food and inevitably, you are going to go off program. It is just too bland and too repetitive. You need another taste!
I worked a lot with Dr. Constable to find dishes that I love and that were easy to stock-up on ahead of time. I am pretty busy during the week so I needed options that I could just grab and go during the weekdays. In order to make sure I always have healthy options, I’ll prep and batch cook for the week ahead of time.
For example, I always have a big batch of the Diata ‘Asian fried rice’ recipe in the frig. Sometimes I’ll have it as a main meal and just scramble up some eggs, or toss in some tofu, and be good to go. If I am in the mood to cook a different protein, I’ll warm some ‘rice’ as a side dish.
If you put in a bit of work ahead of time — deciding what you will eat for each meal, cooking in batches and freezing extra for the future — you take out all of the stress of eating healthy. The food is already there for you so it is so easy to stay on plan.
Diata: Okay, you are clearly a big foodie — we want to know more. Specifics please!
Kim: Of course! Here are some ideas that first pop into my mind —
I love making roll-up sandwiches using the pancakes. If I’m in the mood for something sweet, I’ll make the pancake into a crepe by adding a bit more water to the mixture and sautéing some berries or pears to put on top, or even to put them in the batter and sprinkle them with cinnamon.
As a delicious meal, I’ll bake up a ton of veggies and add a protein. One of my favorites is onions, grape tomatoes, olives and artichoke hearts. I can have a bit of feta cheese on my program so I like to add in some shrimp and feta for a Mediterranean feel. It’s so easy to make and has a ton of delicious, hearty flavors.
I also like to have my ‘fall-back meals’ ready to go. Whether it’s pre-cut veggies, ‘egg muffins’ that I toss in the freezer, or a big batch of homemade soup, prepping ahead of time really does set you up for success and makes it so much easier to stay on plan when you’re pinched for time.
Other options that are great in a pinch: a dozen hard-boiled eggs, pumpkin turkey chili (freezes well), add in crabmeat (or shrimp) to tomato soup, pre-measured and pre-cut veggies and salads (I’ll toss a few salads into a separate ziploc bags for a grab-and-go option during the week). The bars also work well when you’re in a squeeze.
Diata: Favorite part of your success?
Kim: Fitting into clothes better is always fun, but what I really love is knowing that I made a commitment to myself to 1) prioritize myself and 2) take back control of my health. Especially these days, it is so important to have a strong foundation of health (and not be carrying around excess weight). This is a lifestyle for me now. I am so happy being at my goal weight — I don’t ever want to go back!
Diata: Insider pro tip from Kim —
Kim: Right down the street from the Diata office is a little boutique called the Clothes Mentor - Ardmore. As I was losing weight, I had all these beautiful pieces of clothing that no longer fit (too big for me)… and also needed new clothing for my new, smaller size.
At Clothes Mentor - Ardmore, you can sell the clothes you no longer need and purchase thrift clothing (often with tags still on) for your new size. It’s a great option for both your ‘new temporary size’ as you’re losing weight and for when you hit goal. Once you lose the weight, you will never be going back to your original size so it makes senses to sell that clothing! Clothes Mentor - Ardmore is a really cute little shop, and the store owner, Sharon, is absolutely lovely and incredibly friendly. Since it’s so close to the Diata office, I like to pop in after picking up some food items. I highly recommend it, it’s definitely worth checking out — let Sharon know I sent you!
Kim is truly an inspiration. In addition to taking back control of her health and dropping the extra weight, she is an absolute joy to be around. To learn more about the Non-Profit she volunteers with, reach out to SOAR at email@example.com or learn more online here.
Here at Diata, our mission is help our patients get to their healthy, and happy weight for good. Should you be interested in learning more about our program here at Diata Health, reach out to learn more.