Mindful Living and Healthy Eating: An Interview with Nutritionist Isha Bella
Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food." - Hippocrates
We are thrilled to share this interview with Isha Bella, as mindful living and healthy eating go hand in hand. As a highly esteemed nutritionist, Isha Bella provides us with a wealth of knowledge on the importance of embracing a healthy lifestyle through proper nutrition and regular physical activity. Throughout the interview, she delves into her personal journey, which ignited her passion for nutrition, and draws on her extensive experience in supporting patients with pre-diabetes, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and high cholesterol.
Not only does Isha Bella offer practical tips on how to maintain healthy habits, but she also emphasizes the significance of prioritizing mental health. As the conversation concludes, she shares her optimistic outlook for the future of nutrition and healthy lifestyle culture, highlighting the necessity of providing accurate, science-based information to the younger generation to instill healthy habits from an early age.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and your work in promoting healthy eating and active lifestyles? What inspired you to focus on nutrition and healthy lifestyles, and how have you seen them impact individuals in their personal and professional lives?
Greetings! I am delighted to share with you my story and work in promoting healthy eating and active lifestyles. My professional journey began in the finance industry where I pursued an undergraduate degree in finance. However, after more than a year in the financial sector, I realized that it was not the environment I wanted for myself, and the stress and lifestyle took a toll on my health.
Driven by my passion for healthy living and a desire to make a meaningful difference in people's lives, I decided to become a nutritionist. As someone who has always been fascinated by nutrition and health, I have been an avid reader of research studies on the subject and lead an active lifestyle while eating plant-based whole foods.
Despite having no science background, I found an institute in London that offered a master's degree in nutrition, and I enrolled in an eight-month online short course. While studying, I worked part-time with the National Health Services in the UK, the country's largest health system, where I collaborated with dietitians and doctors in managing patients with pre-diabetes, obesity, type 2 diabetes, and high cholesterol. After completing my degree, I was offered a full-time position, which I happily accepted.
My inspiration for focusing on nutrition and healthy lifestyles comes from the realization that all of the science-proven real stories of people getting sick are rooted in what we eat, our stress levels, physical activity, connection with people, sleep, and microbiome. I have come to understand the importance of these factors for our health and how food and lifestyle changes can help individuals without the need for medication. Furthermore, I have encountered numerous misconceptions about diet, even among those around me, which further motivates me to share accurate information that debunks myths.
Through my work, I have witnessed many of my patients improve their health, particularly those with type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol. Many have gone into remission with the help of lifestyle changes or a combination of medication and lifestyle changes.
In the present time, I am about to launch an online 1-2-1 consultation for movement and nutrition called Micro Mindfulness. The idea is to make small changes at a time and build healthy habits that are sustainable in the long run.
Overall, I am humbled to be able to work in a field that I am passionate about and that allows me to help others improve their health and quality of life.
Eating well and staying active can be challenging for people who lead busy lives. What are some practical tips you can offer to individuals who struggle with maintaining healthy habits?
When it comes to maintaining healthy habits, it can be challenging to make lasting changes especially for those leading busy lives. From my experience, the best advice I can offer is to start small and take things easy. Healthy habits take time to develop, so don't expect to see improvements overnight. Instead, try incorporating simple and manageable changes into your daily routine. For example, start by exercising for just 15 minutes per day or swapping out one unhealthy meal for a healthier alternative. If you struggle with sleeping, try going to bed 5 minutes earlier each night and build up to a full night's sleep.
It's important to remember that drastic changes are often unsustainable in the long-term and can cause you to fall back into unhealthy habits. It's okay to have a lazy day or slip up on your healthy eating or exercise routine. Don't be too hard on yourself and allow yourself the flexibility to enjoy life's little indulgences from time to time. However, when you're ready to get back on track, start small again and listen to your body. Pay attention to how your body feels and adjust your routine as needed to make healthy habits that work for you. By making gradual and consistent progress, you'll find that maintaining a healthy lifestyle becomes easier and more natural over time.
Mental health is an important aspect of overall health and wellness. How can we prioritize our emotional and mental wellbeing while maintaining a healthy lifestyle?
Mental health is indeed a critical aspect of our overall well-being. Research shows that our lifestyle choices, such as our diet, exercise, gut health, and sleep habits, can have a significant impact on our emotional and mental wellness. Therefore, prioritizing a healthy lifestyle can have a positive effect on our mental health.
It's essential to start small but remain consistent in your efforts. Make gradual changes to your diet, incorporate exercise into your routine, and practice good sleep hygiene. Take breaks when necessary and prioritize self-care activities that bring you joy and relaxation, such as reading a book or taking a warm bath.
Remember, our emotional and mental well-being are just as important as our physical health. By prioritizing a healthy lifestyle and taking steps to care for our mental health, we can live a more fulfilling and balanced life.
What are your hopes for the future of nutrition and healthy lifestyle culture, and how do you see them fitting into broader societal trends and values?
As a nutritionist, my sincere hope is for a world where people are more knowledgeable and conscious about nutrition and healthy lifestyles. This is especially important for the younger generation, who need to learn about the value of good nutrition and physical activity from a young age. I have been thrilled to see some schools in the UK incorporating nutrition into their curriculum, and I hope that this trend spreads worldwide.
Social media trends and peer pressure can have a huge impact on young people's eating habits and lifestyle choices, so it's crucial that they have access to accurate and science-based information. Sadly, many people are struggling with undernutrition, including both obesity and underweight, which can have long-term health consequences.
To create a healthier society, it's essential that governments and the private sector work together to promote healthy lifestyle and nutrition. We need to increase people's motivation to embrace healthy choices by making them more accessible and affordable. I believe that this approach will help us lower the rates of many diseases and improve people's overall well-being.
If you wish to collaborate with Isha Bella, kindly reach out to her at the following contact details on Instagram: