Meet Your Nutritionist
Mary-Margaret Leonard is our resident nutritionist at Natur House, Rathmines.
She holds an MSc in Human Nutrition from the University of Ulster and is registered with the Association of Nutrition (ANutr). She is also a qualified midwife (BSc) registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland.
We spoke with Mary-Margaret about her journey to becoming a Natur House nutritionist.
Mary-Margaret, when did you decide you wanted to become a nutritionist?
Throughout my training and career as a midwife, I noticed that the number of overweight people in Ireland was increasing, and that obesity was becoming a major problem. Obesity is a preventable disease caused by lifestyle choices, and I wanted to develop the knowledge and skills necessary to help prevent this epidemic.
What do you love most about your job?
I love helping people to achieve their goals. There is great satisfaction in helping someone to achieve their target weight. At Natur House, we continue to offer free nutritional consultations for 12 months after a person reaches their target weight. This means that I know I’m helping each person not only to lose weight, but, more importantly, to maintain their results on a long-term basis.
What are your top 5 tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle?
- Drink at least 1.5 – 2 litres of water per day.
- Get active; get in as many steps as possible every day.
- Never skip breakfast. Due to busy lifestyles and hectic schedules, many Irish people are not eating breakfast. However, skipping breakfast leads to over-eating for the rest of the day.
- Eat three meals a day and two snacks, and try to eat every 3-4 hours to keep your metabolism working effectively.
- Chew food well and eat slowly. It is extremely important to be mindful of what you are eating. Avoid reading, watching television and using your mobile phone at meal times.
Do you think that there is too much dieting advice in popular culture nowadays?
There is a lot of contradicting advice circulating at the moment. I think if you are looking for advice, it’s important to go to a qualified individual who understands the most recent research and findings in the field of nutrition.
Why do you think the Natur House method works so well for customers?
The Natur House method is brilliant if followed correctly – all it takes is a little bit of dedication. The method involves a low-calorie diet combined with 100% natural herbal supplements to combat either fat, water-retention or stress/anxiety, depending on the individual’s needs, along with the implementation of healthy eating habits. I think it’s successful because we teach people to develop healthy eating habits, and empower them to make healthy food choices in order to maintain their weight-loss and live longer, healthier, happier lives.