Meet Pendulum Dietitian Kristin Neusel
Learn more about what you can expect during nutrition consultations with her.
In honor of National Nutrition Month, we wanted to introduce you to our Pendulum Dietitian Kristin Neusel. She is dedicated to helping others through research-based nutritional advocacy and providing realistic recommendations for every lifestyle and state of health.
You can find her here on our blog through the “Ask the Dietitian” series or be in direct contact with her via the complimentary nutrition consultations that we provide with your purchase of Pendulum Glucose Control.
Learn about her nutrition philosophy (she’s carb-positive!), what you can expect during a nutrition consultation with her, and more below.
Tell me a little about yourself!
Hi guys! I’m Kristin Neusel, and I’m a registered dietitian (RD for short) and certified diabetes care and education specialist. I’ve completed both my Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in Human Nutrition and Dietetics. I’m passionate about all things nutrition, fitness, and sports. I live with my husband and my dog Nala (she's a little Yorkie). I love to play soccer, basketball and run in my free time.
Why did you decide to become an RD?
Back when I was a junior in high school, I watched the movie Super Size Me and it made such an impact on me. I didn't grow up in a super-healthy house, so I started reading labels and being very aware of what I was putting into my body. My love of health and nutrition coupled with my passion for helping people made the decision to become a dietitian easy! I absolutely love empowering and educating people to make the best nutritional choices for them, and finding an eating style that works for their lifestyle. It is so rewarding when people start to see results and reach their health and nutrition goals. This is why I do what I do; I have such a passion for helping people and I care very much about each and every person I help!
What is an RD, exactly?
In simple terms, RDs know how to apply nutrition to help treat and prevent disease. They also must pass a national exam before becoming a Registered Dietitian. By law, only RDs can provide medical nutrition therapy, which is diabetes nutrition education.
As an RD, I went through four years of undergraduate studies and dietetics. I was then matched to an internship at a healthcare practice or hospital. I ended up being accepted into a dual combined program to complete a Master's degree along with an internship.
Through the internship, I engaged with the community in a variety of different settings and learned how to apply my knowledge to the real world. In addition, I completed and passed the national exam to become an RD. I continue to educate myself through continuing educational courses and being an active member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. I've taken many diabetes-focused courses and also passed the Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist exam.
What are your general nutritional recommendations for people with type 2 diabetes (T2D)?
I think that that really varies from person to person, but overall, don't be afraid of carbs. Sugar alone doesn’t cause diabetes. That's a very common misconception. Most of the people I speak with who have T2D are very afraid of carbs; however, your body does need them. That said, it’s important to get your carbs from fiber sources that help slow the rate of glucose absorption.
I also generally recommend the plate method, where half of your plate should be fruits and vegetables, a quarter should be lean protein, and a quarter should be whole grains. This is a great, simpler method than carbohydrate counting.
What is the benefit of having consultations with you in addition to using PGC?By scheduling a consultation with me, you'll get:
- Access to your own registered dietitian and certified diabetes care and education specialist
- A personal nutrition analysis
- Personalized meal planning and key nutrition tips, tricks, and recommendations for your current health status and lifestyle
- Research-based answers to all of your nutrition, microbiome, and diabetes questions
I also want to highlight that our focus on gut microbiome health and the role it plays in the progression of type 2 diabetes based on clinical studies and decades of research. You won’t get that perspective or data from any other type 2 diabetes program out there.
How many nutrition consultations will I get?
You'll get an initial nutrition consultation which usually lasts about an hour, sometimes a bit more depending on what you’d like to discuss. From there, I’ll be checking in with you every two to four weeks (again, totally based on your needs). I'm fully dedicated to guiding and supporting you throughout your whole journey.
What’s your general philosophy on nutrition?
My general nutrition philosophy is that it should be about adding, not subtracting, foods. As an RD, I’m here to help you meet your health and wellness goals in realistic, simple ways that don’t feel restrictive.
I’m also pro-carbohydrates (surprise!). Every person has three macronutrient needs: fat, protein, and carbs. Each has its role in the body in terms of how they're metabolized and for what they’re used. So when you see a “diet” that takes away any macronutrient or food group, that should be a red flag because your body does need every macronutrient.
Whenever you take carbs out of your diet, you're getting your energy from fat and protein. When fat is used as energy, it turns into ketones, which can lead to ketosis. Ketosis can cause dehydration and a chemical balance within your body; not great long term. When protein is used as energy, it isn’t able to be used for building muscle and connective tissue.
You might experience weight loss, but a carb-free diet is not healthy or sustainable long-term. Studies of long-term low-carb diets have shown an increased risk of deaths due to cardiovascular disease, cerebrovascular disease, and cancer. Lastly, a lot of carbohydrate-rich foods, like whole grains, have essential nutrients like B vitamins that you might not be getting enough of from protein or fat-filled foods.
What’s a nutrition myth that you’d love to bust?
There are a lot of nutrition myths that I would love to bust! The one I'll mention right now is the belief that eating late at night one causes weight gain. If you look at different cultures, like in France, it's common to eat dinner at 9:00 p.m. every single night before going to bed right after. And when you look at obesity rates, theirs is much lower than here in the US. There’s no data to show a direct correlation between eating later and weight gain.
I love to snack at night, but I make sure to eat healthier things. Rather than overindulging in processed sweets, I'll have fruit or nuts. Sticking to something lighter and smaller portion sizes later in the evening is key.
What’s your favorite thing in the world to eat?
If I could live on one food forever, it would be potatoes prepared in any style (especially hash browns). Potatoes actually have a lot of fiber and are a good source of potassium. Everything in moderation!