New HAWC dietitian nutritionist plans to help people live healthier

  • Published
  • By Holly Logan-Arrington
  • Robins Public Affairs
Marita Radloff, the Health and Wellness Center's new registered dietitian nutritionist, realizes she has some big shoes to fill, but she's ready to meet the challenge.

Radloff, who took the job in early December after previous HAWC dietitian nutritionist, Dani Lebovitz, moved on, said she has great plans for Robins Air Force Base.

"I plan to offer more commissary tours at different times of day in order to accommodate different schedules," she said. "It's hard to navigate a grocery store when you don't know what's healthy and what's not; so reaching more people in the aisles is a goal of mine."

Radloff said she'd also like to start a meal planning class that would introduce people to the concept of meal planning to save time and money. 

"Dietitians get a bad rap for being the food police; but I love ice cream and burgers just as much as the next person," she said. "If you told me I couldn't eat cake ever again, I wouldn't be a pleasant person to live with. When people make New Year's resolutions, they tend to make it too strict and that isn't a way to live."

Radloff said she encourages people to create a lifestyle instead of following a certain diet, and that includes making room for your favorite foods.

"In the Better Body Better Life Program that starts Jan. 11, we teach you how to master your metabolism, find healthy foods you love, and increase physical activity for a healthier life, not just until Feb. 1 when your resolution dies," she said.

Often, people's pursuit of a healthier lifestyle gets derailed by conflicting studies that give confusing messages concerning nutrition and fitness. 

"I think knowing the basics of nutrition and only listening to the studies that rely on causation and not correlation is imperative for health," she said. "Educating people about how to lose weight safely and helping them make their favorite dishes healthier is my top goal as a dietitian."

Radloff aims to decrease the prevalence of obesity and excess weight in the base community in 2016.

The Better Body Better Life Program is a 12-week education and workout program that offers one nutrition education class on Mondays, and workout Tuesdays and Thursdays.

"This is a multifaceted approach to weight loss," she said. "You learn about nutrition and find ways to move your body so that you don't get bored or tired of eating the same thing every day." 

The BBBL program will run Jan 11-Mar 31.

The Performance Nutrition class, which covers metabolism, pre-and post-exercise eats, and supplements, is offered twice a month.

Radloff said the class is required in order to have a Bod Pod session, a body composition tool available to active duty military. Other HAWC classes include Diabetes Self-Management, Healthy Pregnancy, and Commissary Tours.

The military spouse said she's looking forward to working with people who are truly passionate about making long-lasting changes in their lives, and helping them use HAWC programs make it possible.