Neda Varbanova is a certified health coach and recipe creator who believes that healthy eating, fitness and a positive outlook are the key to realizing true health. Neda’s food philosophy is inspired by her mother who has always prepared fresh daily meals with nothing short of simple, wholesome ingredients. When Neda arrived in New York during high school, she discovered that the American diet was lacking fresh foods and has been dedicated to inspiring others to incorporate healthy foods into their lives ever since. Neda is a certified health coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, has a certificate in Culinary Nutrition from the NaturalGourmet Institute and is enrolled in the Master’s Program in Food Studies at NYU Steinhardt.
What inspired you to become a health coach?
Since I can remember, I have always had an immense passion for health and nutrition. As a native of Bulgaria, I grew up in a household where my mother prepared meals for our family fresh daily with nothing short of simple, wholesome ingredients. No matter how busy she was, she made sure our entire family had healthy options readily available, even if that meant a quick salad or soup. So when I first moved to the United States, I was naturally shocked not only at the rising rates of type-2 diabetes and obesity this country faces, but the overall quality of food, specifically processed foods, that are accessible in this country. As silly as it may sound, I had never tried mac n cheese, or let alone heard of a “hot pocket.” This complete culture shock, influenced me to take initiative at my high school. It was there, where I initially began pursuing my passion of health and nutrition. I developed the school’s first health club and began integrating healthier options into the cafeteria. From working directly with the school to provide students with healthier alternatives, I realized my passion was to continue to provide health and nutrition education.
Fast forward years later and I had the opportunity to intern alongside Tanya Zuckerbrot MS, RD, nationally-known dietitian. This was a tremendous opportunity for me to better understand nutritional counseling and client relationships, which really inspired me to jump-start my passion into a profession. Shortly after, I became a certified Health Coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and currently I am getting my masters in Food Studies at NYU Steinhardt.
How has becoming a health coach changed your life?
On a personal level, I had spent years struggling with my relationship with food while managing the effects of IBS and severe bloating. I would crash diet, eat very little or avoid eating certain foods all together. With proper education, I have been able to enhance my understanding of nutrition and lead a more balanced and nutritious life. Eating healthy does not need to compromise taste, which is why I continue to develop healthier takes on popular recipes and implement them into my client’s food plans.
Along with offering nutritional advice, I guide people to create healthy lifestyle habits and achieve physical and psychological balance. In other words, I work with each of my clients individually to design the best health program suitable to meet their goals and own body chemistry. No two bodies are the same, so no two plans should be the same. Working directly with my clients, I can help cut through the clutter of fad diets and develop a personalized nutritional plan suitable to obtain each individual’s goals.
Are you ready to get Healthy with Nedi? Contact me today!