Your Brilliant Career Podcast
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This podcast provides an injection of energy and practical insights to women who are committed to their career. I share tactics, tools and stories that inspire capable women to think bigger and unapologetically achieve the success they deserve.
One of my early realisations was that there are many unwritten rules about career success that no one tells you. Smart women are tired of generic career tips. They want accessible, relevant and practical tips. Each episode includes content that inspires women to step up in their career and experience the energy and reward of being more.
Your Brilliant Career is a podcast that aims to help more women rise and reach new heights in their career.
How often do you catch yourself feeling a bit guilty about indulging in that extra serving or not shedding those last stubborn kilos you've been eyeing? Maybe it was the temptation of the leftover muffin from the team morning tea that threw you off your game. Well, we've all been there, haven't we?
That desire to be at our peak health, performing at our best and looking and feeling good. I think it's universal. But let's face it, the path to good intentions and great practices is often paved with many challenges. And today I'm thrilled to bring someone onto the podcast who gets all of this. It is my friend and nutrition consultant, educator, and author, wearer of many hats, Kath Alleaume.
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Links we talked about on the podcast include:
RISE Accelerate program: https://www.yourbrilliantcareer.com.au/rise-accelerate
The Right Balance: https://therightbalance.com.au/
Jean Hailes: https://www.jeanhailes.org.au/
Australasian Menopause Society: https://www.menopause.org.au/
Health Direct: https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/
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[00:00:00] Gillian: How often do you catch yourself feeling a bit guilty about indulging in that extra serving or not shedding those last stubborn kilos you've been eyeing? Maybe it was the temptation of the leftover muffin from the team morning tea that threw you off your game. Well, we've all been there, haven't we?
[00:01:05] That desire to be at our peak health, performing at our best and looking and feeling good. I think it's universal. But let's face it, the path to good intentions and great practices is often paved with many challenges. And today I'm thrilled to bring someone onto the podcast who gets all of this. It is my friend and nutrition consultant, educator, and author, wearer of many hats, Kath Alleaume.
[00:01:35] Now Kath has had her own business for many years. She is famous for sharing health and nutritional insights in a very practical and friendly manner. So Kath is a trusted specialist in nutrition and fitness. She holds a degree in exercise science and a master's in nutrition. She works with brands such as Uncle Toby's as their nutrition ambassador. She founded The Right Balance 20 years ago to help women, men, and children overcome their health or performance issues. and maximise their wellness and fitness.
[00:02:11] There is plenty more in the bio, but I think it's always more interesting to hear about the guest's career experiences through their eyes and their own narrative. I first met Kath at a crucial juncture in my life when I was just starting my own business. Now that feels like, oh my gosh, an eternity ago now. But we always had a natural connection and she's such a stand out professional and brings so much passion to her work, but she's also a beautiful human being.
[00:02:40] She reached out to me about delivering a keynote for her. And naturally after one little chat, the idea of having Kath on the podcast sprouted and what better timing as we start a new year.
[00:02:54] All the indulging is winding back and it's kind of back to BAU. So I feel like it's a perfect time to reflect on health and create great habits. Kath is going to give you some very valuable perspectives on how to approach healthy eating and it's going to feel accessible, relevant, because that is her gift. So without further ado, let's dive into this conversation.
[00:03:20] Kath, welcome to the podcast. It is a pleasure to have you here.
[00:03:30] Kath: I know. It's good.
[00:03:32] Gillian: Well, Kath, I mentioned in my little intro but you've had your business for 20 years now, which is kind of hard to believe. But tell us what you do, like in your own words, Kath, tell us about your business and what you do.
[00:03:45] Kath: Well, I founded the company, over 20 years now. So it started out in private practice. So, you know, it was, you know, getting my head around seeing clients and working with them and, you know, helping them change their, their diet and their eating habits. And then eventually that grew into corporate nutrition. So I was running workshops in the corporate space and executives and then the communications really, I really had a flair for the communication side of things. So that's when I started kind of writing across many publications and, you know, really I guess simplifying my knowledge into many forms of, I guess, you know, whether it's features in many magazines or the workshops and the real focus now is doing professional development for dietitians.
[00:04:29] So I've really kind of done a 180 in my practice. I started from, you know, seeing individuals to then groups and then writing and now it's looking at the real experts and seeing what they've got to say and inviting dieticians to come in that space to upskill and, and get their professional points for that. So I'm really excited about that, actually.
[00:04:48] Gillian: I think that's fantastic. I mean, all industries and professions need to think about their own personal development. That makes huge sense. Now you've written this super book called, I just love the title actually, it’s just one of my fav titles, What's Eating You? And as per the title, it is about the psychology of eating.
[00:05:09] And my question is what motivated you to do this? Like, is it that you saw women really struggling with this emotional eating and stress? Like what was the experience that brought you to write a whole book about it?
[00:05:23] Kath: Hundred percent what you're saying. So what I figured just over the years in the practice, when I first started out is I actually came to realise that, you know, we don't just eat food. It's not just about the food. It's about the words. We eat words. We eat our words. We eat our circumstances too.
[00:05:40] So, and you know, it's constantly changing. Like we're going through life in different ebbs and flows. So, I really did feel that the majority of the times that the emotional side of eating was impacting women and the choices they were making. So that's why I titled the book like what is actually eating you?
[00:05:56] There’s so many times you can tell people and advise them, you know, what are the right things to eat? And we do have a certain level of knowledge of what's right and what's wrong, even though I don't like to label food good or bad, but it just came down to what was triggering their habits, and that really came down to that emotional level.
[00:06:13] So I really wanted to kind of unravel that. So, I guess that's kind of where the book was born. What's Eating You?
[00:06:19] Gillian: I mean, women are always talking about emotional eating, aren't they? Do you know what I mean? It's like that achilles heel. I'll just have the cheese and crackers. I've had such a bad day. I'll, you know, I deserve the chocolate or whatever it might be. But in the book, you talk about the power of mindfulness and you talk about other strategies to be more present with food. Like share a little bit with us about that because I'm sure there's plenty of listeners are thinking I'm an emotional eater, give me some tips. What would you say?
[00:06:49] Kath: I think mindfulness by definition is, is really just the practice of being fully present and aware of the present moment so, and that's without judgment as well. And like, like you mentioned the cheese and crackers, it's okay. You ate them, but it's about bouncing back and doing that gracefully. So not beating yourself up.
[00:07:08] So mindfulness is allowing you to help you be in that moment. It’s the power of the pause, basically. So it involves tuning into your thoughts, and your sensations and your surroundings and fostering that calm and non-reactive state. So it sounds really kind of, we need to live in the Himalayas, but we don't.
[00:07:25] It's just, it's some kind of muscle we do need to build over time. So, when it comes to mindful eating, this involves being fully present while you're consuming your food, of course. So that's paying attention to the senses and emotions and the physical cues. So you know, it's easier said than done, but it's as simple as, focusing on how many times you're chewing your food, for example, or big one women do… eating while distracted.
[00:07:49] I mean, we're huge multitaskers, right? But it's doing so many things at once and we're good at that. But when it comes to eating, I have to say, you do need to curve back a bit there and being really present while you're eating because that is going to do one thing. It's going to a) improve your digestion.
[00:08:04] It's going to help you feel satisfied. It's actually, you're actually going to say, actually, you know what? I'm actually full. It might help you portion control. It might help you snack less. I mean, these are things that are not all going to happen at once, but it's just going to happen over time.
[00:08:17] So it's just, yeah, being trying to be present in the moment and, you know, as simple as it sounds, it's something that we really need to cultivate self-awareness, basically.
[00:08:27] Gillian: I don't think you can reiterate that enough and I think in busy lives it's so easy to stand in the kitchen and not even be aware that you've knocked off four cheese and crackers because you're talking and you're on your feet and it's just all unfolded while you're summarising the drama of the day. Opposed to sitting down like, you know, that's a whole meal of calories, probably in that than sitting down and really enjoying the decadence of sitting down and having a meal.
[00:08:54] I just think that's such a beautiful message. Kath. What other tips? I think about our listeners and I mean, you're busier than me, Kath, cause you've got three little humans to look after. I've only got one huge adult kid at home. Who's a lot more low maintenance, but you're busy. You have a career. What are some of the things that help you to be organised? So you do stay on track and you're not defaulting to perhaps, unhealthy choices or just habits that don't support your well-being.
[00:09:26] Kath: Well, a lot of women would, would, you know, shutter at this word, but I think meal planning is, you know, as much as it's so, so boring and it's, you know, it sounds laborious, but let's just unpack that meal planning and try to make it as simple as possible. But it is gonna involve setting aside a little bit of time each week and you know, making a bit of a supermarket list and streamlining that shopping.
[00:09:46] So it's just as much as you can do that and set aside that little bit of time to set up your environment that’s conducive to your eating habits. You're just wanting to take that a little bit more of the guesswork out of your day or your week because, let's face it, we’re entering the new year now, and you know, we probably made some news resolutions. We set some new goals. A lot of those goals really need to align with your values and so if you're not valuing, you know your health, well, a lot of these things are going to fall to fears. So we really need to put health as women and self-care as our top priority. And, you know, we need to like do a little bit of back work in order to do that.
[00:10:23] So meal planning is really I think the key. So just sitting aside that time and as much as possible, just prep in advance, get your pantry sorted, decluttering, just getting some organisation into your, into your kitchen so you can actually make this process as seamless as possible.
[00:10:40] For example, one thing that I do is, you know, I've got three children and then they, they all are quite fussy, but I do say, okay, Tuesday we have themes, might be pasta night, one night it might be taco one night or pizza night. So I just know that my meals are based around that. And a couple of nights, it might be kind of, late night eating, or, you know, there could be some, you know, after sport things or whatever. So you kind of need to plan around that. So every night you're not kind of succumbing to Uber Eats, I guess.
[00:11:04] Gillian: Absolutely. I think the planning is a great role. And I know you and I have spoken about this before, but we love doing that still, you know, if we have a, we cook up things on the weekend, there'll be one of those meals will be for the week and the other half of it will go into the freezer for a couple of weeks later. And that happens with bolognese curries, chicken pies.
[00:11:26] But I think the point is, when you're tired and you're both landing at that same point and your children are about to eat you, you want to be organised and get things on the table quickly just to keep the peace in the family.
[00:11:39] Kath: It is such a loaded word, planning, but that does involve, like what you said, like you mentioned, batch cooking, so you might maybe cook up a big bulk and then freeze the leftovers, so you just know, like, that time is really tight, at least you've got backup, and the freezer is your huge friend when it comes to healthy eating. So just resorting to the freezer and just making sure you have a little bit of fresh produce in the actual fridge so you can just whip up, you know, just some roasted veggies or salads and just making healthy choices, easy choices.
[00:12:05] And that's my biggest motto when it comes to healthy eating. It's you know, we tend to label things, but it's just, how can we make this easy? And planning does go a long way, unfortunately.
[00:12:15] Gillian: Yeah. Yeah. I get that. And I think it's a great tip for the new year. Right. Do you know what I mean? Where we've got that little bit more enthusiasm and motivation really make more of an effort. What are some of your favourite tips in helping women try and set themselves up for success.
[00:12:30] Kath: Well, everyone's different. And again, I come back to the labelling of things. Like, I mean, we've, we've come a whole way of nutrition and I have to say just a side note, nutrition is actually a really young science. It's actually, you know, it's so young that it's ever-evolving. I mean, you just have to look in the media.
[00:12:45] One day carbs are good. One day carbs are bad. One day snacking's good. Next day snacking's bad. So intermittent fasting is all the rage right now. So every day we're going to be bombarded with different messages and it's what works for you. So not one diet suits all, it's what works for you. So if I had to have my, I'm not going to use the word rules. I'm not going to use the word diet. If I had to use some kind of tips or strategies, we all know at the end of the day, if it comes from nature, eat it. If it has a label, question it. And I think that's just a simple thing. There's nothing wrong with processed type snacks or whatever, but if it's got a long list of ingredients and the ingredients, you can't pronounce, perhaps just question that and maybe, you know, go for something from nature first. So there's nothing wrong with snacking as long as you're eating not, not as many processed foods. Another thing to be mindful of is we actually eat food, not nutrients. So you don't eat carbohydrates. You don't eat a protein and you don't eat a fat. You don't need a vitamin C. You actually eat food. And if you're eating as close to nature as possible, the nutrients look after themselves. So if you're eating lots of fruits and vegetables with no labels on it, you're getting a whole, whole heap of vitamins anyway. You've got a bit of carbs, a bit of protein.
[00:13:58] You don't have to really think about it too much. So eat food, not nutrients. That's important. And that kind of blends itself to supplements. Do we need as many? But if we're eating a balanced diet, probably not. If you're deficient in something, you probably need a supplement. My third point is to go for variety as much as possible.
[00:14:15] But again, again, the nature will look after itself with lots of colour in our diet, we're getting a whole heap of nutrients and lots of variety and antioxidants, etc. But that's it. So they're not rules. It's, you know, they're simplified terms. And I guess when it comes to what goals you have in your life, whether it's, you know, a bit of weight management or managing your moods or, you know, you're not sleeping well, this is when you need to assess how often you're eating, how hydrated you are and things like that. So I work with clients to kind of really not tell them what to eat. I really look at the whole picture, you know, really assessing your life, your, your busyness, you know, what you're doing and just really what works for you. Cause what works for you doesn't work for everybody else.
[00:14:56] Gillian: I love that philosophy of yours. I think it's great. And when you look at all the diets and things that are available on Instagram and the web, some of them are so cookie-cutter, aren't they? But how do you know that person doesn't go running for an hour and a half in the morning or has a completely different metabolism or those sorts of things, which brings me to my point, Kat, there is a lot of information out there.
[00:15:20] I feel like you can find information to back up any point of view if you look hard enough. So, what advice would you give? Is there a place where, you know, there is a trusted source of nutritional information?
[00:15:35] Kath: There's a lot of information out there and you know, Dr. Google is not always right, so just be careful in what you're searching. I mean, you know, you can open up Pandora’s box and become very worried about something you shouldn't be really worried about, but I think my advice there would be getting an actual good relationship with your doctor. And if that doctor is not working for you, find a good one. Find a one that you have a really good relationship that can refer you accordingly, because that's your real source there. Because you know your own body better than anybody. So having that good relationship with your doctor and making sure, you know, you're having the right you know, women's health provider, be it whether you're going through menopause and assessing whether you're taking HRT or whatever it may be.
[00:16:15] I think having a good doctor understands that area because there's a lot of specialists I guess that's specialise in certain fields, so making sure you're referred accordingly. But in terms of accessing information on the net, there are some really good websites. The one website I often refer to is the Jean Haile's website. And I can put the link in the show notes. They specialise in women's health and a lot of government websites too that are actually funded by the government actually put credible advice. But it just, if you're looking at certain people on Instagram and check out their credentials, are they really qualified?
[00:16:47] Because there's a lot of people that can do, you know, a very small course and call themselves a professional. I mean, to be fair, I'm not really an expert. I wouldn't call myself an expert. I don't have a PhD. I'm not a doctor in the field. They're the experts. So, someone who really specialises in, I've got general nutrition knowledge I'm university qualified, but again, looking at people's qualifications and, you know, making sure that what they say is evidence-based.
[00:17:12] The people who study certain areas of nutrition, be it menopause, be it the gut microbiome, be it chronic disease, diabetes, I mean, there's, there's people who really specialise in a certain field. So it's really important for you to understand like what it is your seeking and making sure that you've got, good advice being given to you.
[00:17:31] Gillian: Most definitely. Most definitely. Well, we always love your advice. Kat, though, just for the record. I, yeah, I feel like you're very well-read and very considered in the advice that you give to people and you keep it incredibly real. And I think that's so important because it's got to feel accessible and practical to pull it all off,
[00:17:50] But you're a pretty busy lady. You've got a lot going on as calm as you come across all the time. how do you support yourself? Cause you're not only supporting your family and your business, you've got all these other professional people, I imagine predominantly women as well in the professional sector that you're supporting. What are your strategies for looking after Kath?
[00:18:12] Kath: know, it comes down to what you value and you need to align your lifestyle according to your value. And if that, that's not aligned, well, then that's where you can, you know, fall down the kind of spiral of, I mean, like, I mean, I'm just relating this to many women that I've seen over the years, like, you know, dieting and fat dieting is because they don't really align health with the practices that they're undergoing on a daily basis. So once you, you value your health. So for me right now, sleep is a huge priority. It's not so much about what I'm eating. And I mean, I do regular exercise, but probably not doing as much as I should. But I'm not going to beat myself up about that for me right now with three children, still quite small and need me, I think sleep is priority for me, and I really focus on that pillar of health, like my four top pillars of sleep, nutrition, exercise and your mental health.
[00:19:00] So you might not be able to work on all of those pillars at once. I mean, if you can prioritise that, if you can, that's great. But I think coming up and make, again, making those strategies easy for yourself. Think about what's really important to you. So for, for me right now, it's sleep and making sure I'm getting, because without that sleep, I'm not able to have the energy to maybe meal prep or have the energy to go out and exercise because I do feel tired. So if I'm not tired, I feel like I've, I can make better decisions. So for me, sleep is priority. And then I'll work on, you know, eating well, you know, making sure the pantry is stocked and things like that.
[00:19:35] Particularly with this busy time of year and just scheduling time for exercise, like you would an appointment to go see a doctor. So, again, it's, it's what you prioritise and what you value.
[00:19:45] Gillian: Yeah. And the beginning of the year is such a great time to kind of pause and think about that. How do you want the year to look different when it comes to those four pillars?
[00:19:53] Kath: Absolutely.
[00:19:55] I think, you know, women, we tend to beat ourselves up a lot and it's putting that pressure and, you know, really putting that self-care on the back burner. But again, it's, it's just really taking, taking stock of you know, how you can just make, I think slow changes, the best changes, you know, not trying anything too drastic, not overhauling everything at once again, focus on something that you feel like you can make some changes and building those habits and then focus on the next thing until you really build that muscle to becomes an unconscious decision. Because when we do things unconsciously, it's just a habit we're not aware of. So, we want to make sure we're making positive changes and positive habits, but building those up.
[00:20:32] Gillian: Yeah, definitely. It is those little shifts and tweaks, isn't it? Constantly thinking about what new elements and things you can bring into your diet and habits. I should just say over that long period of time, just talking about wins over a long period, my brother, who has always carried extra weight has lost 30 kilos over the last two and a half years, and it's been life-changing for him. And he looks amazing. Absolutely amazing. But it is just through exactly what you just said. It's just those little, you know, consolidate the tweaks and that's exactly what he's done.
[00:21:08] It hasn't been arduous. It's just been a continuous consolidation of different habits and it's been such a wonderful outcome.
[00:21:17] Kath: Excellent. And he's able to sustain that. And that's the thing, like with those smaller tweaks, it's more sustainable in the long term. And that's what we want. I think we often find there's this quick fix and this quick pill and, you know, there's this magic thing that's going to transform us, but it doesn't work in the long term. And we find ourselves back to where we started, if not worse, sometimes. So it's that mindset tweak.
[00:21:39] Gillian: Yeah. So good. Kat. How do people find you? Share your details.
[00:21:44] Kath: You can head to my website www.therightbalance.com.au. And I am on Instagram, even though I'm not, really on there all the time, but I just think my website.
[00:21:52] Gillian: Well, we'll pop that in the show notes as well, but Cat, thank you so much. I feel like you've given us a beautiful selection of tips and inspiration to kick off the new year. And it's always so good chatting to you. So thank you for coming on the show. It's been wonderful.
[00:22:06] Kath: Pleasure.