I’m Mary. I specialize in treating eating disorders, stopping the cycle of dieting and helping people find peace with food.
I know that each person’s relationship with food and their body can be tricky. Food can serve different functions to different people. So can the sensations of hunger and fullness. Sometimes they can be scary, anxiety or guilt provoking, soothing or a means of comfort and disconnection. I also know that ultimately, it’s not about the food; it’s about the intention.
I use an intuitive eating approach and all of my treatment is based in an all-foods-fit and all-bodies-fit, Health at Every Size, philosophy. I will not give you a list foods to cut out of your life or tell you deprive yourself of the foods you love. Instead, I’ll help you tune in to your body’s language and work to find peace with food. That said, I recognize that disordered eating, food judgements and weight preoccupation can make it difficult, and at times impossible, to nourish yourself according to intuitive cues. In many cases we will work with a structured meal plan as we work toward the ultimate goal of cue based eating. I’m here to help bridge this gap and work with you step by step to understand your unique needs, patterns and intentions in order to lay the foundation for a lifetime of more internally directed eating, free of food judgments, fears and weight preoccupation.
I often tell my clients that my hope for them is to be a part of the informed minority. To join those of us who have opted out of diet culture and have chosen to trust and appreciate the wisdom of the body. My goal is to help you gain increased trust and understanding of your body’s language so you can nourish yourself in a way that feels authentic and lends itself to a life in balance. We can reach this goal in a variety of ways, using structured meal planning when needed as we work toward attuned and internally directed eating. Helping others re-connect and learn to nourish themselves is one of my greatest joys. I can think of no greater honor than to help you or your loved one on the journey to attunement and recovery.
In addition to maintaining her out patient private practice, Mary is devoted to implementing gold standard treatment for eating disorders across levels of care. She is proud to be serving as the Director of Nutrition for the Norfolk, VA location of Prosperity Eating Disorders and Wellness for those needing intensive out patient and partial hospitalization levels of care in Hampton Roads. Mary also serves on the advisory board for Within Health, which provides one of a kind in home treatment for those struggling with eating disorders across the country.
Mary completed her masters degree and R.D. training in Public Health Nutrition at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Chapel Hill. During her graduate training she was selected to serve as campus nutritionist through Campus Health Services. She went on to do her clinical training at UNC Memorial Hospitals, and her public health training at the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) in the department of Infant and Young Child Feeding analyzing infant growth trajectories and feeding patterns.
Mary went on to serve as the lead dietitian for New York University’s (NYU) Student Health Center where she coordinated all eating disorder related dietetic needs of the university. She then established her private practice treating clients with eating disorders and disordered eating with offices in Manhattan and Brooklyn. During this time, Mary consulted for eating disorder treatment programs as well as numerous schools and universities throughout New York City and served as the first nutrition consultant for NYU’s Abu Dhabi campus, providing one-on-one counseling to students of the university, and advising faculty and staff on the assessment and treatment of eating disorders. Mary then took her experience to the residential, partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient levels of care, as the Director of Nutrition Services at the Oliver-Pyatt Centers for Eating Disorders in Miami, FL. Following many years of treating clients outside of her hometown of Virginia Beach, Mary is now providing expert eating disorder nutritional care to the Tidewater community.
Mary is a Certified Eating Disorders Registered Dietitian and Approved Supervisor (CEDRD-S) through the International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (iaedp) where she serves on the Mentoring and Connections Committee. She co-authored “The CEDRD in Eating Disorder Care”, March 2015, with fellow members of the Nutrition and Health Management Committee of iaedp. She is also an active member of the Eating Disorders Coalition for Advocacy, Policy and Action. Mary is a seasoned speaker and has conducted numerous workshops, trainings and seminars across the country focusing on body image, weight inclusivity, intuitive eating and the prevention and treatment of eating disorders.