Alumna Crystal Kwan, MPH, RD won the second annual Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day contest

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From more than 200 thoughtful and inspirational testimonials from members that confirm and support the value of RDN services, the winner of the second annual Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day contest is Crystal Kwan, MPH, RD, of Pasadena, Calif.

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist who works with injured military veterans. My clients suffer from a debilitating mental illness that inhibits their ability to enjoy the taste of eating right. I help them to savor food, using mindful eating strategies incorporating all five senses. Before starting my program, clients would engage in binge-eating, while relying upon food as an emotional crutch. Today, my clients manage their own diets by continuously exploring a new range of delicious, heart-healthy foods. I applaud their progress and cheer them on, knowing that their enthusiasm for healthful eating is speeding up their recovery time from mental illness.

Crystal was featured on an electronic banner that appeared over New York City's Times Square on Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day – March 12 – and in Eat Right Weekly.

Before completing her dietetic internship at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Los Angeles, Crystal Kwan studied nutritional science at the University of California – Berkeley and earned a master’s degree in public health from UCLA. Ms. Kwan serves her community as a registered dietitian specializing in outpatient nutrition counseling. Her clients include patients of Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena and students attending the University of Southern California.

She is co-author of "Nutritional Counseling for Adults with Severe Mental Illness: Key Lessons Learned," to be published in the March Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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