January 23, 2024

Nutrition Influencer Insights: Q&A with upwaRD Winner Diana Mesa

How did you become passionate about nutrition communications?

Aside from the fact that I’ve always been passionate about communication in general, counseling people from diverse backgrounds really opened my eyes to the idea that a lot of the nutrition information people are receiving might not be the most culturally responsive, nor might it resonate with them in the way it was intended to. This was causing some confusion and even fear among the people I was working with and inspired me to take nutrition communications into my own hands in order to bridge that gap.

When you create your content, what personal rules or values help guide you?

I am a person who is driven by passion. This means that when I create content, the first thing it has to be is something I am passionate about. Then, it has to be something my audience resonates with. One question I always ask myself when sharing nutrition messages is, “Does this message capture the nuance of this nutrition concept?” Nutrition communications can sometimes be very black and white, and we know that nutrition happens in the “gray” space, where lots of context is needed. This can be hard to capture when generalizing nutrition messaging, and I always want to make sure that it is being communicated in a way that will not ultimately cause harm or become a hard-lined food rule for people.

What’s your favorite part of your job?

Picking favorites is always difficult for me because I love so many aspects of my career. Being able to help people understand nutrition and health information in a way that makes sense to them culturally is definitely number one. I also really love that I get to travel to different places, meet different people, and help change the way we talk about nutrition in the public health space to work toward more empowering nutrition communication and less fearmongering around food.

Where can people find you? 

What is your favorite food?

This is such a hard question to answer because my favorite food might change depending on my mood! I’ll have to give my top 3: sushi, pad see ew, or Cuban picadillo.


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