You are braver than you believe.
Stronger than you seem.
And smarter than you think.
-Winnie the Pooh
The heartfelt accounts that follow are from patients who have generously offered to share their personal inspirations. I commend them for the fortitude and hard work that enabled them to achieve their goals. I feel fortunate to have been a part of their journey. I hope their personal experiences will instill, motivate, exhilarate, empower, and inspire you to embark on your own journey toward a lifetime of good health!
Sophie Kamveris, RD
Maria Bella, MS, RD, CDN
Top Balance Nutrition
NYC and Miami
"I feel bloated and my pants don't fit today." That was the first sentence that came out of her mouth when I first met her. Love at first sight! I had long known Sophia's credentials – an educated leader in the field of nutrition with ample experience, but I realized then that she is also a relatable woman. We could be friends and I knew I could share anything with her without judgment. As we spent time together, my gut instinct proved to be right. Kindness radiates all around her. Her giving nature extends beyond her patient care. Super talented, mature, and wise, she goes above and beyond to cultivate a culture of giving and mentorship among other dietitians. Instead of creating a competitive environment, she supports us by sharing her wisdom when we ask questions to one another. Her thoughtful efforts help all of us learn and grow. One of a kind.
-Thanks, Maria-love you too!
Sophie is such a pleasure to work with-she is caring, patient, communicative, and so knowledgable. She made me feel at ease from the start, and has great insight and practical suggestions. I feel much better with her guidance on the low FODMAP diet for my IBS. I would encourage anyone looking to make positive changes to see Sophie!
-Isn't great to feel better with only diet changes and no meds!
After many years of not paying too much attention to the food I ate and not exercising much, my weight was 205 and my triglycerides were 380. I met with Sophia and she showed me how to eat right, again. I didn't even feel like I was on a diet! 4 months later, I'm down to 153 pounds, my triglycerides are down to 60, and I my life has become a more sporty and active experience. I am 31 years old and I'm down to my teenage weight! Thanks Sophia for your help in understanding that eating right doesn't mean starving yourself and that it is possible to reach a goal that seemed far from reality.
-No starving necessary! Common sense, compliments of Mother Nature!
You are a lifesaver!! Thank you so so much. You restore my faith in humanity with your willingness to help. You have yet to let me down!
-Awwwh! That makes me feel so good about what I do!
Thanks for all you have done......it sounds promising! Thanks for being so caring and thoughtful.
-The ball is in your court, Pete!
I've been working with Sophie for over two years and have lost nearly 70 pounds. More importantly, I've
learned to make better choices about what I eat and that's made it possible to stick with my routine.
-Peggy has lost 100 pounds!!! Congratulations, Peggy!
I weighed 210 pounds when I met Sophie in June of 2009. In our first meeting she took time to understand what, when, and how I eat and how much I exercised. A week later she gave me a diet blueprint—a calorie budget, a tool to plan my meals, and list of foods with their calorie content. She set up the budget so I’d meet my nutritional needs from a balanced diet. She also motivated me to exercise more.
I followed her guidance and adjusted my eating habits and exercise routines. We met periodically over a few months to review my progress. She really motivated me and gave me practical advice.
By January 2009, I reached my weight goal of 170 pounds, having lost 40 pounds in six months. She celebrated my achievement with me. I welcomed that because we had worked as a team to accomplish it.
I’ve already recommended Sophie to friends. I’d recommend her to anyone seriously interested in managing their weight to better health.
-I'm sure you will continue to excel, Greg! Fond memories of all of your tracking sheets!
Eric & Katie
Just wanted to let you know that I have followed your recommended nutritional guidelines. Katie and I are both eating much better and selecting all organic and nutrient dense foods-in addition to that we
have been cycling almost everyday. I have lost 8.6 lbs in 5 weeks and am feeling so much more energetic. In addition to your guidance, I have found the app 'Tap & Track' to be incredibly helpful in recording my caloric intake. Katie and I have also incorporated green super drinks into our daily routine adding either Macgrogreens or Vitamineral Greens to our daily smoothies and the energy boost is amazing! Drinking 2 liters of water per day has also had beneficial effects on my eczema...the eczema on my arm is nearly gone and its amazing as I've been struggling with it for years. I believe the water consumption is helping in keeping my skin hydrated and less irritated.
Thanks again for jump-starting us on the road of health!
-Always a little easier to do it with a buddy for the daily support!
I got sick about two and a half years ago and ended up having to have an operation to remove part of my colon. After having the operation, I developed IBS, which caused me to go from 135 pounds to 106 pounds. I was in really bad shape with constant pains in my stomach and other problems.
My GP sent me to Sophia. She was my lifesaver, helping me to get on food that would not bother my stomach, and also helping me gain back weight. I am now at 125 pounds, which is the result of Sophia’s help.
Sophia and I keep in touch via e-mail and she is always ready to help me out, with whatever question I have.
I know there are a lot of people out there who want to lose weight, but on the other hand there are people like me who need to gain. Without Sophia’s help I really don’t know at what stage I would be. So, here’s to Sophia a kind, caring, and helpful person.
-Barry, it's always nice to see you pop up in my office!
My first meeting with Sophie was in November 2008. I was newly diabetic, had hypertension and high cholesterol, was about 80 pounds overweight, and walking was exhausting. On Thanksgiving 2009, I ran a 5-mile road race in one hour and 34 minutes!! In addition, I was 60 pounds lighter, and all of my medical conditions were in solid control.
What a year! Indeed, I felt ready to finally take charge of my life and health, however my issues and needs were so overwhelming that I could have never dug myself out of my very deep hole without the gentle, optimistic, realistic, compassion, and understanding of Sophie. There wasn't a thing I could tell her about my awful eating habits that surprised her or elicited any judgment; something I think most overweight people fear. Sophie knows when to teach, when to listen, when to encourage, and is always steadfast in her confidence that I can succeed.
I have more challenges ahead, but for the first time in decades, I know that I have a teacher who will see me through to graduation! I am so grateful.
-I still smile about the skirt story you shared with me! A great anecdote for a future book, perhaps! -Sophie
My story starts back in February of 2009. I was 24 years old, 5’2” and weighed about 155 pounds. I decided to begin counting calories in order to lose a bit of weight and get back in better shape. I became obsessed with counting calories and cut out many foods that were healthy because they were too caloric. In February of 2010, I dipped to about 100 pounds. I had low iron levels, low energy, and generally felt exhausted. I knew I looked sick, but I struggled to break my habits and mindset.
With encouragement from my friends and family, I sought out help. I met with Sophie in February. She immediately got to know me. We walked through my daily schedule of eating and working out. She asked what I liked to eat and showed me her favorite brands for products, which I enjoyed. With each meal we discussed, she gave me realistic and easy ideas on how to add in some more healthy calories. She helped me to set realistic goals in order to bump my calories and return to a better weight. Throughout the whole appointment, I felt completely relaxed and comfortable. I could tell Sophie understood the difficult journey ahead of me and she was not assuming it would be an easy fix. When I left, I had a grocery list of foods to pick up and new recipes to try. I also had an informal eating plan to help me on my way.
From there, I started to make changes slowly. Sophie continued to email me and follow up to see how I was doing. She even got in touch with my doctor to follow up with her.
Currently in July 2010, I have reached a healthy weight and more importantly, my mindset has changed on how I see food and nutrients. I only had one appointment with Sophie, but the knowledge she gave me has stayed with me. It is rare to find a practitioner who is so invested in their patients on a personal basis. She supported me emotionally and physically and I am so thankful to her for that.
-Very sweet sentiment, Kara!
Carolyn Z’s “Poem-onial”
Sophie Kamveris, my savior in nutrition
Is helping me get my body in condition.
She is brilliant and caring, a pro with compassion
And being judgmental is just not her fashion.
She is always there for us when we crave her advice
It would be an understatement to simply say she is nice.
She inspires me to succeed but is calming and gentle
She understands the physical but also the mental.
I am grateful that my doctor referred me to Sophie
And for that I would say she deserves a big trophy.
On a serious note, I hope I do well
By my next Sophie-Session, we should be able to tell.
I will do my best and stick to the plan
If anyone can coach me, I know Sophie can.
So without further ado, I will end this little ditty
Which I hope she doesn't think is more silly than witty.
Is there a message in this verse that I wrote tonight?
I think "Saved-by-Sophie" sounds so cool and so right!
-How cool is that creation?! Thanks, Carolyn!
When I visited my doctor for the “annual physical,” he reminded me (for the 5th consecutive year) that it would do me a lot of good to lose some weight and assured me I could do this by eating healthier and taking better care of myself. My instant response was that I do take great care and am careful of what I eat; so I thought. Of course, he had heard it all before and paid little attention to my reasoning. He did not give me a specific goal amount to lose, but I could tell he was serious.
The next few weeks, I was 110% committed to eating right. I also stepped up my workouts to 3-4 days per week instead of the 1-2 on “average.” There were positive results very quickly. Within 4 weeks, I had dropped 10 pounds and was feeling great about myself. No one could tell that I was dropping pounds, but my clothes fit better and I was sleeping better. With a self-imposed goal of losing 20 pounds, and taking better care of myself overall, I stepped up the pace of workouts. However, over the next few weeks there was very little progress as far as weight loss. Severe frustration set in and I began losing motivation. That’s when I called my doctor and was referred immediately to Sophie.
My lifestyle is not the best for taking great care. I travel a lot for business, I am an early riser (5AM), and tend to not eat until at least lunchtime. Because of my extreme hunger, I tend to make very poor choices. Same with dinner; if I do skip lunch there are days when I don’t eat until dinner and look out! I am not bad at what I eat with the types of foods, but certainly the quantity gets me in trouble. Breadsticks, cheese and crackers, rolls, and anything else served as an appetizer falls victim to my hunger.
The first meeting with Sophie was enlightening, to say the least. I went into the initial consultation thinking that I knew as much as anyone and wondering why I had agreed to meet. I had read all the books and articles on what to eat and what not to eat. I knew the basics about not eating too late in the evening and staying away from snacking after dinner (a real downfall of mine). After that initial hour, I had learned so much that I was sure this next phase of my weight lose would be easy and sustainable. Sophie listened intently to my day-to-day schedule, lifestyle, motivation level, and my knowledge on the nutritional benefits of food and drink. She read me like a book and the entire time we were together she processed each and every habit and was providing thoughtful and simple potential solutions. At no time in the discussion did I feel this was going to be impossible. Sophie brought simple, attainable answers to my situation.
At the meetings with Sophie it was never about losing weight; it was, however, about making the right choices and understanding what size and shape those come in. It was apparent that I did not understand all there is to know about this subject and had much to learn. Within a few days of my first meeting I was provided a very detailed recap of all we discussed along with a meal plan of many varieties of foods that were simple to find in my travels, as well as a regimen of when to eat. There was a clear path laid out for me that was well within my timelines, schedule, and “on the go” lifestyle.
It’s been 12 months since we’ve first met and I am happy to say I am feeling great and have finally broken down and bought new clothes. Yes there are days and weeks where I may not have followed Sophie’s guide but it’s so very simple to jump back into the fold due to the realistic guidelines we have set.
Needless to say, I am a big fan of Sophie. Her approach to my “Type A” personality was perfect. She is a true professional in every manner and cares very much about her “students.”
Good luck to all of us who wish for better will-power in understanding how to approach each and every day; from the moment you wake up to the end of a long day, you will be prepared to handle yourself in every situation. I hope you, too, make the right choices!
Thanks, John! Great advice to share with others. Enjoy the new wardrobe!