Last Thursday was a big day. We had somewhat of a "coming out" party for dailyServing to Chicago dietitians. It was truly the big reveal. I'm still recovering.
For the past few months, we've been working hard on formulating our product line to get the nutrition information to a place that we're all proud of - and truly is "dietitian-approved". Of course, nothing is perfect, and "is it healthy?" can be a question without an easy answer. But this is a darn good product that I was proud to share with my colleagues.
While I continue to stand by my statement that dietitians are not the food police, dietitians are tough critics. This is a good thing. We are the keepers of nutrition science, we evaluate the latest research, we have been trained to see through the bullsh*t of advertising, clever marketing ploys, and simplified soundbites. So when someone tries to sell us on the newest, trendiest or "miracle" product, we have a few questions!
Because you know what? We have a deep responsibility to public health. It is truly our job to make people healthier through food. We should be tough critics of food in the marketplace. We should push for better policy. It can be easy to get a little jaded, when patients ignore your recommendations, or when you see that Dr Oz has street cred with your Facebook friends. When arguments over food philosophy pits professionals against each other, and when the arrogance of opinions is suffocating. But we really agree on so much more than we disagree on, and we are collectively fighting for our profession and the health of our country.
Oops. That got a little soap box-y. That happens.
As I said, dietitians can be tough critics. But we're also amazingly supportive of each other. So as we got closer to the event, I oscillated between childlike joy and utter paralyzing fear. I felt like a middle schooler throwing a party. What if no one comes? I can't wait! What if everyone comes? It's going to be so fun! What if they don't like me? I love parties! What if I embarrass myself? Let's do this! What if it's really awesome, and I can't live up to the reputation I create??
Guys, it was ridiculous. Generally speaking, I'm a confident, 30-something who can hold her own. My general approach to popularity contests and insecurities is "Ain't nobody got time for that." But I was requiring a pep talk about once an hour. Ask my husband. He deserves a medal for living through my crazy.
Then there was the snow. It started the night before the party, and kept on coming until about 2pm that day. This is Chicago, and people know how to winter here, but still. I started getting weather-related cancellations. Enter fear and trembling.
But of course, as soon as things started it was an amazing event. Our team transformed our open-concept office space into a super classy party, complete with food from Rogue catering, signature cocktails using our juices, and a sampling station. I was super impressed with the skills of my co-workers. [No one has every confused me for someone with high fashion or design abilities.]
We had about 40 Chicago dietitians and a few close friends of the company attend. There was so much energy and excitement over the product. I had the chance to share about the company and about my involvement. For those of you who know me, you know how much I love public speaking and sharing with groups. This is the stuff that gets me pumped. I got a few hard-hitting questions that were quite thoughtful, and a few dietitians who left just as excited as I was.
A few of my favorite quotes from the responses that I got from dietitians about the product line:
" I adore this functional foods product. Food is a powerful medicine ."
"I love that I know every ingredient in the product and most of them I can count with just one hand. I love the encouragement of whole foods and the pairing of snacks."
"I love everything about dailyServing! I love that dietitians are a huge part of the product.... I love the packaging and unique way to snack with a juice and a snack mix. I love that the snacks are nontraditional and that each ingredient has a purpose."
Many thanks to all who came out and braved the cold and snow. I loved getting a chance to show off all of our new flavors! If you're in the Chicago area, look for them in the coming week or so. I can't wait for more events to continue to share this with Chicago - and hopefully the rest of the country, in the near future :)