When life gives you lemons, make lemonade, or so the saying goes. Nutritionist Justyna Kalka has done just that and then found other people to share the recipe with
When life gives you lemons, make lemonade, or so the saying goes. Nutritionist Justyna Kalka has done just that and then found other people to share the recipe with.
After her father died in a tragic accident when she was a teenager, Justyna lost her way. By the time her family had moved to Australia from Poland, she was battling eating disorders and related health issues. Thankfully she met a Hap Ki Do practitioner by chance in the park and started on the road to recovery through martial arts training, meditation and study.
“My journey into nutrition at Endeavour started from a need to help myself,” Justyna says. “Eating disorders had messed up my body and I was looking for professional guidance to heal it. I had really forgotten how I should be eating because I no longer knew what was normal. Back then I had no plans to be a nutritionist, but I started to apply what I learnt, and my whole life changed.”
Today, Justyna designs and delivers corporate health and wellbeing initiatives on behalf of Sano Health for clients including Australia Post, Origin Energy, REA Group, Roads and Maritime, Amcor and Qantas. She travels to workplaces around Australia delivering group workshops, educational presentations and conducting one-to-one clinical consultations. “As a teenager, I could never have imagined having the confidence to do this,” she says. “The best part is being able to reach individuals (like my previous self) who really need assistance, but who may never have sought it out.”
While Justyna started out in a clinic, it was when she added public speaking to her skillset that her nutrition career took off in a direction she had never anticipated. “English is my second language and I used to get very nervous talking in front of other people,” Justyna says. “One day listening to an inspiring speaker, I realised I could reach many more people if I got over my fear.”
Justyna finished an intensive short course in public speaking, without knowing where it would lead. Soon afterwards, Melbourne City Council offered her the opportunity to talk about nutrition at a health day. The presentation was so well received that it led to many other speaking opportunities. Justyna wound down her clinic to focus full-time on corporate health programs and public speaking opportunities.
These opportunities include work with ‘Beautiful Minds’, an organisation that helps teenage girls gain confidence and life skills. “It's rewarding to be able to share my experience and the knowledge I’ve gained about how diet affects our physical and mental wellbeing,” she says. “I wish I’d received this advice as a teenager, but then I wouldn’t be here today, doing what I love. My experience has given me a great passion to help others.”
Endeavour College of Natural Health is Australia's largest Higher Education provider of natural medicine courses.
The College is known as the centre of excellence for natural medicine and is respected for its internationally recognised academic teams and high calibre graduates. Endeavour offers Bachelor of Health Science degrees and Honours programs in Naturopathy, Nutritional and Dietetic Medicine, Acupuncture and Myotherapy, and a fully online Bachelor of Complementary Medicine.
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