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KGK Staff Profile: Registered Dietitian, Nicole Clouthier

It’s officially Nutrition Month so our first KGK staff profile is our new in-house registered dietitian, Nicole Clouthier.  Learn about Nicole and her favourite buttery chicken recipe!

Hey Nicole, thanks for taking the time to talk. Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you become a dietitian?

Nicole Clouthier: When I was young, I always loved food, baking (and eating!) and so after college I worked as a chef for 10 years in London, Toronto, and Vancouver.

It was while working as a chef that I became more interested in food science, so I went back to school for a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Food & Nutrition.

Why did you choose to come to KGK Science?

Nicole Clouthier: It is the clinical setting at KGK that really excites me! We dietitians work in an evidence-based profession within a relatively young branch of science, so working within this context helps drive credibility for the specialization while progressing the science of nutrition.

What’s the difference between a dietitian and a nutritionist?

Nicole Clouthier: A dietitian is a regulated health professional (in Ontario we are regulated by the College of Dietitians of Ontario) and considered experts in nutrition due to the stringent training we receive.

We must complete a 4-year degree, a one-year internship, and finally write and pass a national licensing exam. In Canada, this is called the Canadian Dietetic Registration Exam (CDRE).

The title nutritionist is not a protected title in Ontario (it is in Alberta, Quebec and Nova Scotia) – anyone can call themselves a nutritionist. This is not to say that all nutritionists are not qualified to make sound nutritional advice, it’s just not regulated.

Why does KGK benefit from having a dietitian?

Nicole Clouthier: Having a dietitian on staff allows KGK to fully adhere to protocols and drive high-quality results, plus I am available to our participants to answer their nutrition questions.

Our current ketogenic diet study is a great example. I can sit down to tailor the diet to the participants’ needs – determine energy requirements based on age, gender, weight, height and physical activity—in order to calculate personal macronutrient targets. I’ll also review weekly food diaries, email participants on a weekly basis, and provide positive encouragement for successes. The encouragement piece is important because the keto study lasts five months – even if that means sending me four emails per day 😊.

And how about your favourite keto recipe – care to share that with us?

Nicole Clouthier: I don’t have a specific recipe, but I love comfort foods like roasted chicken. Maximizing fat intake while following a keto diet is important and this can be accomplished by adding extra fat to keto-friendly foods. Make your roast chicken extra flavorful and juicy by making a quick compound butter and stuffing it under the chicken skin before roasting. Play around with different herbs and spices depending on your taste. This butter is also delicious melted on a freshly grilled steak or keto-friendly vegetables.

Compound Butter

½ cup unsalted butter, softened

1 tsp lemon juice

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp black pepper

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons freshly chopped herbs (parsley, basil, thyme and sage are great)

Dash hot sauce

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well to combine
  2. Place the butter on a piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper and roll into a log
  3. Chill the butter in the fridge until it is firm
  4. Slice into rounds and enjoy!