Back to school: Mom and new business owner wants to help kids eat better


By Sophie Pappas

2692403383_4851716b8e_zDawn Parker knows a thing or two about food, and as a certified health coach, her passion is sharing that knowledge with everyone she meets.

“Having worked in the health care field for over 15 years, the more I learned about how our health care system works, and its shortcomings, the more I felt drawn towards nutrition as the solution,” Parker said. “I learned about issues with our food supply that shocked me and how to improve the way my family eats. I learned how to use food as medicine and went from someone who caught every cold, flu or virus that went around to someone who hasn’t caught even a cold in almost three years. And I owe this turnaround to knowing and utilizing the power of nutrition.”

Parker was trained at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, where she learned hundreds of theories in healthy eating. Now, she is on the cusp of opening her first Zionsville business to help guide people in their search for the most balanced lifestyle.

“Having worked one-on-one with clients for over a year now, I am opening this new office to expand my practice. I will continue to focus on working with clients one-on-one, as well as increase my ability to work with couples and groups,” she said.

Parker, herself the mother of picky eaters, said she has honed her own cooking skills, and knows exactly how to help families integrate good foods into their children’s diets.

“[My cooking skills] were pretty average to start, and now I know how to make truly healthy food taste delicious, even by my kids’ picky standards,” she said. “Knowing how much this knowledge has meant for me and my family, I want to share that knowledge with everyone I can. I am especially passionate about working with women and moms because I feel that teaching our children how to eat well and be healthy is one of the most important gifts we can give them.”

To kick off the new business and the new school year, Parker is offering free, 15-minute consultations for anyone from Aug. 13 through the end of September. To make an appointment with Parker, email Her office is at 1555 West Oak Street, Suite 10, in Zionsville.

Recommended snacks

Parker recommends parents offer their kids a “buffet” of veggies to try at mealtimes. This means, putting a few pieces of several different veggies on a fun tray or plate and allow the child to pick and choose what they want to try and snack on. Parker said some good veggies for doing this with are:

  • Cucumbers
  • Sliced bell peppers
  • Celery
  • Baby spinach
  • Carrots
  • Grape or cherry tomatoes
  • Sugar snap peas

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