Social media is brimming with nutrition advice. But not all of the information is useful—or even safe. Dancers hoping to pick up health-boosting tips on Instagram and other platforms need to make sure they're listening to the right voices. To help you curate your feed, Dance Magazine asked three experts to shout out a few Instagram accounts they feel dancers can trust.
Val Schonberg, MS, RD, CSSD, LD: @v.schonbergrd
"Because dancers are often concerned about weight, they may be drawn to social media accounts that promote a certain aesthetic," rather than focusing on health, says Val Schonberg, a consulting dietitian for Atlanta Ballet. She says to be wary of self-proclaimed "experts" sharing their personal experiences. Instead, seek out information that acknowledges that individuals have personalized nutrition needs. These three accounts fit the bill:
Dr. Nicky Keay, @nickyKfitness: Schonberg recommends Dr. Keay as a leader in the dance medicine, science and research communities.
Rebecca McConville, MS, RD, LD, CSSD, CEDRD, @rebeccaeddietitian: "Rebecca shares valuable information about nutrition for injury prevention and preventing low energy availability," Schonberg says.
Rachel Fine, MS, RD, CSSD, CDN, @tothepointenutrition: "Rachel's social media is tailored specifically to dancers. She encourages adequate fueling while challenging diet culture messages."
Monika Saigal, MS, RD, CEDRD-S, CDN: @nourish.headtopointe
"Look for people qualified to give nutrition recommendations," says Monika Saigal, who provides nutrition counseling to dancers in New York City, including at The Juilliard School. In the U.S., you'll often see the letters "RD" (registered dietitian) or "RDN" (registered dietitian nutritionist); certifications will differ in other countries. Saigal's favorite nutrition-focused accounts share info tailored to dancers' needs and favor a non-diet approach:
DDD Centre for Recovery, @ddd_centre_for_recovery: "I love their focus on the importance of diversity and inclusion in dance," Saigal says.
Dr. Stephanie Potreck, @ausdancersoverseas: "I appreciate her focus on debunking common and harmful misconceptions related to dance nutrition and health."
Alexia de Macar, PhD, @alexia_performancenutrition: "A nice mix of sports nutrition and addressing eating disorders/disordered eating."
Sherry Lin, MFA, RDN, LDN: @thehiphopdietitian
Chicago-based dance educator and dietitian Sherry Lin suggests asking questions like "Is this account inclusive of all body types, sizes and abilities? Does the account promote strength, longevity, body positivity and mindfulness? Does it amplify diverse voices and cultures?" She recommends these five BIPOC dietitians:
Aja Gyimah, MHSc, RD, @compete.nutrition: Lin likes this account's "focus on intuitive eating rather than weight gain/loss for athletes."
Shana Minei Spence, MS, RDN, CDN, @thenutritiontea: Spence also offers a non-diet approach and promotes health at every size.
Tiffany Ma, RDN, @tiffanyma_rdn: Ma offers a non-diet, holistic approach to wellness.
Taylor Chan, MS, RD, @foodandfearless: Chan's account combines artistry with her knowledge as both a dietitian and a personal trainer.
Watch out for social media accounts that:
• Emphasize rigid food rules or encourage restrictive eating.
• Deliver an "Eat like me, look like me" approach.
• Promote certain food brands, herbal supplements or weight-loss systems—especially when those posts are sponsored.
• Label foods as "good" or "bad."