Our People in Profile: Dietitian Carissa Mattson says creating healthy food is all in the family
Carissa Mattson, dietitian at South Shore Regional Hospital, has always had a passion for good food. She brings that energy and enthusiasm for food to both her work and her home life.
Mattson works to support the nutrition of her clients, who range from infants to seniors.
She is a founding member of the South Shore Collaborative Breastfeeding Network, which provides feeding support for families by the right provider at the right time.
She also collaborates frequently with mental health services, cardiovascular health and the nutrition and food services team to promote healing through nutrition.
Her connection to good food is in her genes.
“From a young age, my comfort space has always been in a kitchen somewhere,” shared Mattson.
“I grew up going to my family’s restaurant after school where one grandmother was the owner and the other was a baker! My family values traditional recipes, handed down for generations and is usually made from memory – no ‘official’ recipes written with us!”
Today, as a mother of two children, ages three and six, she’s passing on that love of making and eating healthy food.
“I enjoy sharing my passion in the kitchen with them and getting them involved. My oldest especially loves to add ‘special ingredients’ to salads, which are usually berries he washes and cuts himself. My youngest loves to stir, press the start button on appliances, and get ingredients from the fridge and pantry! And, would you believe they argue over whose turn it is to spin the salad spinner! The best part of all is my husband does the dishes.”
Mattson knows from first-hand experience that these experiences of making and eating healthy food can have a life-long impact.
“Not only are we creating memories, I’m teaching them healthy eating and cooking skills to help them later in their lives.”