Mascha Davis, MPH, RDN, came to the United States at seven years old as a political refugee. Today, she is a TEDx speaker, humanitarian, and a highly-decorated registered dietitian nutritionist, working to share her unique approach to nutrition and transform the health of those around her. We sat down with Mascha for this week’s FFF to learn more about her journey to getting here.
My family immigrated to the United States from Ukraine as political refugees when I was seven years old. I didn’t speak a word of English! My family came with almost nothing, and we moved constantly for the first few years. Overcoming these challenges taught me resilience. As I grew older, it also instilled in me the true meaning of gratitude as I realized that just by virtue of coming to the U.S., I was given opportunities that many people are not fortunate enough to have. I felt tremendously lucky, and also discovered a sense of purpose: a strong desire to make a difference and give back. After enrolling at the University of WI-Madison, I discovered my true passion: nutrition. As I began my journey of becoming a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), I started on a path of discovery of what it means to be truly healthy and to help others. After completing my undergraduate studies in Nutritional Science & Dietetics, I went on to obtain my Master of Public Health degree at UCLA, and to complete my accredited dietetic internship at the VA Hospital in Los Angeles. Since then, my career has taken me all over the world: Europe, throughout the U.S., and Africa. In 2016, I gave a TEDx talk about my international humanitarian work in Africa, where I spent five years working on programs for the treatment and prevention of malnutrition in women and children. My book Eat Your Vitamins, with publisher Simon & Schuster, was released in January 2020. My experiences as an entrepreneur, political refugee, and humanitarian has given me a unique perspective and inspired a passion sustainability and the environment, and to continue helping people improve their health and the health of our planet through nutrition.
First, recognize that it’s absolutely possible to eat healthy on a budget! Cooking at home, meal prepping, and buying foods locally and in bulk are all key money saving strategies.
I would be the Apple + Fig Fruit Bar! It’s so perfectly sweet, chewy and delicious. I’m obsessed!