Tara (Gidus) Collingwood, MS, RDN, CSSD, LDN
Tara is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition, fitness, and health promotion and is quoted in a variety of media including television, radio, newspapers, magazines, and websites. She is a past National Media Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND). Tara is the author of Pregnancy Cooking & Nutrition for Dummies (2012) and co-author of Flat Belly Cookbook for Dummies (2014). Tara was the co-host of Emotional Mojo, a national television show where she was the resident nutrition and health expert and shares the couch with therapist Jada Jackson and TV personality Michelle Yarn. Tara also appeared regularly as the “Diet Diva” on the national morning television show, The Daily Buzz from 2005 until the show’s cancellation in 2015.
Tara is currently the Team Dietitian for the Orlando Magic NBA team and Nutrition Consultant to University of Central Florida (UCF) Athletic Department. As the Official Nutritionist for runDisney, she offers nutrition tips to runners on the runDisney blog as well as at the EXPO for all Disney races. Tara was a health blogger and the Healthy Eating Expert on www.healthline.com for five years.
Tara owns Tara Gidus Nutrition Consulting in Orlando, FL. A dynamic speaker, she motivates groups large and small on various topics such as achieving a healthy weight, preventing disease, maximizing energy, aging well, enhancing sports performance, pregnancy nutrition, and creating a positive body image. Tara is a nutrition and movement performance coach at the prestigious Human Performance Institute where she teaches senior executives how to manage their energy.
As a consultant, she has worked with numerous companies including Walt Disney World, Rodale Publications, Tupperware, Canyon Ranch Spa, Rosen Hotels, United Behavioral Healthcare, and others. Tara has previous experience improving the diets of senior executives through her work with the Rippe Health Assessment at Florida Hospital Celebration Health. She has also overseen numerous weight loss research projects.
Tara graduated from Purdue University earning a Bachelor’s Degree with a double major of Dietetics and Nutrition, Fitness, and Health. She continued on at Purdue, earning a Master of Science Degree (MS) in Health Promotion, specializing in health behavior and worksite wellness programs. She is a Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist (RDN) with the Commission on Dietetic Registration and Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist (LDN) in the state of Florida. Tara holds a Board Certification as a Specialist in Sports Dietetics (CSSD). Tara was inducted into the Purdue University Alumni Hall of Fame in the School of Nutrition Science in 2013 for her many accomplishments in the field of nutrition.
Volunteering is something important to Tara as evidenced by her continued commitment to the Restoration Ministries for Women. For the past six years, Tara has been giving a lecture biweekly to a group of women who are on a six-month rehabilitation program after their release from prison. She teaches them how to eat right and exercise in order to feel their best to beat their addictions and get their lives on the right track. Tara has served as the Co-Chair of the Silent Auction for the American Cancer Society’s Orlando Chapter. She is a Past President of the Dietetic Association in Orlando and served as the Awards Chair for the Florida Dietetic Association. She has received numerous awards including the esteemed Recognized Young Dietitian of the Year from the Florida Dietetic Association.
Tara appears frequently as an expert on various television stations and shows including ivillage Live, Orlando NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox stations, Central Florida News 13, CW Network, Ivanhoe Broadcast News, and The Golf Channel. She has been quoted in over 1000 various print and online publications including the Associated Press, New York Times, and the Orlando Sentinel as well as various magazines including Women’s World, Self, Fitness, Shape, Women’s Health, Her Sports, Men’s Health, People, Vegetarian Times, Runner’s World, Club Business International, Cooking Light, Family Circle, Fit Pregnancy, American Baby, Prevention, and more. She has been quoted on various websites including webmd.com, ediets.com, aol.com, usnews.com, cnn.com, msnbc.com, and more. Tara is an avid runner and has completed nine marathons including the prestigious Boston Marathon as well as numerous half marathons and other races.
Tara tragically lost her husband Stephen Gidus to cancer in 2012. She found love again and married native South African John Collingwood in 2015. She is busy raising 4 boys: her two young sons, Basil (8 years) and Levi (6 years) and stepsons Maxim (12 years) and Samuel (10 years). Tara’s personal passion is staying fit and active (4 boys!) and loves running several marathons/half marathons as well as multiple 5K, 10K, and other distances each year. She and the family love to swim, paddle board, hang at the beach, hike, and do anything else that gets them outdoors and laughing with each other.