Roots Nutrition Consulting opens in downtown Mason City | Mason City and Northern Iowa

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Mason City has a new local nutritionist.

Roots is a nutrition counseling center located at 209 N. Federal Ave. which offers individual sessions tailored to an individual’s health needs. It provides body composition scales, individual meal planning and various cooking sessions. There’s also a take-out food station full of healthy and delicious options, says owner Jenn Pope.

Pope has been a dietitian for over three years. After working in outpatient services at MercyOne North Iowa Medical Center, Pope realized she wanted fewer restrictions on her services and retired on her own.

“I was seeing patients, I was teaching, but I wasn’t able to show them how to cook chicken, how to flavor vegetables. … That’s when Roots was born,” recalls Pope , “because I was like, how do you bring these two worlds together?”

Pope hopes to start cooking demonstrations in late June to teach people how to cook healthy food that tastes good. Pope plans to expand from there to launch interactive cooking classes and cooking parties for events like baby showers.

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For now, Pope is excited to start her journey by combining nutrition counseling with cooking, helping to bridge the gap between counseling and cooking. His advice centers around whole foods, and Pope plans to buy as much local food as possible for his classes.

Roots was the trade name chosen by Pope because of his approach to eating foods with roots, giving rooted and research-based evidence for proper nutrition and choosing to stay with his roots in Mason City where she grew up.

Pope came up with the idea for Roots in September, and after finding the perfect space in January, she worked diligently to bring her creation to life. The space, which was once a living room, has since been completely transformed.

“We had just started to become more open in March, but now we’re ready for full service,” Pope said.

Roots will be open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, though Pope will likely add a morning cooking class on Saturdays and extend hours for special events in the coming months.

Pope’s deli business, Boards & Bars, will also be hosting the event. All are welcome to visit the new space, which includes a consultation room, an Inbody 570 composition scale, meeting space, take-out space and a kitchen.

Information will be available for those interested in learning more about cooking demonstrations or tips. Pope said she was excited to meet people and share her expertise and products with the public.

“Come and go as you please, talk to us and try some of our products,” Pope said.

Rae Burnette is GA and Crime & Courts Reporter at the Globe Gazette. You can reach her by phone at 641.421.0523 or [email protected]

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