jess and nita, registered dietitians

Hello! We're Jess & Nita

Combined, we have 4 children and more than 20 years of experience working as Registered Dietitians.  We’ve known each other for years, but only recently did we make the wise decision to collaborate and serve our community better. Our entry into motherhood naturally piqued our interest in infant and childhood nutrition.  And wow. We were both shocked to know:

  • there was a lot of misinformation floating around, 
  • there actually weren’t very many good quality resources for millennial parents and, 
  • while guidelines are great, we felt parents really struggled with the “how to” of feeding baby.

And so, we decided to share our expertise in the area of childhood nutrition to serve like-minded parents better and with the confidence they need to raise a happy, healthy eater.  We’ve done the hard work of translating science information into realistic ideas for young families.

As moms…

we understand that you feel worried about feeding your baby the “right way” to meet her nutritional needs and wish that you had a someone knowledgeable and trustworthy to guide you on this journey of starting solids

As Dietitians…

we believe you shouldn’t have to feel scared or worried about starting your baby on solids. Using the Happy Healthy Eater approach you can: 

Jessica Penner, BSc, Registered Dietitian

I’m a mama of two, Registered Dietitian, and wife of a talented musician. He would say pianist, but I say musician because he’s one of those people that can pick up any instrument and play it beautifully!

I’m passionate about helping parents feed their children confidently. 

I grew up with the “picky eater” label tied to my identity, but my love for travel forced me to meet the challenge of accepting new foods. I’m now happy to say I’m a recovered picky eater and absolutely love exploring new flavours in the kitchen! As part of my journey to develop a better relationship with food, I took an entry level university class at Canadian Mennonite University called Food, Fact, and Fallacies. It was my first taste into the study of nutrition and I was hooked! I switched schools to the University of Manitoba in order to enrol in a Bachelor’s degree in science, majoring in Human Nutritional Sciences. I finished with the highest GPA in my graduating class then completed a ten month internship with the Manitoba Partnership Dietetic Education Program and, since 2011, I can now happily call myself a Registered Dietitian! 


I initially worked in public health, helping new moms navigate feeding themselves and their babies. In this roll I participated in an advisory group with the provincial government to update the “Feeding Your Baby Solids: 6 months to 1 year” handout. I also had the honour of educating my peers on the World Health Organization growth charts at a provincial conference. 

After my oldest was born in 2013, I dove headfirst into the world of online infopreneurship with my blog Smart Nutrition, sharing recipes and nutrition articles. I saw a need for daily accountability in making healthy eating changes so I created an online program I Quit Overeating, which has now helped hundreds around the globe gain control over food. 

I never forgot my love for helping parents develop confidence in feeding their babies. So here I am now, joined by my amazing colleague, Nita, to give you a value-packed course on introducing solids to your baby.

Nita Sharda, BSc, Registered Dietitian

Nita and her boys

I’m a proud South Asian woman, mama of two young boys and wife of a football fanatic and high school educator.  My passion areas include all things related to food with a specific emphasis on women’s health and family nutrition.

I was about 16 years old when I decided that being a Registered Dietitian would be my jam.  After high school, I started volunteering and taking necessary courses to make it there. After completing a Bachelor’s degree in Science, majoring in Human Nutritional Sciences I received the news that I had secured a coveted spot for a 10 month internship with Manitoba Partnership Dietetic Education Program.  And now, I’ve been practicing in Dietetics for 11 years. 

I’ve tried my best to narrow my key areas of focus, but, the truth is I love all ages and stages of nutrition.  My first few positions included clinical pediatric nutrition – here, I worked with really ill children, public health nutrition and home care.  I’ve had the humble opportunity to work in geriatric care for most of my career – being a part of the end of life process for our seniors is a special job. I also maintain a private practice, Carrots and Cake, where I counsel clients in a variety of areas and it was only when I had my first son that I really started to develop a keen interest in childhood nutrition.  After I had introduced him to solid food, I decided to host workshops in my local community to teach other parents more about introducing solid food to their baby. More and more, other parents from around the world wanted to access to the same information.  And so, I decided to collaborate with Jessica to bring valuable course content to an online platform. Just. For. You.

Happy Healthy Eaters operates on original lands of Anishinaabeg, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota, and Dene peoples, and on the homeland of the Métis Nation. We respect the Treaties that were made on these territories, we acknowledge the harms and mistakes of the past including wrongful, unethical and damaging nutrition experiments, and we dedicate ourselves to move forward in partnership with Indigenous communities in a spirit of reconciliation and collaboration.