The Coast News Group
Sea Notes

Stoking the nutritional fires

I first met Suzanne Beckstrom in 1979 when we worked together at Cardiff Surf and Sport on Coast Highway in Cardiff.

Nutritionist Suzanne Beckstrom prepares the ingredients for surfing your best. Photo by Chris Ahrens
At that time, she was a single mother, raising her daughter Lisa and son Jorma.

Aside from making sure that homework and chores were completed, providing tasty and nutritious meals for her children was paramount. She says now, “When my kids asked for dessert, I offered them a piece of fruit. They didn’t appreciate that much back then, but now, as adults, they’re grateful for the healthy foundation they received growing up.”

Suzanne’s son Jorma began surfing at a young age and soon earned a name in the North County because of his rapid-fire, vertical surfing style.

Meanwhile, Suzanne’s role was to keep him properly nourished and provide the necessary energy for those intense surf contest heats. While other parents were filling their children with jelly doughnuts and soda, she was aware that surfing required better fuel than that.

From 1993 through 1999, Suzanne managed the Corporate Wellness division of 24-Hour Fitness. She then began combining her nutritional background with disciplined workouts several days a week at the gym. She continued working out and eating well, remaining virtually ageless through three grandchildren, all of who are boys and love to surf. “I never wanted to sit on the sidelines and watch my grandkids play. I wanted to be out there playing with them,” she said. “Adding yoga to my exercise routine led me to increased flexibility, which has helped to keep me from being sidelined by injuries.”

Ready for a change in careers during the economic downturn, Suzanne’s lifelong passion for healthy living led to a new career. Embracing change, she returned to school to study nutrition, ultimately earning certification as a Nutritional Consultant.

While teaching clients the fundamentals of sound nutrition, she coaches and encourages them in a healthy lifestyle as well. “I’m passionate about these things,” she says. “When people begin eating better, they naturally begin feeling better. For some, the goal is weight loss, which happens as a result of better nutrition and replacing old habits with new and improved practices.

“People may think they understand how nutrition works, but it’s complicated and sometimes counterintuitive. It’s so rewarding helping people achieve a healthier weight and state of living.

Suzanne points out that while “You can’t put a price on good health, purchasing better quality food is one of the best investments you’ll ever make in your life.”

While she works with a variety of clients, Suzanne understands firsthand that surfers have specific dietary needs. “With five surfers in my immediate family, I know what gets them moving and surfing their best. It’s not a cup of coffee and a doughnut, or even a protein bar. With a few (painless) modifications to your diet, you can be out there surfing with your children and grandchildren rather than watching from a beach chair on the sand.”

Suzanne continues regular workouts at the gym, practices yoga, and enjoys power walks with her daughter, Lisa. To learn more about Suzanne Beckstrom’s nutritional counseling or to schedule an appointment with her, visit: She is offering a free nutritional consultation for anyone contacting her between Sept. 1 and Sept. 15.