Self-Care & Mental Wellness: Madeline Alfiero Of Osea Nutrition On The Top Five Selfcare Practices That Improve Mental Wellness

An Interview With Maria Angelova


My top five selfcare practices include: 5- minute daily meditations, yoga, journaling, walking, and making smoothies.

Let’s face it. It seems that everyone is under a great deal of stress these days. This takes a toll on our mental wellness. What are some of the best self-care practices that we can use to help improve our mental wellness and mental well-being? In this interview series, we are talking to medical doctors, mental health professionals, health and wellness professionals, and experts about self-care or mental health who can share insights from their experience about How Each Of Us Can Use Self Care To Improve Our Mental Wellness. As a part of this series, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Madeline Alfiero.

Madeline Alfiero and she is the sole owner of Osea Nutrition. She is a Registered Dietitian, a certified confidence coach and mindfulness nutritionist as well as a yoga and pilates instructor. Health and wellness is not just something that she preach but, it’s what she practice on a daily basis.

She is dedicated to helping women like you become the best version of yourself! Whether you are battling an eating disorder and/or hormonal imbalance, battling cancer, began your plastic surgery journey or are eager to lose weight, this is your moment and she is here for you. You are worthy of investing in yourself!

Thank you so much for doing this interview with us. It is a great honor. Our readers would love to learn more about you and your personal background. Can you please share your personal story? What has brought you to this point in your life?

I am a Licensed Registered Dietitian who counsels women suffering from hormonal imbalances, eating disorders, disordered eating as well as those struggling with weight loss and planning to pursue the plastic surgery journey. I grew up in upstate New York, attended a private elementary, high school and college in New England. My path seemed concrete and predictable. But, in 2015, I had an identity crisis. I did not know who I was as a woman, what I wanted as a career or generally what I wanted in life. In November of 2015, I withdrew from college with my parent’s support and pursued my yoga teacher training certification. This moment completely changed who I was as a woman. This was my first act of self-care. Pursuing my yoga teacher training was my first introduction to wellness but, specifically the eastern traditions of wellness. Yoga became my main form of self-care but, I still did not have a firm understanding of my purpose. In 2016, I went back to college but, this time in Chicago, IL. I studied Advertising and Public Relations, which played a role in my understanding of self-care but, not until later in life. When I entered the Public Relations world, I worked on accounts that were in the wellness industry which started to peak my interest in nutrition. This peak of interest snowballed into me reaching out to registered dietitians to see what their careers were like and how they were making a difference in the wellness industry. As much as I loved Public Relations, I finally realized it was not serving my purpose. I graduated from college, said goodbye to Public Relations and enrolled in a Bachelors/Master’s program in New York to become a Registered Dietitian. And, as they say, the rest is history.

What is your “WHY” behind what you do? What fuels you?

I became a Licensed Registered Dietitian to make an impact on people’s lives. I want individuals to feel heard, validated, and confident in their wellness journey. I am incredibly passionate about helping people become the best version of themselves on their own terms.

My vision of nutrition is what fuels me to jump out of bed every morning. I believe nutrition should be fun, approachable, and personal. It is my duty to educate individuals through counseling, written word and social mediums, that nutrition is neither black nor white. Nutrition should be molded to fit the person you want to be in the future.

Sometimes our mistakes can be our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about a mistake or failure which you now appreciate has taught you a valuable lesson?

In June of 2013, I had just graduated from high school and was expected to start college as a freshman at a university in New England. Unlike all of my friends who were bubbling over with excitement to start college, something did not feel right. It was not just the excitement I was lacking but, college in general did not seem like a good idea for me at that point in time. I was always told college is the best time to reinvent yourself but, how could I reinvent myself if I did not know who I was supposed to be? I did not have the slightest clue of what I was interested in academically, socially, or personally. I made the choice to suppress these thoughts, put a smile on my face and went away to college. I enrolled in the classes that would place me on a pre-law track and excelled but, I still did not feel like I was serving my purpose in life. Over the two and a half years in college, I spent countless nights in my dorm room asking myself crucial questions such as” What’s my purpose? What are my interests? Who do I want to be? Do I like where I am at in life?” Every time I forced myself to answer these questions, one thought always came to mind: I should have trusted my gut instinct back in the summer of 2013 and not have gone away to college. When I enrolled in my fall semester as a junior in 2015, I made the conscious choice to face my mistake head-on. I gave myself two options: stay on course or withdraw from college and discover who I am. To this day, I am grateful that I finally trusted my gut instincts and left college.

You are a successful leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?

The three-character strengths that have been the most instrumental to my success are: determination, empathy, and confidence.

Anyone who has started a business for the first time knows that there are more downs than ups in the beginning. During the first few months of starting my private practice, Osea Nutrition PLLC, there were many days I wanted to give up because I was struggling to gain clientele and network with providers. It felt like there was no light at the end of the tunnel. It would have been easy to give up but, I forced myself to face reality. There have been thousands of successful entrepreneurs who had much higher mountains to climb, and they made it to the top. If they didn’t give up, then why should I?

When counseling, empathy is essential to creating a genuine connection with clients. Most of the times when clients start meeting with me, they feel ashamed, angry, or confused about their diagnosis and just want someone to listen. Many of my patients who have a hormonal imbalance, such as PCOS, feel a lack of femininity which affects their confidence. My approach is to listen and express gratitude that they are inviting me into their life to be a part of their support system. My style of counseling has given my clients the ability to conquer their goals.

As someone who is considered an expert in nutrition, it was easy for me to feel like an imposter in my field when I first started Osea Nutrition PLLC. For instance, I would tell myself stories like “well this dietitian has been in the field longer me, she has more clients than me, I don’t have 50k followers on Instagram, so I’ll never get clients,” leading to a gut and mind imbalance. I had to take a step back and make a list of everything that I am good at, not just in nutrition, but in life. Someone is always going to know more than you but, also, someone is going to know less than you. Looking at my list of strengths, I realized that I will be a successful entrepreneur.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting new projects you are working on now? How do you think that will help people?

I am filming a very exciting project right now, which will be live starting December 1, 2022, on my Instagram, @madelinerosealfiero. The project is called “The 25 Days of Self-Care” Advent Calendar. As someone who does not enjoy chocolate, I always felt like I was missing out on the Advent Calendar experience, so I decided to create my own. It is my hope that the “The 25 Days of Self-Care” Advent Calendar will show my followers and people across the world, that self-care does not have to be complicated or fit current trends. It is important to show individuals that self-care should be personalized to your lifestyle and culture.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the main focus of our interview, about the interface between self-care and mental health. From where you stand personally or professionally, why are you so passionate about mental well-being?

I am incredibly passionate about mental well-being because there is a proven scientific link between gut and mental health. When we are thinking positively, we are more likely to make better decisions for our bodies such as choosing more nutritious foods.

Based on your research or experience, how exactly does self-care impact our mental wellness?

When you practice self-care, you are in a more relaxed state causing your cortisol levels to decrease. If someone is in constant fight or flight weight loss, androgen production and inflammation will be difficult to control. The physical effects of high cortisol levels can cause anxiety, self-esteem and food issues. When you incorporate self-care into your lifestyle, you will begin to access the grey area of thinking, allowing you to make more balanced choices leading to better nutritional habits.

Here is our primary question. Can you please share your “Top Five Selfcare Practices That Each Of Us Can Use To Improve Our Mental Wellness”?

My top five selfcare practices include: 5- minute daily meditations, yoga, journaling, walking, and making smoothies.

Can you please share a few of the main roadblocks that prevent people from making better self-care choices? What would you suggest can be done to overcome those roadblocks?

One of the most common roadblocks that prevents people from not making better self-care choices is misunderstanding the true definition of self-care. Self-care is not meant to be elaborate, trend driven or energy draining. The moment that self-care becomes a chore, it is no longer self-care.

The second most common roadblock that prevents people from not making better self-care choices is believing self-care is too expensive to practice. Advertisements and social media influencers have shown society that self-care is only effective if you spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars on juices, skincare and clothes.

When you practice self-care, it should be acts that represent who are as an individual. My first tip is to break your self-care routine into small steps. Instead of feeling the pressure to do an hour of self-care every day, try a five-minute activity. My second tip is to introduce self-care activities that you enjoy doing. For instance, if you like making a cup of tea, start with that.

In one sentence, what would you say to someone who doesn’t prioritize their mental well-being?

“How can I best support you right now?”

Thank you for all that great insight! Let’s start wrapping up. Can you share your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Why does this quote resonate with you so much?

“Learn from every mistake, because every experience, particularly your mistakes, are there to teach you and force you into being more of who you are”- Oprah Winfrey

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? They might just see this, especially if we both tag them :-)

I would love to have a breakfast or lunch with Bethenny Frankel. Ms. Frankel is an incredibly successful female entrepreneur who influenced the food and nutrition industry by creating one of the first low calorie cocktail brands. As someone who is new to the industry, I look up to Ms. Frankel as a trailblazer for someone who is trying to put a nutritious twist on common foods. Have you tasted her salad dressings? They are delicious, and I even recommend them to my clients.

I truly appreciate your time and valuable contribution. One last question. How can our readers best reach or follow you?

Readers can best reach me by going to my website or by following me on Instagram @madelinerosealfiero

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent on this. We wish you only continued success.

About The Interviewer: Maria Angelova, MBA is a disruptor, author, motivational speaker, body-mind expert, Pilates teacher and founder and CEO of Rebellious Intl. As a disruptor, Maria is on a mission to change the face of the wellness industry by shifting the self-care mindset for consumers and providers alike. As a mind-body coach, Maria’s superpower is alignment which helps clients create a strong body and a calm mind so they can live a life of freedom, happiness and fulfillment. Prior to founding Rebellious Intl, Maria was a Finance Director and a professional with 17+ years of progressive corporate experience in the Telecommunications, Finance, and Insurance industries. Born in Bulgaria, Maria moved to the United States in 1992. She graduated summa cum laude from both Georgia State University (MBA, Finance) and the University of Georgia (BBA, Finance). Maria’s favorite job is being a mom. Maria enjoys learning, coaching, creating authentic connections, working out, Latin dancing, traveling, and spending time with her tribe. To contact Maria, email her at To schedule a free consultation, click here.



Maria Angelova, CEO of Rebellious Intl.
Authority Magazine

Maria Angelova, MBA is a disruptor, author, motivational speaker, body-mind expert, Pilates teacher and founder and CEO of Rebellious Intl.