March 13 is National Registered Dietitian Day. I don’t usually get excited about ‘days.’ I show my love every day–not just on Valentine’s, and I help people eat better every day–not just on RD day.
But a recognition is nice! And to celebrate the many ways we, dietitians, can help people is even nicer!
Someone once told me that he doesn’t need a dietitian because he doesn’t want to lose weight. He was actually surprised that I can help him with Crohn’s disease.
And that’s why I’m writing this post–11 reasons to see a dietitian. There might be more of course. I remember one episode on The Doctors saying that each person needs a primary care physician, OB (for women), and a dermatologist. (Humm, dermatologist?). I’m adding a dietitian to the list.
Trying to Lose Weight
A Nutritionist will tailor a program for you, incorporating some of the foods you already eat, listen to your daily challenges, building on the skills that you already having, and problem-solving with you.
Managing a Medical Condition
It’s impossible to list all conditions dietitians help with. If I want to give it a shot, here’s the list: diabetes, pre-diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome, crohn’s, ulcerative colitis, celiac disease, ADHD/ADD, migraines, fibromyalgia, PCOS, autism, liver disease, cancers, and autoimmune diseases.
Trying to be More Productive
What you eat affects your energy level. And what you’re missing (certain nutrients) will make you tired. Who wouldn’t want more energy? Who wouldn’t want to be more productive?
Eliminating Stress about Meal Planning
What’s for dinner? What’s for lunch? What’s for a snack? What should I buy? How do I cook more vegetables? These are just some questions that can make you anxious about meal planning and preparation. A dietitian will help you–and teach you–how to plan healthy meals so you’re no longer stressed about it. See a dietitian long enough, and healthy meal planning becomes second nature.
Wanting to Get Pregnant or Already Pregnant
There’s no doubt that eating a nutritious diet improves your health and your baby’s. Did you know that eating certain foods and not eating others can lower your chance of getting pregnant? Nutrition can affect fertility.
Seeking Help with Eating disorders
Eating disorders need a holistic team approach, and a dietitian is certainly an important member of that team.
Seeking Wellness and Prevention
Many chronic diseases are caused by inflammation that has been accumulating over the years. At your 20’s and 30’s, you’re probably not thinking of your risk of having a heart attack or dementia. But what you eat now will affect how you age. Preventing and restoring is much easier to do that fixing a full blown problem as it approaches the no-return point.
Looking for Supplement Recommendation
There are a ton of dietary supplements on the market, all are not regulated. They may not contain what the labels says they do. The claims can be deceptive. The information can be overwhelming. Some supplements work best together, others work against each other. Dietary supplements can come in different forms; some are active and others are not. Some are more bio-available than others. You might need more or less of a nutrient than the average person. A dietitian who’s versed in supplements will recommend the type and dose that is right for you.
Dealing with Child Nutrition Issues
From picky eating to childhood-related medical conditions, many dietitians specialize in pediatric nutrition. What’s normal picky eating and what’s not? How do you deal with childhood obesity? What diets are best for kids with autism, ADHD, or dyslexia? Some questions a dietitian can answer for you.
Aiming for Optimal Nutrition for Sports
Many dietitians specialize in sports nutrition. What you eat affects your performance. Wouldn’t you want to set yourself up for success? Wouldn’t you want to give you body an advantage? Look for a dietitian with a CSSD credential.
Dealing with Conditions Conventional Medicine Can’t Treat
This might sound like a stretch, but nutrition can be the root of many chronic and inflammatory conditions. You can alleviate rheumatoid arthritis or fibromyalgia pain with the right diet. You can manage IBS, eliminate migraine headaches, or even psoriasis or chronic eczema. For a variety of reasons, many people live with damaged gut linings that lead to immune reactions to food (food sensitivities), contributing to inflammation and autoimmune diseases. Why not take a look at what you’re eating?
If you’re a dietitian, happy RD DAY! How else do you help your clients and patients? If you’re not a dietitian, I’d love to hear from you too. How can I help you or refer you to someone who specializes in what you need?