March 9, marks Registered Dietitian Day — a celebration that occurs during National Nutrition Month®. When you need reliable food and nutrition information rely on qualified professionals in the field. Registered dietitians (RD’s) draw on their experience to develop a personalized nutrition plan for individuals of all ages. They are able to separate facts from fads and translate nutritional science into information you can use. Here are the American Dietetic Association’s top ten reasons why consulting an RD can benefit you:
1) You have diabetes, cardiovascular problems or high blood pressure. An RD serves as an integral part of your health-care team by helping you safely change your diet without compromising taste or nutrition.
2) You are thinking of having or have had gastric bypass surgery. Since your stomach can only manage small servings, it’s a challenge to get the right amount of nutrients in your body. An RD will work with you and your physician to develop an eating plan for your new needs.
3) You have digestive problems. An RD will work with your physician to help fine-tune your diet so you are not aggravating your condition with the wrong foods.
4) You’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant. An RD can help make sure you get nutrients like folate, especially during the first three months of pregnancy, lowering your newborn’s risk for neural tube or spinal cord defects.
5) You need guidance and confidence for breastfeeding your baby. An RD can help make sure you’re getting enough iron, vitamin D, fluoride and B vitamins for you and your little one.
6) Your teenager has issues with food and eating healthfully. An RD can assist with eating disorders like anorexia, bulimia and overweight issues.
7) You need to gain or lose weight. An RD can suggest additional calorie sources for healthy weight gain or a restricted-calorie eating plan plus regular physical activity for weight loss while still eating all your favorite foods.
8) You’re caring for an aging parent. An RD can help with food or drug interaction, proper hydration, special diets for hypertension and changing taste buds as you age.
9) You want to eat smarter. An RD can help you sort through misinformation; learn how to read labels at the supermarket; discover that healthy cooking is inexpensive, learn how to eat out without ruining your eating plan and how to resist workplace temptations.
10) You want to improve your performance in sports. An RD can help you set goals to achieve results — whether you’re running a marathon, skiing or jogging with your dog.
The University of Idaho offers the Dietetics degree and our seniors spend their last year in Coeur’d Alene, Spokane and Boise at medical facilities, outpatient clinics and community programs. They learn to provide medical nutrition therapy for oncology, gastroenterology, cardiology, dialysis, diabetes, other medical conditions with nutrition implications, including tube feedings and Total Parental Nutrition (feeding a person intravenously). Medical nutrition therapy can have an enormous impact on the outcome of many diseases.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Nutrition and Dietetics careers are expected to increase much faster than other jobs by 2020 and faster than many other industries within health care. If you know of someone interested in becoming a dietitian please contact us at the University of Idaho. Or if you are interested in making a charitable gift to support our UI’s Dietetics program please contact Mandy Hanousek at the University of Idaho at 208-885-5369 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Your gift will directly impact and improve our students’ experience.