10 Reasons to Visit a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)
A Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) is a nationally recognized, licensed food and nutrition practitioner. Many people confuse an RDN with a nutritionist, but it’s important to note the difference.
An RDN is required to be licensed at the state and national level. RDN’s are required to complete a residency program prior to sitting for their certifying exam, and must complete ongoing professional education throughout their career. Many hold advanced degrees as well. In other words, the advice and guidance from an RDN is rooted in scientific evidence and best current practices.
So what do RDN’s do and why would someone require their services?
Here are 10 reasons you should consider a consult with a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist.
You Have Diabetes, Cardiovascular Problems or High Blood Pressure
If you have one of these conditions, the food you eat is going to play a major role in your health. The right diet will make all the difference in managing your condition. However, it can be tough to understand exactly what you need to eat, and how to ensure you have a plan you can stick to. A registered dietitian serves as an integral part of your health care team by helping you safely change your eating plan to address the underlying issues without compromising taste or nutrition.
You Are Thinking of Having or Have Had Gastric Bypass Surgery
A common misconception is that gastric bypass surgery is the end of all nutrition-related concerns. However, that’s not the case. Once you have the surgery, there are some very important nutrition considerations. Since your stomach can only manage small servings, it’s a challenge to get the right amount of nutrients in your body. An RDN will work with you and your physician to develop an eating plan for your new needs.
You Have Digestive Problems
Treating digestive problems requires quite a bit of tweaking in terms of your diet. There may be foods you need to eliminate and others you need to add. A registered dietitian nutritionist will work with you and your physician to help fine-tune your diet so you are not aggravating your condition.
You’re Pregnant or Trying to Get Pregnant
Proper nutrition is vital at all stages of life, but even more so when you’re responsible for not just your nutrition, but that of your baby as well. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help make sure you get vital nutrients such as folate, especially during the first three months of pregnancy, and manage pregnancy-associated blood pressure and glucose impairments.
You’ve got a Picky Eating Crew at Home
We all want to ensure our children are getting the proper nutrition, but what can you do if they just refuse to eat their veggies? A registered dietitian nutritionist can help make sure your family is getting the nutrition they need to grow and thrive without the fuss and frustration.
You need help Improving a Food Relationship
Whether due to the media or other external or internal influences, many people have an unhealthy relationship with food. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help mend that relationship and treat eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia.
You Need to Gain or Lose Weight
Whatever your nutrition goal is, a registered dietitian nutritionist can help you develop a personalized nutrient-structured eating plan, plus build healthy habits like regular physical activity to help you achieve a healthy weight while still eating all your favorite foods.
You’re Dealing with the effects of Aging
As we age, certain aspects of nutrition can become more difficult. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help with food or drug interactions, chewing and swallowing difficulty, proper hydration, special diets for hypertension, reducing the load on stiff and achy joints, and changing taste buds as you age.
You Want to Shop, Cook, and Eat Smarter
There’s a lot of information out there and it can be overwhelming to determine what is actually true and what’s just a fad. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help you sort through all that misinformation. Learn how to read labels at the supermarket, how to dine in or out without ruining your eating plan, how healthy cooking can be inexpensive, and how to resist workplace temptations.
You Want to Enhance Your Performance
When you’re working out, your body needs proper nutrition to prevent damage. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help you set goals to achieve results — whether you’re an aspiring athlete, training for a marathon, or just want to keep up with your kids and the dog.