Top 10 Reasons to Consult with a Registered Dietitian

Have you hugged your registered dietitian today?

March is National Nutrition Month and every year there is one day during this special month dedicated to recognizing registered dietitians.

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day is celebrated on the second Wednesday in March, thanks to the American Dietetic Association.

Recognition That’s Well-Deserved

As the nation’s food and nutrition experts, registered dietitians are committed to improving the health of their patients and community. Registered Dietitian Day commemorates the dedication of RDs as advocates for advancing the nutritional status of Americans and people around the world.

Registered Dietitians are Experts

The American Dietetic Association(ADA) expresses that registered dietitians are the food and nutrition experts who can translate the science of nutrition into practical solutions for healthy living. There are many people out there that call themselves “nutritionists” but RDs have degrees in nutrition, dietetics, public health or a related field from well-respected, accredited colleges and universities.

Image of Grace Derocha teaching kids about healthy food choices.
The author in action, teaching kids about healthy food choices.
Photo credit: A Healthier Michigan

We have also completed an internship, which is usually at least one year long and passed a board examination to be able to have the RD credentials. Registered Dietitians use their nutrition expertise to help individuals make unique, positive lifestyle changes. RDs work throughout the community in hospitals, schools, public health clinics, nursing homes, fitness centers, food management, food industry, universities, research and private practice.

Many dietitians also get advanced degrees and specialize in certain areas. As you know, I am a registered dietitian. I also have my MBA and specialize in weight management and have an extra certification as a CDE, certified diabetes educator. I am also a certified health coach and teach fitness classes.

One of the beautiful things about choosing a career as a registered dietitian are the various paths you can take with the knowledge you have. You can truly find your own niche. My favorite thing about being a dietitian is helping others and watching them become healthier and happier.

Top 10 Reasons Why Consulting with 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 eating plan 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. A registered dietitian will work with your physician to help fine-tune your diet so you are not aggravating your condition with fried foods, too much caffeine or carbonation.
  4. You’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant. A registered dietitian 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. A registered dietitian 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. A registered dietitian can assist with eating disorders like anorexia, bulimia and overweight issues.
  7. You need to gain or lose weight. A registered dietitian 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. A registered dietitian 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. A registered dietitian 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. A registered dietitian can help you set goals to achieve results — whether you’re running a marathon, skiing or jogging with your dog.

If you are looking for a registered dietitian in your area, go to the American Dietetic Association’s website and click on “Find an Expert.”

I am accepting all hugs today too.  If you have any questions about becoming a registered dietitian or any health and wellness questions, I am here for you.

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Main image photo credit: Yelena Yemchuk

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Read 26 Comments

  1. I am curious, this website is sponsored and promoted by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, and this post details the benefits of visiting a registered dietitian; however, RDs are unable to be credentialed with BCBSM and cannot bill nor be reimbursed for such services. Is there a specific reason why?

  2. I am a registered dietitian in a private practice and unable to obtain credentialing with BCBSM and struggling to obtain any kind of reimbursement for my services even at the doctors office. Dietitians in other states are being cedentialed. Just curious why that is not the case here in Michigan? Why would you promote such articles when we are not even on your list of professionals to get credentialed?

  3. I found it interesting that you state that if you are trying to get pregnant a dietitian can help. My brother and his wife want to have a baby and are looking for ways to stay healthy. I will send them this information so they can start looking for nutritionist services that can help them out.

  4. Thanks for mentioning how an RD can help the diet of someone who has diabetes without compromising taste. My brother just learned that he has diabetes and he is worried about getting rid of his favorite foods. I’ll have to share this with him so he can find a dietitian that can help his nutritional needs.

  5. How do I find a RD for a person who has just been diagnosed with kidney disease, prediabetic and obese?

  6. Thanks for mentioning how a registered dietitian can help you learn and understand how to eat smarter and healthier. My mom wants our entire family to start eating healthier, but she is not sure where to start. I will suggest that she find a reliable dietician that she can meet with to help her plan better meals for our family.

    1. Charlotte,

      Glad to hear the information was helpful and you are going to pass it along to your mom.

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