Registered dietitian Kelli Morgan on the benefits of working with an R.D.
What’s in a title?
Everyone has an opinion on what you should do––or not do––about your diet and nutritional well-being. Between what you hear on television and read in the news, eating right can seem like a daunting task. Worse, whose opinion is the right opinion? Which one should you follow? The good news is that a registered dietitian can help! Whether you want to become healthier, deal with food allergies, or lose weight, a registered dietitian can competently guide you through the murky waters of nutritional misinformation and provide you with sound, easy-to-follow nutritional advice.
There are many benefits to working with a registered dietitian. They include:
1. Superior level of nutrition knowledge Anyone can call himself or herself a nutritionist, but only a registered dietitian (RD) has completed a comprehensive four-year Bachelor of Science degree that follows the curriculum of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. In addition to holding a bachelor’s degree, an RD must complete a yearlong internship, pass a national registration exam, and meet licensure requirements. This also means keeping up to date on emerging trends through continuing education.
2. Personally tailored approach A dietitian is a health investigator seeking to learn about a patient’s current and desired state of health. At your initial visit, you will complete a detailed health-background screening. After learning about your health and food preferences, an RD will help you set up a personalized meal and lifestyle plan. Follow-up visits will monitor your progress and help you fine-tune your plan to achieve maximum results.
3. Help manage chronic disease RDs are valued professional members of the medical community. If you suffer from high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, or cancer, it can be hard to know exactly what to eat. Working with a dietitian will ensure that your eating habits appropriately help manage the disease and that you’re getting all the important nutrients.
4. Navigate food allergies and intolerances Many people, especially children, suffer from undiagnosed food allergies and sensitivities. An RD can help you figure out what foods are causing the allergies and show you how to avoid them. Talking with an RD after a food allergy diagnosis is important for learning to keep your diet balanced and tasty, too!
5. Lose weight in a healthy way The key to lasting weight loss is finding the correct balance of food and exercise. An RD will partner with you to develop a safe, effective weight-loss plan that you can stick with for the long haul. He or she will create meal plans and healthy recipes with you.
The core principal I adhere to is that eating can be healthy and delicious! Here’s a healthy cookie recipe I share with all of my clients, because who doesn’t like cookies! The basic recipe is great for kids and adults suffering from food allergies. It’s also high in fiber and low in fat. My kids have been known to sneak these for breakfast without getting in trouble!
1 1/2 cups oat flour (I just throw the oats into the Vitamix and make my own oat flour)
3/4 cups oats
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 cup raw sugar
1/3 cup chocolate chips (I use mini)
1 tsp. canola oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/3 cup soy milk (almond and coconut milk work great)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine all the dry ingredients in a bowl. Combine the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Mix the dry and wet ingredients together until well combined.
Use a small ice cream scoop to portion out cookies on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or a Sil-Pad. Bake for 10–12 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are light brown
*Adapted from Bethenny Frankel’s recipe