There are many reasons you might want to consult a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN), including achieving a healthy weight, supporting a healthy pregnancy, boosting athletic performance, and more.
By Barrett White
Your body is like a machine, and food is fuel. Your body uses what you put into it – carbs for fuel, proteins for repair, and fats for storage. These are called macronutrients. There are also dozens of micronutrients like vitamins and minerals, which are just as important. Finding the best balance of nutrients in the foods you eat each day can determine how well you rest after a workout, how well you maintain your health as you age, and how efficiently you meet your goals – whatever they might be.
We sat down with Legacy’s own Registered Dietitian nutritionist (RDN) Sean Barrett to discuss the top five reasons someone might want to consult with a registered dietitian:
“Why do people consult an RDN? The reasons are endless,” says Barrett. “Nutrition literally affects every part of your health. No matter what you’re trying to achieve with your body – higher energy levels, athletic performance and even healthy pregnancy – it all hinges on what your body is running on; what you’re fueling it with.”
You need to manage a chronic disease
“Say you’re living with diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol issues, or some other form of chronic health issue. An RDN can meet with you to discuss the specific needs of your condition – or conditions – and assist you with producing a nutritional plan that works best for you and your body. This plan will have all the nutrients needed to manage your chronic issues.”
You are experiencing digestive issues
“There are several possible reasons for gastrointestinal problems, including fried foods and caffeine, primarily. An RDN can help you make choices that will help sooth the problem, and teach you how to implement those fixes long-term for a more comfortable lifestyle.”
You want to lose or gain weight
“This is probably the most common reason people seek out the advice of an RDN. While fad diets might seem interesting, they rarely work long-term. An RDN can help you make informed decisions about the food you eat to help you lose weight – and keep it off. The same applies to those looking to gain weight. When looking to gain weight, it’s important that you’re putting on healthy pounds.”
You’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant
“I highly suggest meeting with an RDN to make sure you’re getting the nutrients your body and your baby need for a healthy pregnancy. After pregnancy, it’s important that breastfeeding mothers continue to chat with their RDN to see that their newborn continues to receive the nutrients they need.”
You’re looking to improve athletic performance
“Depending on what your goal is – like running a marathon or simply having the energy to jog with your four-legged friend – there could be many different nutritional solutions to help meet your goals for athletic performance. A powerlifter is going to require a different nutritional plan than a long-distance runner, who will need a different plan than someone who has a mostly sedentary lifestyle but hits the gym an hour a day. Having a conversation with an RDN about your specific athletic needs can help you realize your goals, no matter how much your lifestyle varies from the next athlete’s.”
March is National Nutrition Month. To schedule a consultation with a Legacy RDN, ask your Legacy provider for a referral today. To schedule an appointment, call (832) 548 5000 or visit www.legacycommunityhealth.org.