If you are like most people, you struggle to maintain a healthy lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle is not only important for maintaining your overall health, but it can even assist you with their weight loss goals. A nutrition counselor can work with you to help you achieve your goals. They take the time to listen and understand where you are on your diet and lifestyle journey and work diligently to get you to where you want to be.
What is Nutritional Counselling?
Nutrition counseling is the continuing process of working with a healthcare professional to assess your individual dietary habits and identify areas where change is needed. The nutrition counselor is generally a registered dietitian (RD) or a certified nutrition consultant. A nutrition counselor provides educational materials, support and follow-up sessions to help the you maintain the necessary changes.
What is the Goal of Nutritional Counseling?
The main goal of nutritional counseling is to help individuals achieve and maintain nutritional changes. However, many people can benefit from nutritional counseling whether you are looking for a complete diet rehab, you wish to fine tune your dietary choices, or you are simply looking for new ideas for healthy recipes, nutritional counseling can benefit you.
Nutritional counseling is generally scheduled following a check-up with your primary care physician. Your physician will inform you whether you have any specific conditions that can be addressed with nutritional changes.
Who Can Benefit Nutritional Counseling?
Some patients attend nutritional counseling to become more informed about how their food choices affect their health. However, some patients are participants upon doctor’s orders. For individuals who suffer from a disorder, a nutritional change may be recommended to promote overall health. Nutritional counseling is also recommended to avoid drug interactions.
Other conditions that benefit from dietary interventions include:
• Eating disorders
• Chemical dependencies
• Weight loss as a result of taking certain medications
• High cholesterol
• Heart disease
• High blood pressure
• Irritable bowel syndrome
• Aches and pains in the joints
• Depression and anxiety
• Increase energy
• Improved well being
• And more
What to Expect During Your First Visit
Upon your first visit, the counselor will discuss your goals, objectives, your typical food intake and your reason for consulting a nutritionist.
Medical History Review
The counselor will review your medical history, including any supplements and medications you’re currently taking.
At this point, the counselor will explore your lifestyle to get a sense of your energy levels, stress levels, exercise, gastrointestinal function and more.
Dietary habits – The counselor will ask questions regarding your typical food intake including the beverages and foods consumed within the past 24 hours as well as how often certain food groups are consumed. They may even suggest that you keep a written record of your food intake for future assessments.
Body weight – The counselor will assess your body weight in relation to your height as defined by various weight-to-height tables. BMI, or body mass index, is also used to assess body weight.
Identify changes needed – Sometimes a patient already recognizes that they need dietary changes, but may require assistance making these changes, while other times, patients may require the counselor to help inform them on the benefits of different dietary choices. Together, they work to identify necessary changes.
Identify Barriers to Change – Once the necessary changes have been identified, the client and counselor will address any barriers that may arise and configure a plan to safeguard against them.
What Happens Next
For most clients, the challenge is not in making dietary changes but in maintaining them. Self-monitoring and ongoing follow-up can help patients maintain dietary changes.
Keeping track of your eating and your lifestyle habits against your set goals, can help keep track of your dietary behaviors.
In following-up counseling, both the individual and the counselor review food records and pinpoint issues that are negatively affecting change. Follow-up also provides the opportunity to re-evaluate strategies and goals for achieving your lifestyle changes.
Nutritional counseling can take anywhere from a few sessions to a few years. Some people like the accountability of scheduling monthly consultations until they feel confident.
Promedx Sports Injury & Wellness Center has been providing nutritional counseling to Canada residents for years. If you are interested in improving your overall well-being through dietary changes, please contact us at (905) 882-7688 for assistance today.