What is the difference between a registered dietitian and a nutritionist?
Dietitian is a protected title across Canada. Anyone can call him/herself a nutritionist, regardless of qualifications or education. Dietitians are required to have graduated from an accredited university program which includes a practicum working in various health care settings to obtain experience. Dietitians do not “just use Canada’s Food Guide” as is implied or stated by some alternative practitioners; however, we are compelled by our ethical and professional obligations to work with evidence-based resources to assess, educate and advise our clients. Dietitians are able to use a variety of approaches and methods (face-to-face via telehealth, email, graphic, video) to help our clients achieve their nutritional goals and better health and wellbeing.
Are dietitian services covered under provincial medical benefits?
Only dietitians working in public health care settings are covered under the BC Medical Services Plan (MSP). However, more and more extended medical benefits plans offer coverage for dietitian services; Canada Life, Sunlife and Group Health Benefits are among the many companies that offer this option in their plans. Ask your plan administrator for this information. Direct billing is available for some plans.
I am not comfortable doing in-person appointments since COVID; do you offer virtual appointments?
Yes, definitely! I am only doing virtual appointments at this time; I offer these through an encrypted platform called Practice Better (™), which allows confidential telehealth sessions you can do in the comfort and privacy of your home. Contact me for more information, or look under Services to book a free introductory phone call to see how I can help you through virtual counselling and email support.
In which areas do you provide diet counseling?
I have experience working in a wide area of clinical areas, including weight management, emotional eating, renal nutrition and pre- and post-bariatric surgery education. The focus of my practice is to help my clients work toward better health through nutritional management , while developing a better relationship with food.
What does a “bariatric” diet consist of?
Usually referring to the diet followed after bariatric surgery, this consists of a gradual progression of diet consistency from liquid to puréed to soft to regular as the new stomach pouch adjusts to food. Avoiding caffeine, carbonated drinks, gas-producing food as well as sugary drinks and other high-sugar foods is recommended, in order to avoid unpleasant side effects and ensure foods chosen allow adequate intake for healing and long-term health.
What eating habits are associated with better outcomes after bariatric surgery?
Establishing a regular pattern of eating, focusing on adequate protein by choosing healthy protein sources with every meal, avoiding too-frequent snacking after the initial recovery diet, and identifying and managing emotional eating triggers are just a few of the many habits associated with better outcomes after bariatric surgery.
What are some strategies for managing emotional eating?
Many strategies for managing emotional eating are based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) techniques, to help you change your thinking in order to change emotional responses and behaviour. Delaying techniques, using distraction, and identifying triggers in order to plan for them are all useful interventions. I have worked with clients effectively to improve their control around food and thus their relationship with food through these strategies.