I’m very excited to post my very first blog post on the website for my new private practice! It has been quite the journey so far and I’m looking forward to getting back to doing what I love; counselling clients!
From talking to people about starting up a private practice and what they would be looking for in a dietitian, I realized that a lot of people are interested in the idea but aren’t exactly sure what to expect from the experience. Therefore, for my first blog post instead of posting a recipe or talking about the latest nutrition craze, I want to talk a little bit about why you might choose to come and see me and what you can expect when you come.
I'm not the "Food Police!"
First and foremost, I want to tell everyone what I usually say in every single assessment I do: I am not the food police. I find that people have many ideas in their minds about dietitians, one of the biggest ones being that we are going to judge their food habits because we are perfect and never eat any less healthy foods or “junk foods” and therefore look down on anyone who does. Let me say this now, I believe it is important to eat for enjoyment as well as health. If you were to come to a dietitian potluck, you will find more than salads. Don’t get me wrong, there’s almost always a salad. In addition to healthy dishes, however, you will usually also find some sort of delicious but not so healthy food, whether this is a rich appetizer or a decadent chocolate cake.
The most important thing when it comes to seeing a dietitian is honesty; if you just tell me what you think I want to hear instead of saying what’s really going on I can’t help. My job as a dietitian is to have a conversation with you about what you eat and how to help you move towards your goal. This may be just trying to eat a healthier, more balanced diet so that you feel better, helping you to manage your weight, or helping you to improve your sports performance. It might even be changing around the foods you eat to reduce gas, bloating, diarrhea or constipation if you're someone who struggles with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Or maybe it’s a combination of those things.
I'm not going to give you a strict meal plan; it's about balance
This doesn’t mean that you are going to walk out of my office with a list of foods to never eat again and a very strict meal plan to follow. Why? Because this way of trying to change your eating behaviour is not sustainable. You might follow it for a few weeks, maybe even a few months before you get sick of it, feel deprived, and say “to heck with it, I’m eating a whole pizza because this sucks.”
Instead, we will look at WHY you are eating what you are and discuss ways to improve that. It may be that you feel exhausted and time crunched when you come home from work and the last thing you want to do is cook so you eat out. If this is the case, then we may discuss meal planning and preparation to help you overcome that. Maybe you find that you eat when you’re bored or sad. Then we will discuss strategies to reduce those behaviours. Some people don’t know what foods are better for their health or which foods are bothering their stomachs. Then the conversation will switch over to more of the education side of things. None of this means I'm going to tell you to eliminate your favourite foods because let's face it: that's not sustainable!
I think the big take-home is that the experience of working with a dietitian is a little bit different for everyone because everyone has different obstacles they need to work on to improve their eating and health. My job as a healthcare practitioner is to help you find what works for you so that you can improve your eating while still enjoying life!
I hope that helps explain a little bit about me and what I do! If you want to know more, check out my website at www.pulsenutritionyk.com or check out my Facebook page! If you're interested in booking an appointment, you can click here.
Keep checking back for future posts where I will be discussing topics such as current hot topics, tips for cooking and meal planning, and even recipes!