Preventing or delaying diabetes may work best alongside a registered dietitian, study says

A new study suggests that nutrition counseling from a registered dietitian (RD) can help prevent or delay diabetes and associated health problems.

The value of working with an RD is that these professionals can help create a tailored eating plan that takes into account weight, lifestyle factors, hereditary concerns, and other health problems a patient may have, said Angela Ginn, spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

"Research has shown that weight loss through moderate diet changes and physical activity plays a significant role in preventing or delaying diabetes and its complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness, nerve damage and other health problems," Ginn explained. "A registered dietitian nutritionist is one of your best resources for developing a plan to make these lifestyle changes."

Education and expertise

While working with a doctor is the first step in managing diabetes, some patients may overlook the benefit of also having nutritional support through an RD. But since RDs often work as part of a larger medical team, Ginn said, they can be a valuable part of the treatment process.

According to the Academy, an RD can provide the highest level of nutritional counseling based on having the most years of schooling and education compared to a health coach or even a nutritionist.

"Ask your doctor if a referral for medical nutrition therapy provided by a registered dietitian nutritionist is right for you," Ginn said. "With a physician's referral, you can make an appointment to see the RDN at your local hospital outpatient department, physician clinic or at an RDN's practice near your home."

Source: Science Daily

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