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Jonathan_hodgkins's avatar

Appointment with a nutritionist?

Asked by Jonathan_hodgkins (684points) November 21st, 2013

I have become increasingly interested in how to optimize my diet in regards to my own health and in an effort to maximize my own metabolism. I just set up an appointment with the nutritionist at my university but am unaware what sort of questions I should be asking to get the most out of my appointment? What are they capable of to help me achieve my goals?

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10 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

I saw a nutritionist in my teens (I am in my 40’s now) and it was very helpful. I was referred to her because my cholesterol and tryglicerides were so high. Bring along any labwork you have regarding lipids (cholesterol) and vitamins and minerals. Some common ones tested are iron, vitamin B12, vitamin D, and magnesium. Possibly glucose if that is a concern for you. Some doctors do those tests routinely, some only run them if they have a suspicion of deficiency.

Also, I recommend writing down everything you eat for a good week or two. Be brutally honest. We all understand Thanksgiving might be a “bad” and unusual weekend if you are living here in the United States. You also might want to record how much walking and exercise you do.

ragingloli's avatar

The first question you have to ask him/her if she has the title of ‘dietitian’

Any charlatan can call himself a “nutritionist”, dietitian is a protected title.

JLeslie's avatar

I would hope at a university you won’t wind up with a charlatan as @ragingloli points out. It is true almost anyone can call themselves a nutrionist. Dieticians must have a bachelors degree in their field. However, there is a such thing as a masters level in nutrition, so a nutrionist can be very educated and knowledgable. You need to find out his/her credentials. I agree with that. The laws vary by state who can be called what.

Rarebear's avatar

@ragingloli Thank you. I’m married to a registered dietitian. You are absolutely correct.

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

Yes, @ragingloli is absolutely correct. You’ll want to find a licensed professional with the right education and credentials. Each state has its own regulatory and licensing procedures. Please make sure that you don’t give your good money to someone who’s unqualified and might harm, rather than help, you.

Rarebear's avatar

OTOH if the nutritionist is someone at a university, they’re most likely qualified.

Pachy's avatar

Assuming this person is a licensed professional, you’ll want to be as open and honest as possible with him/her about your dietary habits, and very specific about what you hope to achieve—and then stick faithfully to the plan you’re given. I used one in the ‘90s and was very pleased with the results, and equally important, I became far more sensitized about the power of exercis and diet (diet, as opposed to dieting).

marinelife's avatar

They can help you customize your normal dietary regimen to be more healthy without having to change your entire lifestyle.

gailcalled's avatar

The nutritionist I saw had a PhD in microbiology and was a consultant at Albany Med. School. They used to send residents to sit in on my guy’s sessions with me, I remember.

He kept things pretty simple.

Eat four green, one red,one orange, and one yellow veg. every day. No white foods, no sweets. 67 grams of protein (didn’t have to be meat). No cheese. Keep a food diary and write down every morsel. i didn’t drink or smoke so that never came up. i saw him once a week for a year and lost 50 lbs.

WarmFuzzies23's avatar

As a Nutritionist I am always interested in finding out what my new client is seeking from me.

I would recommend asking if they believe in goal setting- followup and why?

Ask if they believe in the Integrative nutritional model. It should include all areas, Mind, Body and Spirit. Its a change in lifestyle not just a “DIET”

Ask them what they do for nutrition, not because you want to follow it, but you want to know if they walk the walk or just talk about it.

I coach my Clients in all of those areas and I live the lifestyle.

Take it slow, anyone who wants to change everything about your life at once is setting you up for failure, it takes 28–30 days to make a new habit and almost twice that to change an old one. Good Luck in changing your relationship with food.

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