What is Nutritional Counseling?
Nutrition Counseling is also referred to as Medical Nutrition Therapy. We work closely with our patients and counsel them to help improve their nutritional status. This typically involves lifestyle changes. We coach, motivate, and support them to make the changes they need to achieve success. We work as a team and negotiate with them, so that we are on this journey together. There will be obstacles along the way. It is our job to facilitate positive change. We try our best to make our sessions lively and fun. Our patients love coming into our practice.
Dr. Julie, Dr. Brian, and Colleen provide individualized nutritional assessment and counseling for both children and adults. All three members of the nutrition team have different approaches. Whether you need a more structured approach or a more flexible plan, we have you covered! The cherry on top is that many insurance plans cover our services. Just call our office and our administrative staff would be happy to choose the nutritionist that would best meet your needs! They will also guide you, so you know what to ask your insurance company to determine nutrition coverage.
What does Nutritional Counseling treat?
Most patients that see us for Nutrition Counseling have a host of medical problems and concerns. The most common nutrition issues that we treat include Cardiovascular Disease, Dyslipidemia, Eating Disorders (Anorexia, Bulimia and Orthorexia), Food Intolerances and Food Sensitivities, Gastrointestinal Diseases (IBD, Celiac Disease, Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis), GERD, Gluten Sensitivity, Hashimoto’s, Hypertension, Hypothyroidism, IBS (Diarrhea, Constipation, Gas, Bloating), Inflammation and Pain Management, Insomnia, Lactose Intolerance, Menopause and Peri-Menopause, Pregnancy and Lactation, Pediatric Nutrition, Type 2 Diabetes, and Underweight. This list is far from comprehensive. When patients book their initial visit, they tell our reception staff that they are coming for a specific issue, however, once they fill out our paperwork which asks about their symptoms and concerns, they are surprised that we can address so much with dietary intervention. It is not uncommon that patients tell us that this is the first time they have spoken to anyone regarding symptoms that they have been experiencing. The reason for this is that no one ever asked them, and they have been dealing with these issues for so long that they almost forgot that they should consider seeking help to alleviate these problems.
What is the typical patient journey?
Nutrition Counseling is a process, and changing dietary habits takes time. Most of our patients come into our practice because they were referred by a friend, family member, their primary care physician, or their insurance company. They are looking for answers to solve a specific medical problem, such as Diabetes. They may need help with issues such as Food Sensitivities or Gastrointestinal Distress. Our patients usually do not know what they need specifically or how long it will take to achieve the results that they desire. They just know that they need answers. The journey to wellness is different for everyone. Sometimes patients need some support and motivation to make small dietary modifications, while others may want to lose 200# and alleviate multiple comorbid conditions without the use of medications. The length of time a patient sees us, as well as their reasons for coming, are unique.
An example of an Initial Nutritional Consultation:
Our initial nutritional assessment is broken into two to three parts, preferably within one week. Part I is typically an hour and a half. However, there are some insurance plans that limit our initial visit to no more than an hour. Our goal during this visit is to get to know the patient. We review their paperwork, which includes a medical history, food records, a Systems Survey, and blood work if available. We ask our patients to bring in the actual bottles of the supplements that they are taking, so we can evaluate their ingredients and quality. We also ask patients to bring in all their medications. We often find that patients are taking their medications incorrectly, or the dosage that they noted on the paperwork is not the actual dosage prescribed. In most cases, patients are weighed, and if they approve it, body measurements are taken. Their BMI (Body Mass Index) is also calculated.
There are four optional tests that we have available that most patients find helpful in understanding their starting point. Our nutritionists find this testing extremely valuable in our evaluation of the patient. These tests include Body Fat Analysis, BioPhotonic Antioxidant Scanning, Zyto Wellness Scanning and Meridian Autonomic Testing.