5 ways a registered dietitian can help

5 Ways a Registered Dietitian Can Help

Counting points, cutting carbs, going gluten-free – never before have there been so many weight-loss and diet programs. Having options is great, but with options comes the difficulty of figuring out what’s going to work for you. Fortunately, there are registered dietitians like Gale Cohen who can help.

Registered dietitians (RD) are well-trained to help you make the changes you need to meet and maintain your nutrition goals. To be an RD, you must:

  • Graduate with a bachelor’s degree from a school that’s approved by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Finish an internship and pass a qualifying exam
  • Complete 75 hours of continuing education every 5 years

And you benefit from this extensive training. “An RD can give you a plan that's personalized and sustainable over the long-term,” explains Cohen.

Weight Loss

The most common reason to seek the help of an RD is to lose weight. An RD can assess your dietary needs and help you create a meal plan. “We can also show you how to shop on a budget and how to prepare food,” says Cohen.

But Cohen wants you to know that weight loss is not the only way an RD can help you or your family.

She shares 4 more areas where an RD can help:

Medical Conditions

Maybe you, or someone you love, have been diagnosed with a medical condition such as hypertension or diabetes. Maybe you’re dealing with a digestive condition such as Crohn’s or celiac disease. All of these conditions are tied to diet, and an RD can work with you to make choices that support your doctor’s treatment plan.

Bariatric Surgery

If you meet the criteria for surgery, you can see drastic weight-loss results with bariatric surgery. But surgery alone isn’t enough. Afterward, you need to revamp how you eat to maintain the results over the long-term. An RD can help you make those adjustments.

Family Issues

Perhaps your child wants to become a vegetarian, is involved with a demanding school athletics program, or might be developing an eating disorder. An RD can work with your kids to make sure they understand the consequences of their choices, and help them eat responsibly as they grow.


Maybe you’d like to begin a new exercise regimen or challenge yourself by training for a marathon. An RD can help you improve your athletic performance by helping you with issues like hydration and balancing your protein and calorie needs.

Updated December 29, 2017

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