AFTER learning he was overweight during a visit to his doctor, John-David Malta embarked on a 10-month battle to trim down. Eight months later, after not losing weight, John-David asked to be referred to a dietitian at his doctor’s clinic. Together, they discussed a range of food-related health issues, including how John-David could make healthier food choices and limit portion sizes.
Gaining valuable health information:
Two months after speaking with registered dietitian Kari Derbyshire, John-David had lost almost 20 pounds. But in the space of one consultation, he had gained valuable information that he believes will improve his health for many years to come.
“The thing that surprised me most was the importance of checking salt content in food,” he says. “I have a family history of diabetes and heart disease and, because salt increases the risk of high blood pressure, it was good to learn about it.
“Being young, I want to make this a habit so I avoid ending up with either disease.”
While proud of John-David’s achievement, Kari is quick to note that helping patients lose weight is a very small part of a registered dietitian’s work.
What registered dietitians do:
The four registered dietitians within Calgary Foothills Primary Care Network help patients with diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol issues, irritable bowel syndrome and celiac concerns. Over the past year, they saw around 1,400 patients.
“Each session is individualized,” Kari says. “We listen, educate and help people identify small goals they can focus on to achieve the lifestyle changes they want to make.”
To learn more about meeting with a registered dietitian, go to our health team pages.