What to Expect
The thought of seeing a dietitian for the first time can be a little anxiety-provoking for many people. This might happen if you've never been to see a dietitian before or if you're going to a different dietitian for the first time. Some clients have told me that they were a little nervous at their first appointment and that they were relieved when I didn't tell them that what they're doing was all wrong or that their favourite foods are now off-limits. For this reason, I thought it might be a good idea to put a page here to let you know what to expect.
My approach does not involve judging your choices or telling you what to do. I've been doing this a long time and I have learned that in order for me to be effective at my job (which is helping you achieve your goals), I need to keep an open mind. So, knowing this, I ask for your trust and your honesty. We are a team and we each have unique perspectives.
Our first session together is a longer one (60 minutes), to allow us to get to know each other. Prior to this appointment, I will send you an intake form, which you will need to complete and return to me at least 24 hours prior to your appointment. On this form you will answer questions regarding your hopes from our counselling sessions, your health goals, medical history (including chronic diseases, medications/natural health products and laboratory results) and typical daily intake (in the form of food recall). By completing this form in advance, it allows me to prepare for your appointment so we can make the most of our time together. During the initial visit, I will ask you some questions regarding the answers you provided. Since eating is not just about the nutrients, we will also talk about some of the social, cultural, financial, and emotional issues that may be impacting your eating. Before you leave, I'll make some recommendations and then together we will make a plan.
Follow up sessions are 30 minutes (or up to 45 minutes if you choose to do this by phone). During these sessions, we'll discuss how you are doing with the goals you set at the previous session. If you feel you're not accomplishing your goals I will work with you to identify roadblocks. Change is not easy, or linear. Whatever barriers have come up will likely continue to present themselves, so it's good to try and figure out what they are.