How Do I Know When I Should See a Registered Dietitian?

The ADA has a new book out, called What to Expect When You Have Diabetes: 170 Tips for Living Well With Diabetes.

Everything that follows is an excerpt from the section, Living Well-Diet and Nutrition.

See a registered dietitian (RD) when your diabetes is first diagnosed, when a new doctor changes your treatment plan, or twice a year for a routine review of your meal plan and goals. See the RD more often if:

  • You want to improve diabetes control.
  • You experience lifestyle or schedule changes, such as a new job, marriage, or pregnancy.
  • Your nutritional needs keep changing (this is true for children).
  • You’ve begun an exercise program or had a change in diabetes medication.
  • You feel bored, frustrated, or unmotivated to use your meal plan.
  • You have unexplained high and low blood sugar levels.
  • You’re concerned about weight or blood fat levels.
  • You’ve developed nutrition-related complications, such as high blood pressure or kidney disease.

    We recommend having an RD on your diabetes team. Ask your doctor or hospital for a referral. You can call the American Diabetes Association (800-DIABETES), the American Dietetic Association (800-877-1600), or the American Association of Diabetes Educators (800-TEAM-UP-4) for referrals. Many RDs are certified diabetes educators (CDEs) and have additional training in diabetes care.

    The above is an excerpt from the book What to Expect When You Have Diabetes, by The American Diabetes Association
    Published by Good Books; June 2008; $9.95 US; 978-1-56148-630-4
    Copyright © 2008 The American Diabetes Association

    To order ADA books, call 1-800-232-6733 or go to the Web bookstore at

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