ADA pushes nutrition therapy

Supermarket pharmacy operators last month received validation for the growing number of diabetes educators and dietary nutritionists walking their aisles. In the Oct. 9 issue of Diabetes Care, the American Diabetes Association recommended all people with diabetes make nutrition therapy a part of their treatment plan.

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This position statement replaces the nutrition therapy recommendations for the management of adults with diabetes published in 2008. The 2013 statement provides a set of recommendations based on review of recent scientific evidence. It calls for all adults diagnosed with diabetes to eat a variety of nutrient-dense foods in appropriate portion sizes as part of an eating plan that takes into account individual preferences, culture, religious beliefs, traditions and metabolic goals. Since people eat food and not single nutrients — such as carbohydrates, protein and fat — the report includes a new section on eating patterns.

That’s much more complicated than a one-size-fits-all plan, which makes a trusted nutrition resource at the local supermarket all the more valuable.

“Just because you have been diagnosed with diabetes does not mean you can no longer enjoy the foods you love or your cultural traditions,” stated Alison Evert, coordinator of diabetes education programs for the University of Washington Medical Center, Diabetes Care Center. “Ideally, the person with diabetes should be referred to a registered dietitian or participate in a diabetes self-management education program soon after diagnosis.”

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