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Sunday, March 5, 2017

March is Nutrition Month

(Public domain photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons)
Pat MacIntosh, Dietitian, Alberta Health Services - March is Nutrition Month! Dietitians everywhere are promoting healthy-eating messages to help you meet your nutrition goals. Dietitians are uniquely qualified to provide nutrition advice. They have completed a four-year university degree in nutrition and a year of internship. Dietitians are health professionals regulated by the College of Dietitians of Alberta.

Only individuals registered with the College of Dietitians of Alberta can legally practice using these protected titles in Alberta: 
  • Dietitian 
  • Registered Dietitian 
  • RD 
  • Nutritionist 
  • Registered Nutritionist
  • Provisional Dietitian
  • Dietetic Intern 

The public can be confident that the nutrition advice received from these professionals is reliable. 

In the 2015 Tracking Nutrition Trends survey, 88 per cent of those surveyed saw dietitians and Health Association materials/websites as the most credible sources of nutrition information. However, only 20 per cent of respondents consulted with dietitians in the previous 12 months. The survey also found that almost half (49 per cent) of Canadians get their food and nutrition information from the Internet, social media, or blogs.

What are your nutrition goals? According to the same Tracking Nutrition Trends survey data, Canadians rated ‘Maintaining Good Health’ as the most important factor (86 per cent) when making their food choices. 

The other top three factors for making food choices are:
  • Weight management (67 per cent) 
  • To get energy or stamina (62 per cent) 
  • To live longer (62 per cent) 

Dietitians want to help you maintain good health and find the healthy eating information you are looking for. For easy online access to nutrition information go to: www.healthyeatingstartshere.ca. You will find many healthy eating handouts, recipes, and other resources to help you reach your goals. Other reliable sources of nutrition information can be found at: www.dietitians.ca and www.myhealth.alberta.ca. Registered Dietitians provide one-on-one nutrition counseling for all ages.

To book an appointment with a registered dietitian, call your local community health office. Happy Nutrition Month!

Pat MacIntosh is a Dietitian with Alberta Health Services Nutrition Services. She can be reached via e-mail, Patricia.MacIntosh@ahs.ca

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