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Nutrition Informatics Blog

We Need Stories of Digital Dietitians!

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Digital Dietitians—a term coined by Sunnie Southern at FNCE 2012 this year—should include us all!  While it may seem like the only dietitians switching to electronic data are those using electronic health records (EHR), all areas of practice are included.  Be it online nutrition content (and no, it is not an accident that I chose the topic: Nutrition Tips for Women Over 50), use of online nutrient databasessummits on mHealth, or theElectronic Benefits Transfer for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, there are stories on how digital data helped –or hindered the support of nutrition care.  We need stories of what has been implemented, what worked and what didn’t –by specific example—from small or single practitioners to large facilities. Why?  This helps shape future policy, best practices, and justification for nutrition care delivery in the United States.

Hi Carlos - I have a small business and have been using all forms of online resources for about 4 years. I am also the consulting dietitian with (web and mobile app calories/nutrient tracker and diabetes tracker) and I do all of my consulting work for them within an online format. I moderate their Community Forum online - I answer questions about nutrition, exercise, diabetes, and weight control. I also write a weekly blog for them (typically Tuesdays whereas our health journalist posts on Thursdays). I also pin on Pinterest and post on Facebook for MyNetDiary.

When I work with clients 1:1 for my own business or at the clinic where I work PRN, I routinely ask weight control clients to try logging food and activity. If the client owns a smartphone, I recommend that they experiment with a mobile app tracker. Although I consult with and use MyNetDiary to track, I do not actively promote MyNetDiary to clients, especially not my clinic patients due to a conflict of interest. MyNetDiary is presented as one of a number of options, using consumer-rankings from the app store.

I think clients need to decide for themselves which apps to use, but I often recommend that they try a few free apps to see what appeals to them. I also think that the app store's (Android or Apple) user-generated rankings are helpful in terms of user experience.

In my communications, blog posts, and articles, I routinely link to online articles and the sites I am most likely to link to are: Harvard Health, WebMD, Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, American Diabetes Association, American Heart Association, Radio Nutrition, and Cooking Light (for recipes).

Let me know if you would like more information!

Katherine Isacks, MPS, RD, CDE
Posted by: Katherine A Isacks RD CDE( Visit ) at 12/5/2012 12:16 PM

I have always been interested in writing, but never had the nerve or experience to query magazines. So, when I found opportunities to write for web sites, I figured it was at best good experience. That was over 10 years ago.

Little did I know how much this would help when I started a consulting business 5 years ago. Writing for web sites gave me confidence in my writing ability and an internet presence. I never needed to market my new business because my name was already "out there".

I continue to write for my site every month and answer questions on and a few other sites. I advise anyone interested in starting a business to WRITE online. I joke that I put the FREE in freelance writing as I was never paid for writing. But I was paid back later by not needing marketing for my company Sound Bites Nutrition.
Posted by: Lisa Andrews( Visit ) at 12/5/2012 1:53 PM

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