Author: drdevongolem (Page 3 of 5)

How to Show Passion in Your Personal Statement: Two Vital Mistakes to Avoid

how-to-show-passion-in-your-personal-statement-graphic

It is important to reveal passion in the personal statement, but many applicants go about this the wrong way.

They make two vital mistakes:

  • 1) they emphasize duration of interest; and/or
  • 2) they describe their passion.

Duration of interest does not reveal depth of interest.

-Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD

Many applicants highlight the length of time that they have been interested in the subject/field.  “I’ve been interested in the magic of nutrition ever since I was 4-years-old.”

qtq80-nTcfNt

Readers do not care how long a person has been interested…they care how much a person is interested.

With this in mind, many applicants make the second vital mistake…they describe their passion and all the surrounding beliefs.

Nutrition is at the root of health.  If people eat well, they live well.  Changing my diet not only changed my health, but it also changed my way of thinking.  Eating healthy does not mean compromising taste.”

Including one or two of these statements are okay, but, remember, you are preaching to the choir.  Most of the readers, if not all, are nutrition professionals and have dedicated their careers to the field.

qtq80-ScHPyw

 

Some of them see robust descriptions of the ‘power of nutrition’ as romanticizing the field…indicating that the applicant is not aware of the practical side.

 

How to reveal your passion

If someone is really interested in something, they get as much experience and exposure as they can. Beyond the requirements, what have you done that reveals that you are passionate about and dedicated to the field?

Of all the work and volunteer experience, involvement in professional and student organizations, side projects, community efforts, and more that are listed on your resume…what are a couple of experiences can you mention?

qtq80-RGnUih

The best way to reveal your passion is to follow a statement of interest with examples of effort and experience.

“I have a strong interest in diabetes. While working at So-and-So Diabetes Camp, I gained exposure to several diabetes management techniques and learned from experienced endocrinologists.”

“I am very passionate about pediatric nutrition.  As a dietary aide at the Best Children’s Hospital, I learned many aspects of pediatric nutrition, food-service, and shadowed dietitians providing nutrition counseling to children and parents.”

Use this strategy to stand out from the rest!

To get more amazing tips like this, consider the DI Application Crash Course or the Personal Statement for DI Applications course (which is the personal statement section of the crash course).

 

Also, consider the Developing Your Career Plan course.  It’s always a good time to plan the next few years of your career.  Knowing your plan makes applying easy.

What Does Success Look Like To You?

what-does-success-look-like-to-you-graphic

Success has different meanings to everyone.  Yet, many people use the same general words to describe it.  

It is important that we take the time to ponder our own personal definition of success…to be able to imagine what it looks like and feels like.

Envisioning the end is enough to put the means in motion.

-Dorothea Brande

The benefits of being able to imagine the ‘look and feel’ of success are numerous. But, mainly:

  • You will know exactly what you are working to achieve.  
  • You will be able to determine how to achieve success.
  • You will know when you are experiencing success.

Here is an activity that will help you imagine your personal success: “A Day in the Life of Successful You”

  1. Set aside 20-25 minutes in a quiet place where you can be alone.
  2. Off the cuff, start describing a typical day in your successful life.
    1. You wake up and what do you see? What do you do? Who do you interact with? 
  3. Take time to describe how you feel.
    1. physically
    2. mentally
    3. emotionally
    4. spiritually
  4. Take a mental note of the aspects which are important to you. 
    1. For example: nature? family? money? health? laughter? stability?
  5. Summarize the look and feel of living during this day of success.

qtq80-Lq1ww9

   Many people that I have taken through this activity have recognized that their prior definition of success was too vague and not tangible.  Some have mentioned that they were chasing the wrong definition of success (i.e. money instead of daily happiness). 

    Complete this activity many times to feel more confident in your personal definition of success.  And remember, that all achievements begin as thoughts.

A person can grow only as much as his horizon allows.

-John Powell

Complete this and many more activities in the Developing Your Career Plan course at www.icenp.org

Download the FREE guide: “4 Areas of Focus to Enhance Your Nutrition Career” and get the Professional Insights newsletter.

About the Author:  Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD

Dr. Golem is the founder and CEO of the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals.   She earned a PhD in Nutritional Sciences at Rutgers University and has worked as a registered dietitian in a variety of settings.  Connect with her on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter

Join one or both of her LinkedIn Groups: Nutrition Professional Resource Group and Dietetic & Nutrition Students & Interns

Stop. Drop. & Career Plan

stop-drop-and-career-plan-graphic

One question I am often asked is:

“How do I know if I should change my career plan?”

  Truth is, asking this question is somewhat of a telltale sign.  A career plan should be revised as your experience, skill set, and mindset are revised.  Here are some general instances when it is time to…

STOP…DROP…and CAREER PLAN

  1. You recognize new barriers.
  2. You developed a new interest.
  3. A new opportunity arose.
  4. Your life or circumstances have changed.
  5. You are generally unhappy with your current job.

qtq80-aR89TY

New Barriers.  As you work more in the field and observe the ups and downs, you become more cognizant of barriers that you need to overcome to achieve your goals.  These barriers can include systemic issues such as workload injustice or pay inequalities.  They can also include personal barriers such as weaknesses in technological skills or reduced ability to influence others. 

I know it may sound weird, but identifying new barriers presents a wonderful opportunity for your career.  It means that you are aware and learning.  It reveals new targets for improvement.

  When you recognize new barriers, it is time to revise your career plan.  You can develop goals and plans to overcome these barriers!

 

New Interests. With more exposure to the profession, you will invariably gain new interests.  Your level of interest will range.

range_of_interest

 The higher your level of interest in a new aspect of the field, the greater your need to revise your career plan. 

  You may need to completely revise your career plan to include this new-found interest.  Or, you may have already mentioned this interest, but need to make tweaks to your plan to ensure emphasis.  Either way, time to take out the ole’ career plan.

 

New Opportunities. We cannot always anticipate the future and new opportunities can fall into our laps.

Side Note: Sometimes it seems as if life ‘does not go according to plan’, but often plans aid in the development of situations that lead to new opportunities. 

qtq80-Yw9KeE

Perhaps a new job opportunity or a promotion places you on a new path.  Side jobs and volunteer activities can turn into full-time opportunities.  Deficits or needs at work can turn your focus in a new direction.  These situations may make you want to throw plans to the wind, but…

…flexible plans will help you make the most of new opportunities.

  You already recognize that your career plan is flexible and grows with you.  Take full advantage of this opportunity by incorporating it in your plans.

 

qtq80-aCBfTxLife Has Changed. By now, you are seeing a trend.  Life has a way of ‘throwing curve balls’.  Whether expanding your family, relocating, or developing a health issue…flexibility and growth are key.  Revising your career plan will help you determine the ways in which life changes have influenced your values and goals.

Your career plan is not just about working.  It’s about planning for life balance.  It’s about setting up your career to be one avenue in which you can act on your values and purpose.

In other words, your career plan is designed to ensure that your career adds meaning to your life as opposed to distracting you from your life.

 

disappointed_You Are Unhappy.  Whether you work full-time or not, unhappiness at work is not limited to work hours.  It bleeds into all hours of your life.  So, unhappy at work = unhappy in life.  It is time for a change!

But, change does not always come to those who wait.  No, your best bet is to plan for change.  Revitalize your sense of purpose and your plan to get there.  Revise your career plan today.

developing-your-dietetics-career-plan-course-graphic

COMING SOON! Develop a Career Plan course – Get step-by-step guidance through developing your career plan. Get notified of the course launch and get an exclusive deal.

This course includes an audio/visual lecture module, workbook, and career plan template.  Answer the questions, complete the activities, and see the examples…before you know it, you will have a career plan that sets you up for success.  

To be notified of the course launch (est. December 6th), get on the notification list.

 This course will be worth 5 CPEUs for registered dietetic professionals and certified dietary managers, but is useful for anyone who wants to feel fulfilled in their career.

Want even more? Sign up for the Professional Insights newsletter and get your FREE copy of ‘4 Areas of Focus to Enhance Your Nutrition Career‘.4-areas-that-will-enhance-graphic-6 

Do You Have Implicit Weight Bias?

do-you-have-implicit-weight-bias

    Weight bias…it’s a real problem, especially in the nutrition profession.  The quickest way to ruin a nutritionist-patient relationship is to have negative attitudes or beliefs about weight status.  Talk about a big no-no. 

   But, did you know that a lot of the weight bias out there is implicit?  This means that many people do not even know that they hold any weight bias.  They inadvertently are impartial to individuals with a higher weight profile. 

“Well, how would you know if you have implicit weight bias?” you ask.

   You’re in luck…I am going to share a couple of ways that you can use to identify your level of implicit weight bias. 

qtq80-Poo2RB

  1. Ask yourself a series of questions:

When looking at someone’s weight appearance, do I make assumptions about…

  • their character? (i.e. lazy, lack willpower, lack self-control, etc.)
  • their health status? (i.e. insulin resistant, systemic inflammation, advanced atherosclerosis, etc.)
  • their lifestyle behaviors? (i.e. unhealthy diet, sedentary, stressed, etc.)

What are the reasons for my beliefs?

Is there evidence to support my beliefs?  Is there evidence that negates my beliefs?

Regardless of my personal beliefs, do I give the same attention, care, and respect to patients of all sizes?

  1. Take this online evaluation

Project Implicit® is a non-profit project-implicit-logoorganization run by researchers interested in all sorts of implicit social thoughts.  Go to their “virtual laboratory”, agree to the consent statement, and select the Weight IAT (Implicit Attitudes Test).  You will answer a few questions and then play a few hand-eye coordination games. 

   If you take some time to answer these questions honestly and take this online test, you may find that you have some implicit weight bias.  Do not be alarmed.  As they say “knowing is half the battle” and you can work to make some changes.

“What can I do about it?” you ask.

  You can increase your awareness and knowledge.  

   To learn more about the different types and effects of weight bias as well as how to address it in your practice, take the Weight Perceptions course.  Quickly earn 2 CPEUs and help create a healthy environment for you and your patients. weightperceptions

Learn more about weight bias to be the best nutrition professional you can be.  Check out the other available courses in the catalog at the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals (www.icenp.org).

 

About the Author:         Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD 

DSC_2591-Edit

Dr. Golem is the founder and CEO of the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals.   She earned a PhD in Nutritional Sciences at Rutgers University and has worked as a registered dietitian in a variety of settings.  Connect with her on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter

Join one or both of her LinkedIn Groups: Nutrition Professional Resource Group and Dietetic & Nutrition Students & Interns

Download the FREE guide: “4 Areas of Focus to Enhance Your Nutrition Career” and get the Professional Insights newsletter. 

How to Address Concerns About Dietary-Induced Cancer

does-eating-this-cause-cancer-graphic

If you are a nutrition professional, then you may often find yourself addressing the media-induced health concerns of patients and clients.  With the wealth of nutrition miscommunication out there, it is no wonder that many people are afraid of getting cancer from a variety of food products.

This happens often.  Concerns about qtq80-7YYXI8carcinogenic substances in our food and water are real and should not be trivialized.  However, how do we know if there is enough evidence to justify every concern?

How do we know if a food causes cancer or not?

What do we tell any patient or client who reads these scary claims?

As nutrition professionals, we can reference evidence-based recommendations and evaluate the available research.  But…

Do you ever find that you do not have time to complete a literature review on all the claims that are brought to you?

qtq80-8Ze9fG

Rest assured…there are wonderful resources for you, the nutrition professional, to reference.  Other experts have done the leg work for you.  All you need to do is read then use your judgment and communication skills.

One great resource for the scientific literature on substances that are questioned to cause cancer is the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).  More specifically, their monographs on the evaluation of carcinogenic risks to humans.

iarclogo Take a moment to look at these two examples that are commonly claimed to be cancer causing:

Glyphosate

Carrageenan

Use your professional judgement to determine if there appears to be substantial evidence supporting the claims.  Remember to look at the populations studied, the doses, and duration of exposure, and the size of the effect.

Many people take the presence of evidence to be a cause for alarm.  They do not realize that a great deal of applicable evidence needs to be available before guidelines are developed and recommendations are provided.

For example, observations from studies evaluating effects of herbicides on agricultural workers should not be directly translated to the public.  Obviously, the agricultural workers would have greater exposure for a longer duration.

When warranted, use evidence from sources such as the IARC to deescalate an anxious situation and refocus a patient’s attention back to well-known, unrefuted healthy behaviors.

 The IARC is not the only credible resource, but it is a great place to start.  

To learn about other wonderful professional resources, sign up for Professional Insights newsletter and download a free guide to the ‘4 Areas of Focus to Enhance Your Nutrition Career’.

DSC_2591-Edit

Connect with Devon on LinkedInFacebook, and Twitter.

Request to Join one of her LinkedIn Groups:

 

Why Some People Choose Fad Diets Over Nutrition Counseling

why-some-people-choose-fad-diets-over-nutrition-counseling

 As nutrition professionals, we consistently learn and lecture that fad diets are not beneficial, could be detrimental, and should not be followed.  And research evidence supports these claims. 

However, the public is not listening.  

     Mainly because this is not what they want to hear.  Part of the reason that fad diets are always going to be so popular is because they provide an answer.  Not necessarily an easy, effective, or healthy answer, but an answer nonetheless.

So, if fad diets appear to provide an answer, then authorities opposing fad diets appear to provide the opposite of an answer…which is a problem. 

qtq80-3aWAurFor example, Suzie wants a weight loss solution.  She comes across the “no white foods” diet which is purported to help her lose weight and be less moody. She also finds a blog written by a dietitian that ripped the “no white foods” diet apart and recommends nutrition counseling for weight management. 

Which way do you think Suzie is going to go?

    Most nutrition professionals will tell you that Suzie picks the “no white foods” diet because she doesn’t care about research evidence and wants an easy fix.  This is true. 

  We are evidence-based practitioners working in a culture where empirical evidence is not prioritized above anecdotal evidence and promises.  The priority to nutrition professionals may be nutritional health while this is not the case for most people looking to fad diets for an answer. 

Although there is validity to this concern, this is only part of the problem…there is another aspect that is often overlooked by nutrition professionals. 

disappointed_

The main issue involves errors in professionalism and tone.  It’s all in the way in which the nutrition professional presented herself. 

Suzie would choose the fad diet over the dietitian’s sound advice because she does not perceive the dietitian to be the expert in this scenario.  Instead the dietitian that tore apart this fad diet comes off very negative. 

This emotional negativity overwhelmed the sound advice.  

So, how do we address fad diets without compromising our ethics?

  To be perceived as the primary experts, nutrition professionals need to maintain positive sentiments and remain empathetic.  We do not need to compromise our ethics in order to recognize the motives, skills, and preferences of our patients. 

   As opposed to discouraging the use of fad diets, find commonalities and encourage healthy behavior change.  Strong discouragement of fad diets should be reserved for times of nutritional risk.  Let’s face it…most people can maintain nutritional health and avoid white-colored foods. 

   In other words, we need to use fad diets as a tool.  The simplest way to make the best out of fad diets is to find common ground and work from there. 

To learn about the positive aspects of fad diets, read: Why Some Nutrition Professionals Do Not Discourage Fad Diets.

4-areas-that-will-enhance-graphic-6

 

For more professional strategies, sign up for Professional Insights newsletter and download a free guide to the ‘4 Areas of Focus to Enhance Your Nutrition Career’.

 

 

The Author: Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD

DSC_2591-Edit Dr. Golem earned a PhD in Nutritional Science with an emphasis in Exercise Science from Rutgers University.  As the founder of the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals, she is dedicated to helping nutrition professionals become their best.

Connect with Devon on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

Request to Join one of her LinkedIn Groups:

Why Some Nutrition Professionals Do NOT Discourage Fad Diets

why-some-nutrition-professionals-do-not-discourage-fad-diets-anymore-graphic

There are over 6000 fad diets published online and a review of these has revealed some themes that nutrition professionals would appreciate:

  1. The Importance of Dietimportant

Fad diets have done our field a favor by supporting the notion that diet influences many aspects of life.  Compared to those who would never think of changing their diet to feel better, people who reach to fad diets are contemplating the connection between diet and body.  The authors of fad diets undeniably connect dietary intake with physiology…although the devil is in the details.  Be aware of this broad perspective and use this connection to help your patients.

  1. Dietary Awarenessqtq80-b4zoEq

All fad diets require that followers be aware of the food they are consuming.  Many who try fad diets become aware of their previous eating patterns, their specific food choices, and alternative choices available to them.  This is a great opportunity for nutrition professionals to encourage further awareness and increase dietary knowledge.

  1. Behavior Changeqtq80-9fcHdT

In one way or another, fad diets have dietary limitations and allowances.  Whether it be specific foods that need to be avoided or times in which consumption can occur, followers are learning skills related to dietary behavior change.  Some of these diets are extremely difficult to follow, but aside from the specific details, followers are gaining experience with behavior change, even if it is only temporary.

  1. Dietary Planningqtq80-ErzHLs

Many fad diets require a lot of planning to maintain compliance.  This provides the followers with practice developing grocery lists, looking up menus before eating out, and planning alternatives when eating away from home.  Fad diet followers often learn to use planning as a technique to overcome barriers to behavior change.  Again, these are all desirable skills that will come in handy when working to make dietary changes for life.

It is time to eliminate the notion that nutrition professionals are negative nay-sayers that will not work around the preferences of their patients.  Progressive nutrition professionals recognize that not everything is in black or white.  Do not choose righteousness over relationships.  Try to see things from the perspective of fad diet followers and help them build on the skills that they have already acquired.

 

For more professional strategies, sign up for Professional Insights newsletter and download a free guide to the ‘4 Areas of Focus to Enhance Your Nutrition Career’.

4-areas-that-will-enhance-graphic-6

 

The Author: Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD

DSC_2591-Edit Dr. Golem earned a PhD in Nutritional Science with an emphasis in Exercise Science from Rutgers University.  As the founder of the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals, she is dedicated to helping nutrition professionals become their best.

Connect with Devon on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

Request to Join one of her LinkedIn Groups:

How a Fruit Can Help You Manage Your Time

how-a-fruit-can-help-you-manage-your-time-graphic

 

          Ever find yourself pulled in too many directions? If you are a person who has too many tasks to complete in too little time, you are not alone.  Many people feel the stress of multiple deadlines and the overwhelming feeling of information over-consumption.  I am going to tell you about one time-management technique that is going to bring calm to your over-stressed schedule.

What technique could be so useful? you ask. 

The Pomodoro Technique

   Developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980’s, this technique is named after one of our favorite fruits.   That’s right…Pomodoro means tomato in Italian.  It is possible that Cirillo explains his reasoning for using a tomato in his books, but all you need to know is that each tomato represents 25 minutes of uninterrupted time.

The steps of the technique:

  1. Decide on one task that you need to complete.
  2. Set a timer for 25 minutes.
  3. Work on that task for the duration of the 25 minutes without any interruptions or interference.
  4. Mark where you are in the task when the 25-minute alarm rings.
  5. Take a 5-minute break.
  6. Decide whether you are going to move on to another task or complete another Pomodoro with the same task.
  7. After 4 consecutive Pomodoros take a longer break (~15-30 minutes).

qtq80-ErzHLs

Manage Tasks

       The purpose of the technique is to break down your tasks into manageable pieces while taking small breaks often to improve productivity.  The more you use the technique, the easier it is for you to determine how many Pomodoros a task typically takes…which allows you to schedule your time more efficiently. 

Manage Timeqtq80-s3R3jC

   The ability to schedule work accurately allows for the ability to take advantage of free time.  This technique is one of the best to promote work-life balance.

Manage Effortqtq80-gAOe6Y

    This technique also helps you maintain focus and limit the distractions that have seemed to take over all of our lives.  Turn off your ringer, close your email, lock your door and spend a minimum of 25-minutes on an important task.  It is amazing what you can do when you are focused. 

   Nutrition professionals are not known for being disorganized or inefficient.  However, many of us are overachievers and over-commit.  Using this technique will change the way you view your schedule and your work. 

Give it a try and see the benefits today. 

To read more, visit the official Pomodoro technique website: http://cirillocompany.de/pages/pomodoro-technique/

For more professional strategies, sign up for the Professional Insights newsletter.

The Author: Devon L. Golem, PhD, RD

DSC_2591-Edit Dr. Golem earned a PhD in Nutritional Science with an emphasis in Exercise Science from Rutgers University.  As the founder of the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals, she is dedicated to helping nutrition professionals become their best.  

Connect with Devon on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

Request to Join one of her LinkedIn Groups:  

Getting Your Raise

getting-your-raise

The information that you need to know to get a raise can also be used to negotiate your starting salary.  Keep in mind that the higher your starting salary, the more you make in general.

But, say you were hired at a fair wage and think it is time for a raise.  Or maybe it has been a long time since your last raise…here are the steps you need to take before approaching your employer.

1. Determine the raise schedule.qtq80-ZclwJb

Many companies and organizations have a salary schedule that includes a plan for promotion and raises.  If your desire for a raise does not align with this schedule, chances are you will be sore out of luck.

This is something to identify right away.  Speak to your supervisor or HR representative and get this information.  Typically, this schedule aligns with performance reviews, but not always.  Find it out and ask for a raise at the appropriate time.

2. Complete background research.qtq80-sOgzlN

There are many external factors that influence the probability of a raise.  Do some background research to gain information about the field/profession, market, and your employer.

Go online and find answers to the following questions:

  • What is the salary range for your profession at your experience level?
  • What is the status of the overall market? (Good? Bad? Stable?)
  • What is the financial status of your employer/company? (Growing? Declining? Stable?)
  • What is the salary of similar professionals working for similar employers?

There are a lot of online resources including the Bureau of Labor Statistics as well as private companies that create personalize salary reports for a fee (e.g. salary.com, payscale.com, glassdoor.com, etc.).

3. Get to know yourself.qtq80-zB3WgZ

It is important that you know where you have been, where you are, and where you want to be.  Answer the following questions to start learning more about yourself.

  • What is your current salary?
  • What is your final desired salary range for this position?
  • How many years of experience do you have in this position?
  • What percentage increase was your last raise? When did this take place?
  • What is the lowest acceptable percentage for your raise? What is the highest appropriate percentage for your raise?  (Come up with a desired raise range.)
  • If not money, what else would you accept as a raise? (more time off? work remotely? stock options?)

(Keep in  mind that a percentage increase is referring to the percentage of your salary.  For example, if you made $50,000 and received a 5% raise, you would then earn $52,500.)

4. Determine the reasons you deserve a raise.qtq80-ZGX5kj

If you cannot justify receiving a raise, then you do not deserve one.

Time passing by is not a good reason to earn a raise.  Your actions and achievements during that time is more important.  Be ready to justify your value to your employer by answering these questions:

  • How was your last performance review? (If you did not have one, review yourself.)
  • How did you address any issues identified in your last performance review?
  • Since your last raise, what were the major achievements that warrant another raise? (More responsibility? projects? awards? certifications? training?)
    • What have you done to save your employer more money?
    • What have you done to make your employer more money?
  • What are your strengths? (Be prepared to mention a specific example for each.)
  • How did your strengths contribute to your employer/company since your last raise?

Higher pay comes to those who know what to ask for, when to ask for it, and why they are asking.  If you can positively address each of these areas, then you can get your raise.

qtq80-Yw9KeE

Most employers recognize the need to acknowledge great employees.  This is not a time to threaten your employer and give them an ultimatum.  (If you are at that point, then a raise may not be what you are really looking for.).

If you feel that you are performing above your pay grade, then prove it to your employer and be prepared to compromise!

 

D Golem at Podium with FlagDevon L. Golem, PhD, RD is the founder of the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals.  She has spent over a decade providing education and career guidance to nutrition students, interns, and professionals.

Connect with Devon on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.

Is it time to revise your career plan?  Click here to learn more.

 

Advising Parents About Grocery Shopping With A Child With ADHD

advising-parents-about-grocery-shopping-with-a-child-with-adhd

The trip to the grocery store is one of the biggest challenges faced by parents of children with ADHD.  Applying behavioral strategies and involving children in the food selection process can be extremely valuable in setting them up for a lifetime of healthy choices.  They can learn about planning ahead, organizing lists of needs, and selecting foods based on budget, preference, and nutritive value.

Here are 3 effective strategies to teach parents of children with ADHD when it comes to grocery shopping.

qtq80-aZxg1BMake a list and stick to it.

Involve the child in the planning process by having them help make the grocery list at home.  Children learn from example and need to see the thought process that goes behind making a grocery list.

  1. Determine the period that this grocery trip is going to cover: 1 week, 2 weeks, a special occasion.
  2. Staples: Which foods are staples that always need to be purchased? What is the rate of consumption of these foods?  How much will be purchased?
  3. Meals: What will the breakfast, lunch, and dinner meals consist of for this period?  Which foods are needed for those meals?  Have the child/children help with food inventory…”how much cereal do we have left?” Involve the children in food selection for the meals.
  4. Coupons/Discounts: Children can also learn about budget by finding coupons for items on the list.

qtq80-pSsj8FDiscuss healthy food choices.

All parents and children know that fruits and vegetables are healthy.  Yet, they rarely talk about it.  One strategy to get children with ADHD focused on healthy eating is to talk to them before and during the grocery store trip.  Peruse the grocery list and count the number of fruits and vegetables.  Older children can rate the healthiness of each.  Allow the child to select fruits and vegetables that are appealing to them.  Incorporate one at each meal.  Explain the need to eat more than 5 per day.  Set expectations for your child.

qtq80-UGqotOMake grocery shopping fun!

Children with ADHD can easily become distracted, irritated, or unsettled when they are not engaged.  Engage the child with small tasks such as a scavenger hunt for the cheapest Greek yogurt, allowing them to select one new fruit or vegetable for the whole family to try, or encouraging them to select all the items for one meal that they want to help prepare.  This kind of engagement ensures that they are involved in the process, that their opinion matters, and prevents them from being entertained by the food marketing that is directed to them.  This strategy increases the amount of fun that they associate with grocery shopping.

When kids are having fun, parents are having fun!

Most parents who approach nutrition professionals with questions about nutrition and ADHD are expecting information on nutrient therapies and advice on elimination diets.  They are elated to learn that nutrition counseling spans to include dietary behaviors and food environments.

Behavioral modification strategies for both parents and children are needed to ensure nutritional health for the whole family. So, parents need to learn these strategies.  Nutrition professionals can not only discuss this with parents, but can demonstrate on a grocery store trip.

To learn more about nutrition interventions (nutritive and behavioral) for children with ADHD, take the Nutrition & ADHD course (2 CPEUs)  or the Nutrition & ADHD course bundle (10 CPEUs) at the Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals.  These courses provide a background on ADHD, a review of the evidence behind specific nutrients and ADHD, as well as a discussion on several nutrition behavioral strategies to implement in nutrition interventions.  The bundle also provides experience with real-life ADHD nutrition interventions.

Great nutrition professionals include nutritional considerations into their nutrition interventions.  Do not be left out, learn how to help families eat better today.

Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals

Institute of Continuing Education for Nutrition Professionals

© NOVEDGO 2016

Page 3 of 5

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén