ATTENTION HOPES Patients: HOPES operations for all locations will be closed on July 4, 2024 to observe the holiday.

 ATENCIÓN Pacientes de HOPES: Las operaciones de HOPES en todas las ubicaciones estarán cerradas el 4 de julio de 2024 para observar el feriado.

March is National Nutrition Month

March is National Nutrition Month. This year’s theme is “Fuel for the Future.” Eating with sustainability in mind is a tasty way to nourish ourselves during every phase of life and protect the environment. At HOPES, our Registered Dietitian, Kate Ault, and our medical providers can help you create healthy habits that are sustainable and celebrate your unique needs.

Eating healthfully doesn’t have to be complicated! Choose nutritious foods for your kids that have vitamins, minerals, fiber and other nutrients. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to nutrition and health. We are all unique with different bodies, goals, backgrounds and tastes.

Learn more about HOPES Nutrition Services from Kate as she shared her perspective on the health and wellness benefits our patients have access to through our nutrition and wellness programs.

How does HOPES’ Nutrition Program Help Our Patients?

Having a Nutrition Program at HOPES is just another example of how HOPES provides wrap-around care for patients! We aim to support patients in every aspect of their life that affects health, so it is only obvious that food (one of life’s basic necessities) should be included. For example, if someone is newly diagnosed with diabetes, high cholesterol or is overweight they are invites to see a Registered Dietitian/Certified Diabetes Educator on-site and under the same umbrella as their sliding fee scale (if they do not have insurance). Our Dietitian also see patients who are under weight, have food insecurity or who just need to talk to a professional instead of looking up a diet on the internet.

Why is it beneficial for HOPES patients to access nutrition services onsite?

“As a Registered Dietitian working at HOPES I feel I have many advantages over other dietitians working in the community. Because of our electronic medical record, I have access to Primary Care Provider notes, patient lab values and can see all the medications my patients takes. Out in the community, I would need to ask patients to bring me all of this information before I could truly assess their medical nutrition therapy need. This is complicated, requires ROIs and often just plain doesn’t happen in the community. I also find at HOPES it is common for conversations about nutrition to lead to discussions about food insecurity, lack of medication use because of cost, or other life stressors that affect eating and health. I have had a significant number of people who are struggling with their weight (especially since the pandemic) and in talking we realize it is related to depression and/or anxiety. Thankfully, HOPES has support for these social determinants of health. I often utilize behavioral health and case management integration to provide patients with the resources they need to help with these and other aspects of their life.”

Do pediatric patients access nutrition services?

YES! We saw 186 patients under the age of 18 in 2020. We see a great deal of children struggling with childhood obesity and parents that don’t know what they can do to help. The HOPES Nutrition team has embraced a philosophy called 5210, which is an evidenced based program that encourages 5 fruits and vegetables every day, 2 hours or less of recreational screen time, 1 hour or more of physical activity and Zero(0) drinks with sugar/choose more water. This is important because we want to focus on positive changes families can make to improve their health as a whole. We are NOT putting children on strict diets and ARE sensitive to use words that do not promote body shaming or hyper fixation on weight.



Related stories

April 10, 2024 is National Youth HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. HOPES provides wrap around services to our youth population who have an HIV diagnoses
HOPES is thrilled to welcome our three new board members Maria Sandra Jimenez, Ph.D., Susan Fisher, and Katelyn Cantu! They will help play a vital role in HOPES' strategic vision, bringing more access to medical and behavioral health care to our community.