Multi-Disciplinary Team Work
I work as a medical nutrition therapist and “systems navigator”. In the latter role I develop systems to support and serve a person with an eating disorder.
Systems development includes:
- Making sure there is an interdisciplinary team in place to provide outpatient treatment. Communicating and coordinating care within that team. Providing education to the outpatient team.
- Educating support people, including family, spouses, significant others about eating disorders and facilitating them becoming supportive to the person with an eating disorder.
- Working with the team to make sure outpatient treatment is the best option.
- Working with schools to develop supportive entities within the school to keep recovery on track. Such supportive entities may include educating teachers and training meal companions.
- Working with treatment centers around the country to ensure communication and smooth transition to and from the facility.
- Developing college contracts between families and student health services
Nutrition Therapy Includes:
- Assessing current dietary intake, eating patterns, and food related thoughts and rules
- Assessing exercise levels and titrating calories as exercise is advanced
- Working with mental health professionals to assess food issues and co-morbid conditions related to the eating disorder
- Providing behavioral therapies related to food and nutrition to encourage changes in food intake
- Computer nutrition analysis of dietary intake
- Providing the team with current research findings about eating disorder treatment
- Educating families and significant others about eating disorders and what to expect in treatment
- Monitoring progress of patients and providing continuous support
- Providing information about nutrition supplement needs and drug/nutrient interactions
- Advising about diets for certain metabolic complications such as insulin resistance, reactive hypoglycemia, food intolerances and allergies which can all occur alongside an eating disorder
- Supporting patients when goal weights are reached and monitoring stability in the maintenance phase of treatment
- Locating community resources to support recovery
- Use of Cognitive Behavioral and Acceptance and Commitment therapy approaches, along with other therapy & educational techniques to foster eating behavior changes and flexible food related cognitions