Frequently Asked Questions
What is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist?
A Registered Dietitian (RD), also known as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), is a healthcare professional that is an expert in food and nutrition. Dietitians work in a variety of settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, health clinics, universities, research facilities and private practice.
What is the Difference Between a Dietitian and a Nutritionist?
Dietitians have to meet academic and professional requirements set by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. This includes a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in dietetics, completion of a supervised practice program, passing a national exam and completing continuing education credits to maintain registration.
The term “nutritionist” is not regulated, so anyone may refer to themselves as one. A nutritionist may or may not have in-depth knowledge and experience in the field. Be cautious when taking advice from a nutritionist, especially if they are trying to sell you products such as supplements or meal replacements.
What is a Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist?
A Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist (CDCES), previously known as a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE), is a healthcare professional who possesses comprehensive knowledge of both diabetes prevention and management. A CDCES educates and supports people with diabetes to help them understand and manage the condition.
CDCESs are generally nurses, dietitians or pharmacists. To become a CDCES, these professionals must obtain continuing education credits, pass a national exam and have a minimum of 1000 hours of working with people with diabetes or prediabetes.
Will my Health Insurance Cover Nutrition Counseling?
Your health insurance company may cover nutrition counseling. It is often covered with no expense to the client even when there is an unmet deductible. Amy can assist you to find out this information for your specific insurance plan.
For co-pays, co-insurance and out of pocket expenses, a variety of payment options are available. If you have a health spending account such as a Health Savings Account, Health Reimbursement Arrangement or Flexible Spending Account, nutrition counseling may be considered a qualified medical expense.
What if I'm not located in or near Niagara County?
Telehealth continues to be an option for nutrition counseling and Amy is licensed in all of New York State. You do not need to come to the physical location for an appointment.
What Should I Expect at Appointments?
At the first appointment, a full assessment will be done. You will be asked about your medical history, physical activity, what you normally eat and what you would like to accomplish. Then, you and Amy will come up with specific goals to work on.
If you have diabetes, many other topics may be discussed as well. General diabetes questions can be answered, diabetes medications will be discussed, and if you check your blood sugars at home your readings will be reviewed. If you have an insulin pump or continuous glucose monitor those will be reviewed as well.
Follow up appointments will be scheduled as they are important to keep you accountable and make sure you are headed in the right direction. At follow up appointments, previous goals will be discussed and the plan will be adjusted as needed. These appointments are for YOU—so bring your questions regarding nutrition, food and your medical conditions.
Is Amy Available for Presentations or Other Services?
Yes, in addition to one-on-one nutrition counseling, Amy is available to speak at events such as diabetes support group meetings and corporate wellness seminars. She is also available for healthcare provider education. Contact her for availability and further information.
Does Amy have Products and Services for Other Dietitians?
Yes, Amy has different resources and services available for dietitians.
For information on dietetics, private practice and insurance billing, visit Dietitian Direction.
If you are a dietitian looking to purchase some of Amy's handouts, go to Amy's RD2RD Store.
If you are creating self-study continuing education credits for dietitians, Amy is a Item Writer for the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) as has taken the Professional Test Question Training.