The Benefits of Having a Registered Dietitian on your Interdisciplinary Care Team

What makes an interdisciplinary care team?

When thinking about health, one might initially think of each aspect of health separately - a dentist for dental health, a mental health therapist for your mental health, and a primary care physician for general health. While these healthcare providers tend to focus on specific areas of health, it’s important to know that several healthcare roles create an interdisciplinary care team that works together to improve your overall health! Building the best team to meet your specific health needs may take time.


That's why at Married to Health, it is our mission to utilize the best in medical nutrition therapy to bridge gaps in nutrition and dietetics. We strive to bridge the gap by teaching methods to health maintenance, disease prevention, and in some cases, even disease reversal! Because every patient is unique, it’s also important to know that healthcare providers are not a one-size-fits-all role. When building an interdisciplinary healthcare team, here are some key qualities to look for:

  1. Clear values and direction

  2. Mutual respect and understanding

  3. Good communication skills

  4. A culture of trust

  5. Variety of skills and competencies

  6. Patient-centered focus (you are the boss!)

  7. Training and development to further knowledge

  8. Mutual goal of patient success


How does a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) fit into your team?


Because diet plays such a significant contributor to your overall health, having a Registered Dietician Nutritionist (RDN) part of your interdisciplinary team is critical, especially if you are managing chronic gut diseases such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Reflux, and more. Much like primary care physicians, RDNs have specialities that range from renal, gut health, to pediatrics. An RDN will guide you through improving your overall health through diet, exercise, sleep, and lifestyle choices. They understand that there are several external factors (other than your diet) that impact your gut health, and can help you identify and improve them. For those who are struggling with difficult topics such as allergies and sensitivities, body image, and their relationship with food, a RDN can play a crucial role in your overall health.


Research has shown that life satisfaction, value, and sense of purpose is best achieved when a patient is accompanied by a dietitian that has similar philosophies. Because Married to Health is a plant-based dietetic practice, we introduce our patients to a plant-based lifestyle. Unlike several non-health professional bloggers, we use research-based practices in order to ensure the safety of our patients. As dietitians, we understand that research-based practices have the most positive health outcomes for our patients (no fad diets here!). While this may seem intimidating for many, dietitians are trained to guide patients step-by-step through their journey to a #GoodGut.


Interested in having an RDN on your care team?


If you are interested in starting your unique journey to a #GoodGut, we would love to support you! Upon scheduling a personalized visit with us, we will discuss your current habits, future goals, and draft a plan to help you achieve them. At Married to Health, we love working with other members of your interdisciplinary team, and would be happy to refer you to primary care providers, gastroenterologists, physical and mental health therapists, OBGYNs, and even dentists! We look forward to supporting your health journey and are so excited you are here!



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References

Farfaglia-P., Pickett-Bernard, D., Gorman, A., & Dephalavn, J. (2017). Health Philosophy of Dietitians and Its Implications for Life Satisfaction: An Exploratory Study. Behavioral Sciences, 7(4), 67. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5746676/

Herrington, H., Araujo, P., & Doerfler, B. (2020). The Role of the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist in a Lifestyle Medicine Program. Creating a Lifestyle Medicine Center, 181-200. https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-030-48088-2_16

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