Helping people make healthy lifestyle choices is what Pratt Regional Medical Center's dietitian Stephanie Becker, RD, LD does every day. As a registered and licensed dietitian, Becker works with people inside and outside of PRMC. "I'm willing to speak to groups, businesses and organizations about how to make healthy choices," Becker said.
Just over the past year Becker has been a guest speaker at several groups and organizations including a local middle school.
"I spoke to the students about how to make healthy choices when it came to choosing what to drink," Becker said. "Young people may not realize the health hazards that come from drinking too many of the popular energy drinks. Most people want to do what's good for them, but often they don't know that what they are doing is unhealthy, so education is important to making smart choices."
While out and about in the community, Becker has learned that many people have turned to the internet for advice on health.
"The internet has a lot of information, but not all of it is reliable," she explained. "There is no such thing as a quick fix to losing weight, but if people would make healthy choices at least 90% of the time, they could really savor the foods they treat themselves to periodically that are not as healthy. If you celebrate your birthday every day, it's not as special as that one time celebration."
So many people are juggling work and family on top of being involved in extra things. It is easy to go through a fast food drive-through or snack on something from a vending machine. "Healthy meals can be prepared quickly, but you have to plan ahead. There are some healthier choices at the restaurants and fast food places in town, if you look for and ask for them." Speaking to groups about how to plan for and prepare healthy meals is one the topics she speaks about.
Diabetes is a chronic disease that many people are living with. A diabetic's health can depend on what they choose to eat. For those who have diabetes, Becker often recommends recipe websites such as:
Inside the hospital, you can find Becker visiting patients during the lunch hour. "I like to visit the patients at meal time and see if they are happy with their meal, or find out if they are having trouble eating on their own." She also spends time one-on-one with patients who are referred to her by their primary care physician for either diabetes education, weight loss, or other diet issues.
Becker participates in care plan meetings with the patient care staff at PRMC and Pratt Rehabilitation and Residence Center. Becker provides consulting services for Kingman Community Hospital, Stafford Community Hospital and Wheatlands Health Care Center, a nursing home and assisted living center in Kingman.
If you belong to a group, club or organization and would be interested in learning about making health lifestyle choices, please contact Stephanie Becker at (620) 450-1425.