We want to recognize the important role of the RDN in identifying nutrient deficiencies and working collaboratively with the medical team to treat deficiencies with diet and dietary supplements. We were shocked to read a recent case report in Annals of Internal Medicine, September 2019: Blindness Caused by Junk Food Diet.
A teenager in Bristol England had seen numerous specialists over a period of 5 years who were aware of his progressive loss of sight and hearing. They were also aware that his diet since elementary school consisted of a few low nutrient foods. Dietary supplements and mental health counseling were prescribed. The authors’ objective in publishing the case report was to "alert clinicians of the visual complications of a diet restricted to junk food," noting that dietary causes of blindness are rare in developed countries.
Could a skilled RDN have helped this boy improve his diet and change the outcome? At UNJURY®, we believe that RDNs make a significant difference in patient outcomes every day. Malnutrition and vitamin and mineral deficiencies are reported in developed countries, and are often overlooked by other medical professionals. Skilled RDNs effectively use comprehensive nutrition assessments to make clinical connections between poor diet and physiological changes. They use motivational counseling to help patients find the internal motivation to change the eating behaviors.
Thank you for your tireless efforts to improve the health and nutritional well-being of all!