And... There goes my summer. In a good way! I opted to intern with the hospital I work in for the summer with the Food and Nutrition Department.
It has been a wonderful month so far, working on various projects ranging from creating handouts about healthy snacks for a group of hikers and bikers to making a monthly nutrition board outside the cafeteria. I have also been shadowing some of the Dietitians. They work with different floors and each have a slightly different way of working their routine and educating patients.
Most recently, I have been shadowing an outpatient Dietitian a few buildings over. It's quite a different setting. The patients are generally healthy, and they come to you on their own time. Many of them are bariatric patients who have elected to undergo surgery, like gastric bypass or the sleeve gastrectomy (in which the stomach is reduced to about 25% of its size by surgical removal). But some of the patients are normal patients that just want to lose weight, and others need intensive treatment due to cancer.
Yesterday, The Clinical Nutrition Manager and I were involved in a Health Fair at Kittery Trading Post in Maine.
We had cups of sugar cubes representing the amount of sugar in commonly consumed energy bars and beverages - which really put in perspective the amount of sugars hidden in these seemingly "healthy" items. I wish I had a close up picture of this! We also had a "body fat analyzer." A handheld device that sends a small harmless electrical current through the body in order to determine body fat percentage. A lot of people seemed to want to try it!
Whether I end up working in the hospital, outpatient, grocery store, or even for myself - this internship brings me one step closer to Erika Peace, RD LD.