Practice Blog

To share practice related stories, create connections and engage readers in the amazing diversity of dietitian experiences.


Sports dietetics: A behind the scenes look into international events

Past Canadian Olympic Committee Performance Dietitian Kelly Anne Erdman shares the challenges and triumphs of working with Olympic athletes.

KAEHS1.jpgKelly Anne Erdman, MSc, RD, CSSD is a lead performance dietitian for the Canadian Sport Institute Calgary. She worked as the Canadian Olympic Committee performance dietitian for three years. Now, she works with national team athletes from Hockey Canada, long track speed skating, luge, athletics and sledge hockey, to name a few. Kelly Anne instructs coaches at the National Coaching Institute Calgary, as well as in private practice at the University of Calgary Sport Medicine Centre.

As the Canadian Olympic Committee performance dietitian from 2011-2014, I have many interesting stories to share. I was with Team Canada during the Pan Am Games, and the London & Sochi Olympics (referred to as Games). The following is a collection of eye-opening insight into what goes on behind the scenes when it comes to fueling athletes at international Games events. continue reading

Reflections on practice in dysphagia management: An influential new role paper is published

The lead author of the new role paper, “Defining the Role of the Dietitian in Dysphagia Assessment and Management,” shares why this paper is so important to her and many other dietitians.

HSJG1.JPGJennifer Hemeon Garus is a professional dietitian and the Nova Scotia Dietetic Association’s executive director. She has practiced in a wide range of roles and settings, including long term care, an outpatient clinic, homecare, telehealth, private practice, public health, and industry. Jennifer applies her dietetic practice experience to her current role in professional regulation. Her interest in Dietitians of Canada’s new role paper overlaps with her role in professional regulation that addresses scope of practice issues and competencies in dietetic practice.

The recently published Dietitians of Canada role paper, “Defining the Role of the Dietitian in Dysphagia Assessment and Management,” was written to reflect the RD’s current role in this area. Work on the DC paper began early in 2014, with a review of the literature and other professions' role papers in dysphagia assessment.

With the draft versions of the paper having input from over 30 dietitians, this paper clearly reflects current practice across Canada. continue reading

An enlightening dietitian sorts the science from science fiction

A dietitian addresses misinformation in the media.

RosieHS1.JPGRosie Schwartz is a consulting dietitian and author of The Enlightened Eater's Whole Foods Guide. Her passion for enlightening her clients with real evidence-based information led to her series of Enlightened Eater books. Rosie has been writing about enlightened eating for more than 20 years and is currently a columnist for Parents Canada and Diabetes Dialogue magazines. She is also a frequent contributor to the Medical Post newspaper. Visit her website, or find her on Facebook and Twitter.

Enlightened eating can indeed be a daunting task. We are constantly bombarded with confusing nutrition messages. Studies about nutritional issues are often reported in the media without any context and consequently, can add to the confusion. Sorting the science from the science fiction has become increasingly difficult. My blog, Enlightened Eater, allows me to address these issues head on and engage with my readers and clients directly. 

I recently addressed an interview of Nina Teicholz, the author of The Big Fat Surprise, on CBC's The Current. continue reading

Accidentally inventing a food product – you could do it too!

PCHS1.jpgPatricia Chuey is a BC-based dietitian and food communications expert known as The People’s Dietitian. In 2014, she was awarded Fellowship in Dietitians of Canada and an Alumni of Influence award from the University of Saskatchewan for her work in encouraging Canadians to live healthy. A diagnosis of celiac disease, followed by a frustrating quest to find a tasty, nutritious gluten free flour, suitable for baking, led to Patricia becoming a food developer. She can be reached through or on Facebook/Twitter @PatriciaChuey.

One of the best things about being in a line of work that impacts 100% of people on the planet, with the subject matter being food, is that the opportunities to support consumers in their quest for well-being seem endless. I often describe a dietitian’s career path as being like a beautiful fruit tree with a solid root base of science and food education that goes on to branch out in many directions as it grows. As an entrepreneurial dietitian, watching my branches grow has felt far more like play than work. continue reading

Column concepts: What goes into writing a regular nutrition column?

JenSygo1.jpgJennifer Sygo, M.Sc., is a registered dietitian and sports nutritionist with Cleveland Clinic Canada, and the nutrition columnist for the National Post. Her first book, Unmasking Superfoods: The Truth and Hype Behind Acai, Quinoa, Chia, Blueberries and More, was published by HarperCollins Canada in 2014 and reached best-seller status.  You can reach her at, on Twitter at @JenniferSygo, or visit her website at

I started writing the nutrition column for the National Post in 2007 while working at Cleveland Clinic Canada.  Since then, I have written about 250 columns that have appeared online and in print, on topics ranging from eating disorders to the importance of bees to our food system.

I currently write two full-length 600-800 word columns per month, as well as an online feature, called "Nutrition Bites," which provides a short answer to a common or timely nutrition question (e.g. "do I really need eight cups of water per day?"). Starting in 2015, I’ll also be filming a series of video columns for the National Post website.

Initially, I spent quite a bit of time writing and editing each column... continue reading

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