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A Food Plan? Just What the Doctor Ordered!

Experts urge evaluation of diet at medical checkups.

Healthcare dietary assessment

Since unhealthy dietary patterns are a leading cause of poor life quality and early death from chronic diseases, it’s about time for routine healthcare visits to include some form of a rapid dietary assessment tool, according to a scientific statement from the American Heart Association, published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

The statement, written by a group of nutrition and cardiovascular disease experts, says dietary patterns and quality are still not adequately addressed during patient visits with physicians. It could be for lack of training or time, so designing a quick, valid, evidence-based diet assessment to evaluate diet could provide a reliable framework to help primary and specialty healthcare professionals incorporate diet screening into their workflow. The end goal is targeting actionable dietary changes in patients to improve health outcomes.

See also: Docs Need a Prescription for Nutrition 101

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD, is a James Beard Award–winning food journalist, dietitian and author of the cookbook Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sport + Adventure (VeloPress 2016). He has written for dozens of magazines, including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Shape, Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness.

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