Once a diagnosis of CSID has been made, it is important for the patient/caregiver to work with a registered dietitian (RD) to review dietary restrictions and to develop an understanding of food content, food labels, and ingredients. Finding foods that are appropriate for a patient with CSID can be difficult and time-consuming. Many patients and parents/caregivers find the process of starting on a CSID-friendly diet overwhelming at first. Consulting an RD will assist in this process.
RDs are experts in food and nutrition who have met both academic and professional requirements. RDs can be extremely beneficial for a patient with CSID. Most RDs have not worked with many patients with CSID specifically, but they can advise patients and caregivers on basic nutritional requirements. Understanding your or your child’s nutritional needs is of vital importance. An RD can assist you in determining nutritional needs, learning how to read food labels, developing a diet plan, and learning how to maintain dietary compliance for patients with CSID.
RDs work in a variety of settings including hospitals, public health departments, and community health settings. Your/your child’s gastroenterology practice may have an RD on staff. If not, the gastroenterologist should be able to refer you to a local RD. Alternately, you can find an RD on http://www.eatright.org which is the website for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
Often, your insurance will cover the cost of an RD consultation, or your child could qualify for nutritional services through a state-sponsored program. It may be beneficial to perform an Internet search for “healthcare for children with special needs” and adding your state name to the search terms. For example, a Google search for “healthcare for children with special needs Michigan” yields many results. Also, some young children with CSID may qualify for medical nutritional therapy as part of their state’s early intervention services.