Lauren Talbert RD, CSO, LDN
BOARD CERTIFIED SPECIALIST IN ONCOLOGY NUTRITION
for somtehing nutrishus
Lauren heard about the series through the Oncology DPG (Dietetic Practice Group). She has specialized in her area of practice and must love her work as she says she lucked out and found her dream job. As she mentions, it will be interesting to see where research goes as new evidence will continue to influence nutrition practice and recommendations in the future.
Why did you become a RD?
Because I wanted to help improve the quality of peoples lives through nutrition education. Also my grandmother passed away from stomach cancer and since then I had an increased interested in oncology nutrition.
What area of dietetics do you work in?
Oncology but I also cover maternity, GI (gastrointestinal) and DM (Diabetes Mellitus) clinics.
How would you explain what you do?
I teach people how to make healthier choices based on their specific lifestyles and goals. I also motivate, encourage and support people to make nutrition a priority. I do a lot of public speaking so I’m sort of a cheerleader for nutrition!
What are your ‘typical’ daily/weekly tasks?
I typically figure out which patients to see (complex system I have developed), meet with them and then write notes. I also teach a weekly nutrition wellness class that I am always working on. I present to health care professionals and patients so I also am typically working on a talk. I precept dietetic interns. I have been interviewed in the past about nutrition (recently I was featured here) and also have written articles in newsletters highlighting programs or events that I have hosted.
What has been your career path?
I went to college at University of Vermont, completed my internship at brigham and women’s hospital in Boston and then luckily landed my dream job in Providence, RI at Women and Infants hospital.
What advanced education or special training do you have?
I am one of 4 board certified oncology dietitians in the state and I am super proud of that.
In an ideal world, what does the industry look like 5 years from now?
I think there is a lot more to learn about probiotics and their benefits, habits of health (schedules, sleep, stress, times of eating/not eating) and benefits of a plant based diet.
What misinformation about RDs would you like to clear up?
We do MORE than tell people what to eat and avoid.
What would you like people to know about RDs?
We like unhealthy foods too! I love pizza.
What are challenges you encounter as a RD?
Not everyone thinks about nutrition or it’s importance as much as they should (we need more referrals!).
What do people think that you do for a living?
Teach people how to eat healthy.
What are you passionate about in dietetics?
Oncology, probiotics, fasting
What makes RDs unique/different from other nutrition/wellness professionals?
We are much more than educators, since nutrition can be a very personal issue/concern- we also act as social workers at some points in our jobs. The biggest difference is that we are certified!
What is your favourite meal?
Pizza or a fresh salad with salmon
What tip(s) would you give to our readers?
Eat more plants!
Anything else you’d like to add that you feel would be valuable:
I would encourage readers to get creative with produce, google recipes and try new ways to eat them other than salads and steaming them. Try zoodles, cauliflower rice, kale salad, smoothies with spinach or even just roast a ton of veggies at the beginning of the week to have for lunches/dinners!