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Crock-Pot® Chicken and White Bean Chili by Tammy from Missouri

DaVita renal dietitian, Tammy from Missouri, believes good health is one of the keys to happiness. How you feel has a lot to do with how you eat, whether you are on dialysis or not. When it comes to feeling good and being healthy, Tammy says, “There's no better place to start than the food you put into your body.” It’s no surprise that people get  a lot of happiness from food. Tammy shares, “Food is the universal language that brings people together!”

Even on a dialysis diet, there are many foods you can enjoy. The goal is to focus on what you can eat and not about what is restricted. Tammy feels that motivating patients to make changes can help them enjoy eating and feel better. However, the patient is ultimately in control. Tammy believes the most important thing patients can do to improve their health is, “Be proactive!” She adds, “I tell patients, ‘I care about your health, but no one cares more about your health than you do.’”

Tammy has found the technique of motivational interviewing to be an interesting new way to help patients come up with their own solution to a problem they may be having. Motivational interviewing helps patients to change their behavior based on their own motivation. For people who think that dietitians are the “food police," this type of counseling is the complete opposite. With motivational interviewing, Tammy helps her patients see a better future. She creates a strategy to assist her patients to think differently and consider the benefits of change.

One of the reasons motivational interviewing is so successful for Tammy is that she has built strong bonds with her patients. Being able to create relationships with patients is what led her into the renal field. Tammy supports the healthy behaviors of her patients by sharing yummy foods that make them happy.

In addition to serving dressing for holidays, make Quinoa Dressing to celebrate delicious meals throughout the year. 


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