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Author Ditsa Keren
Ditsa Keren
Updated on May 24th, 2023
Fact checked by Deborah Leigh

A Holistic Answer to Heal and Manage Diabetes 

How did you come up with the idea of establishing a Diabetes and Nutrition Center?

I worked in corporate healthcare for 18 years. All the while, I cultivated a dream to open my own private practice. I wanted to fill in the gaps of corporate healthcare, by offering a more compassionate and holistic approach, focused on providing support for a person’s health care in its entirety, as opposed to just prescribing meal plans, medications and recommending do’s and don’ts.  

Could you give us some background about how this company was created?

In 2017, I separated from a partnership with a Physician Assistant and decided to go solo. I love working with clients and I am passionate about the services we provide. Early on in the company’s creation, I realized I could not handle administrative functions while seeing clients simultaneously. I hired an assistant, who hasn’t left my side for the past 5 years. She is the glue that holds everything together. 

What causes diabetes?

That is a complicated question.  It depends on the type of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. The body’s own immune system does not recognize the insulin producing cells and begins to destroy them. Type 2 diabetes can be more complicated.  It is heavily influenced by family history. Lifestyle factors, such as adequate access to healthcare, physical activity, stress management and nutrition can impact the risk of developing diabetes.

However, all of the above are much less impactful than what the media would like us to believe. Type 2 diabetes involves multiple systems in the body such as our gut, liver, pancreas, cells, brain and kidneys. 

Are your programs based on specific methods/ traditions or personalized to suit every client's needs?

Care is always personalized to meet each client’s needs. I am a Certified Intuitive Eating and Health at Every Size Counselor, an approach that seeks to de-emphasize weight loss as a goal and challenges the stigma suffered by people who are in larger bodies. I always align both therapeutic approaches to provide the best care possible. 

What kind of diet is best for a person suffering from diabetes? And what kind of dietary restrictions are they subjected to?

Diet is a nasty word and often looks at food as good or bad. Food does not have moral value. Many clients suffering from diabetes are terrified of eating; more precisely about the effects of eating certain foods. So, we work on leveling that out. We work to improve our clients’ relationship with food by using the Intuitive Eating approach.

We do know that carbs can elevate blood sugars.So, we focus on teaching carb sources and involve the client in learning which foods make them feel more energetic and which foods bring them down. Carbs are carbs so the body doesn’t know the difference between candy or an apple. However, we might feel more satisfied by eating an apple. As a healthcare provider, I guide clients to be able to figure out how to manage their food intake to control their blood sugar.  

You talk about Intuitive Eating. Could you explain what it is?

Intuitive Eating (IE) is an evidenced based plan of nutrition healthcare. It was developed by two RDs, Elyse Resch and Evelyn Tribole. It is based on 10 basic principles, ranging from rejecting the diet mentality to paying attention to gentle nutrition. We were all born intuitive eaters.When we were little, we knew what we liked and what we disliked. Unfortunately, society’s and diet culture’s programming has taken over, severing this healthy connection with our body. Intuitive Eating is about getting that back. 

Apart from working with individuals, do you also work with hospitals and organizations?

We do have some corporate contracts that we work with. We have also worked with local hospitals and other types of facilities.

What is one thing that helped you in your entrepreneurial journey that you would do over and over again?

Simply put, listening to my intuition.

Is there anything else you would like to add or highlight, some anecdote or story to share with our readers?

I have witnessed life changing Eureka moments: when people reclaim their innate intuition and are clear about identifying which foods enhance their well-being, which foods give them emotional satisfaction and which foods don’t do much for them.

Individuals that worried about food and spent days obsessing about it are now at peace with their food and body. Individuals that did not feel safe having some types of food in the house to prevent binging, now have 100% access to anything they like. It is immensely rewarding to help people heal their relationship with food and accept their body. After all, we eat to live and our bodies are the vehicles that carry us on our journey. So, it’s pretty basic to live at peace with both.

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