One of my favorite things to tell people that they get every year through their health insurance is 3 (or more) sessions with a registered dietitian! Yes, your health insurance covers nutrition. These sessions have ZERO co-pay meaning they are 100% covered through insurance. You may be thinking “No way, this is way too good to be true.” Actually, the vast majority of Americans qualify for this. Here’s how it works and what to expect from your annual nutrition check-up with your dietitian.
We all have been raised in a culture where seeing your doctor once a year is “a good idea”…but what about nutrition? Did you know that the average medical school in the United States does NOT provide nutrition to our future doctors and it actually has been this way since the very beginning of our medical school existence?!? …Yikes.
So there it is. Your average doctor knows very little about nutrition. And if the average American human’s diet was made up of kale and sunshine…maybe this wouldn’t really be a problem. But unfortunately, the foods that average American consumes these days is made up of pizza, buffalo chicken wings, maybe a beer, a sandwich and lots of other highly processed foods. What is wrong with processed foods? Well, here is where it can get complicated in a lot of different ways. The more we process a whole, natural food (such as the sunflower oil in our crackers instead of whole, pure sunflower oil in our sunflower seeds) the more we see an increase in inflammation, diet-related disease and overall higher rates of weight gain, obesity, and a dissatisfaction with how we are eating.
It was in 2008 that the U.S. finally started putting it all together and put into law the idea that Americans should have better access to high-quality nutrition care. Meeting with a registered dietitian under your health insurance means you are meeting with a nutrition expert. Did you know that the title “nutritionist” can be used by absolutely ANYONE in the United States? Yes, its true – your mother is a nutritionist (regardless of what food trauma horror stories she taught you), your mailman is a nutritionist…even your trash guy – he’s a nutritionist too. There is absolutely NO regulation in the United States behind the title Nutritionist. Even if someone throws a big fancy specialty word in front of it… like “Metabolic Nutritionist” or “Precision Nutritionist”…these titles have no meaning. It’s kind of like stating when a food is labeled “dairy free”…but its actually just a sugar packet…yet again, another misleading “yikes”.
So yes it’s pretty great that, if you have health insurance, you can work with a Registered Dietitian every year at least 3 times a year to improve your overall eating game. So how exactly does it work?
The first thing to know is that insurance will cover your sessions with an RD as long as they are in your “network”. What this means is that the dietitian you work with needs to go through the credentialing process with your health insurance company, sign a contract, and then submit claims to your insurance company on your behalf in order to be reimbursed financially for the services and expertise they provide to you. Currently, INC Nutrition is contracted with UnitedHealthcare, Cigna, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, Triwest Healthcare Alliance. For those who have Medicare as an insurance (either primary or secondary) INC Nutrition can also work with those who have diabetes or kidney disease. For all others the qualifications for coverage are as follows:
You have a BMI of 25 or greater (You can check your BMI here: https://www.calculator.net/bmi-calculator.html )
You have any labwork that indicates an increased risk in heart disease – which includes
High blood pressure
High fasting blood glucose
High cholesterol (or too low of the good cholesterol!!)
Other conditions that will qualify you for sessions with a registered dietitian include:
Obesity – a BMI of 30 or greater (https://www.calculator.net/bmi-calculator.html )
Metabolic disease – this is diagnosed by your doctor
Fatty liver disease
An eating disorder
Celiac disease (you will need a referral from your doctor)
Well, there you have it. All the info you will ever need to connect with an intelligent, professional nutrition expert. If you are looking for someone who is a good fit for you – someone who will hold your hand and walk with you through your own gentle nutrition journey – We have multiple dietitians who are eager and waiting for you!!! Click the link HERE to schedule a discovery call with someone who will listen to your food story and help you become the hero of your own journey: https://www.incnutritionllc.com/booking-calendar
We CAN’T WAIT to work with you!