King's diabetes dietetics service
At King’s College Hospital Diabetes Dietetics Service, diabetes specialist dietitians provide nutritional assessments and dietary advice and support to patients with diabetes. Assessments generally review clinical information, including whether the patient is on oral medication, insulin or both; body weight, blood glucose, lipids and also physical activity. Nutrition information is assessed by looking at meal and snack distribution throughout the day, the food choices that the patient makes, as well as the typical amounts that are consumed. Overall dietary balance is observed to see how closely the dietary patterns matches dietary guidelines and general nutritional adequacy is also assessed to detect any dietary surplus or deficiency.
The willingness of the patient to change their diet is also assessed, with a view to referring the patient for psychological therapies where necessary. Dietary education is then tailored to the patient, often done with negotiation, to make it practical and realistic for the patient to implement in their own lives. Written information summarizing the key messages which the patient can then take home and refer to later is usually essential.
Providing dietary advice is an ongoing, interactive process between patient and dietitian which is usually delivered in various stages. The aim is that patients learn to understand the many factors that affect the glycaemic response to foods. Patients will be able to increase the variety of foods that they may have been previously restricting. They will also learn how to tailor their insulin to their food to improve glycaemic control. Medications can be discussed that may be an adjunct to their control or weight management and this will have a bearing on the foods that are suggested or chosen.
Who Is the Service For?
The service is for patients residing in Southwark who are diagnosed with: type 1 diabetes, including those who are newly diagnosed, require education on carbohydrate counting, or are on insulin pump therapy; type 2 diabetes and poor diabetic control or complications, or those who require weight management intervention; children and adolescents; pregnant women, including those with gestational diabetes or pre-existing diabetes; patients requiring nutritional support; patients with nephropathy; and patients with coeliac disease.
Contacting the Service
Diabetes specialist dietitians are based at the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, King’s College Hospital. Dietary advice is provided through one-one consultation and in group settings.
Healthcare professionals can either refer patients directly to the dietetic service, book patients into a future clinic slot, or send a written referral letter to:
Michelle Daniels or Anita Beckwith
Tel: 020 3299 1812 ext 4712
Post: Department of Nutrition and Dietetics
King’s College Hospital
London SE5 9RS