Consider These Counseling Tips
Educating patients during a consultation is the single most important service pharmacists can offer. What follows are several weight-management counseling points for patients with diabetes:
> Encourage patients to eat a whole foods diet. "If it doesn't walk, swim, run, come from the ground, and it didn't exist 100 years ago, don't eat it," said Harris. In other words, enourage patients to avoid processed foods and any foods that have chemical ingredients that "you would need a PhD to pronounce."
> Educate patients on how to eat for weight loss. Madison recommended that pharmacists drive home to importance of limiting noncomplex carbohydrates and avoiding foods high in sugar. Proper fluid intake is also important.
> Groom the patient for success. "Making lifestyle changes is more easily said than done for people whose lifestyle is not currently aligned with these recommendations," Bisher cautioned. "This is why I always recommend starting off with small changes, so the person can feel successful implementing them." For example, focus on adding foods that are more ideal for their situation rather than suggesting the complete avoidance of certain foods.
> Consider the patient's work schedule, home environment, sleep schedule, social interactions, and stress management. Discuss these factors with the patient and adjust their wellness plan accordingly.
> Encourage patients to get moving. Madison stressed that patients should aim for a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity 5 days a week. Harris enacted the 20-8-2 method, which has patients sit for 20 minutes, stand for 8 minutes, and then walk for 2 minutes.