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Pam Bartlo is a clinical associate professor at D’Youville College, Vice President of the Cardiopulm Section of APTA, and a Cardio pulmonary PT at Mount St Mary’s Hospital.

We take a look at an interdisciplinary study she did with 3 registered dietitians about online nutrition information for people with type 2 diabetes. 

They looked at the quality of websites providing nutrition information for people with diabetes and then the accuracy of that information.

Here’s what they found:

  • Overall there weren’t a lot of websites that came up with diabetes nutrition search terms – 34 sites total to analyze.
  • 85% of the sites analyzed were quality websites based on Healthy People 2020 quality website crtieria.
  • None of the sites had >75% accuracy of the nutrition info provided based on the American Diabetes Association’s Medical Nutrition Therapy Guidelines.

Why does this matter to Physical Therapy?

As PTs, especially in outpatient or cardiac care, we should be providing at least basic nutrition information to patients with diabetes.  It is important to know whether we can rely on websites to help augment or complete that education.  Based on these results, Professional Organization websites could help augment that nutrition education, but will not be accurate enough for full education. Therefore, we should work with our Registered Dietician or licensed Nutritionist colleagues to complete nutrition for individuals with diabetes.

  • Many people look online for information about nutrition and it may not be accurate.
  • Professional organization websites were the most accurate.
  • It is most important for patients to have in person consultations for nutrition education for diabetes.

Connect with Pam:
Twitter: @bartlop
Instagram: @pambartlo
Facebook: @PamBartlo

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