Ask The Expert: Kristy Bates, RDN

January 30, 2020

Kristy Bates, registered dietitian and nutritionist at Aspen Valley Hospital, on how wise and simple dietary decisions can help improve health and physical fitness.

What are some health benefits one might notice right away by eating more nutritious foods?

One of the first things you notice after making changes — such as reducing dietary sugar and fat or increasing antioxidants and fluid intake — is in your overall appearance. Nutrition can have a significant impact on the quality of your skin, hair and nails. Improved dietary choices can also quickly help treat symptoms of digestive discomfort or chronic digestive conditions. In addition, controlling portions, avoiding alcohol, enjoying a balanced breakfast each morning Quick read more or view full article and choosing healthy snacks can boost energy and confidence, prevent mid-day “crashes” and improve concentration.

For many people, diets are hard to maintain for the long term. What are some strategies to keeping healthy resolutions?

Forget dieting. A lot of evidence shows that dieting does not produce long-term health improvement. Diets, especially fad diets, are rarely sustainable and may be detrimental to individuals and their families. I encourage people to make lifestyle changes, eat mindfully and work with a qualified dietitian to set SMART – specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely – goals to empower them to become their own behavioral change expert. Also, don’t be too hard on yourself. Eat intuitively and rely on hunger and satiety cues to nourish your body.

How can we eat healthier without spending extra money and time?

Healthy foods aren’t necessarily more expensive. Fresh fruits and vegetables can be very affordable, if you become familiar with seasonal offerings. Lower-priced canned and frozen fruits and veggies can be just as nutritious as fresh. Just be sure to read the package’s ingredients list and nutrition fact label to avoid added sugar and excess salt and calories. As far as time goes, you can actually save time once you get in the habit of cooking your own meals rather than eating out. Plus, home-cooked meals are almost always healthier and more affordable than restaurant offerings, and preparing food can be so rewarding!

How can a registered dietitian help individuals improve their health?

A dietitian’s expert advice can focus on prevention or treatment of medical or behavioral conditions. For example, preventive nutritional counseling may focus on athletic performance or healthy aging, while a treatment approach may seek to address concerns with cognitive, digestive or heart health; weight management; food allergies; eating disorders; or medical conditions such as diabetes or cancer.

Tell us about the food workshops you plan to host.

This year, we are ramping up our cooking demonstrations, which will be held on the second Thursday of each month. They will be free to the public and focus on wellness, incorporating whole food recipes, kitchen gadgets and preparation methods. Look for our Dietitian Demos newspaper ads, check the AVH website, or contact me or Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist Lauren Mitchell at 970.544.1145 to join our mailing list. Read Less
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Keeping Critical Care Close to Home

January 30, 2020

AVH receives Level III redesignation

Following its recent successful redesignation as a Level III Trauma Center, Aspen Valley Hospital continues its commitment to providing Roaring Fork Valley residents and visitors with round-the-clock access to emergency care.

“Our patients and their families often tell us how grateful they are for our trauma physicians, surgeons, care teams and facilities; and the redesignation means they will have access to these lifesaving resources,” said AVH Trauma Program Manager Karen Maciejko, RN, BSN. “We are also a designated critical access hospital and exceed Level III state trauma requirements with expanded services such as 24/7 orthopedic coverage and our Traumatic Brain Injury Program with six certified traumatic brain injury specialists.”
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First certified in 1999, the trauma center’s redesignation signals that AVH achieves and maintains strict adherence to rigorous standards for emergency care. Staff works to continuously improve, performing practice reviews, engaging staff across the organization and coordinating efforts with AVH Trauma Medical Director Christopher Roseberry, MD.

Pictured above: Trauma Program Manager Karen Maciejko, RN, BSN.

In important ways, this highly collaborative process reflects AVH’s overall approach to having a trauma care center encompassing the many departments and staff members that touch the lives of critically injured patients.

“Our review team commented positively on the level of engagement and dedication throughout the hospital,” Maciejko said, noting that AVH’s wide-ranging trauma program includes everything from mandatory quality reviews of all trauma cases to ongoing learning sessions for clinical providers, as well as community education programs focusing on helmet use and fall prevention.

“Everyone on the AVH team is so proud to have earned our redesignation as a Level III Trauma Center,” Maciejko said. “We are fortunate that we can continue to provide this crucial care right here close to home.” Read Less
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OrthoAspen & Hospital for Special Surgery: First Year Success

January 3, 2020
2019 was the first of many years in our new relationship with Hospital for Special Surgery (HSS) that leverages the expertise and experience of the #1 orthopedic hospital in the country. In this “year one,” we laid the foundation for our future work together to provide the highest-quality musculoskeletal care for our valley and beyond. We have established a series of priorities that span the continuum of care, from musculoskeletal awareness and education in our community, to wellness and injury prevention, fitness testing and performance, to conservative care, surgical care, and rehabilitation and recovery. We have developed a plan for maintaining the community’s musculoskeletal health, improving quality of life while also reducing total healthcare Quick read more or view full article costs.
We are very proud of OrthoAspen and our surgeons, who are top flight in their respective areas of expertise. Did you know Dr. Kazemi is the ONLY shoulder and elbow fellowship-trained surgeon on the Western Slope? Our goal is to surround our surgeons with the full spectrum of orthopedic services, and the cutting-edge knowledge and research support from HSS. In the process, we can assure you, our community, the highest quality and most comprehensive services to support your active lifestyle are right here in your community, at your community hospital (and at our midvalley campus).
Specifically, this year we accomplished many early objectives, from establishing HSS Grand Rounds and the HSS eAcademy for education of our surgeons and staff; to jointly recruiting senior clinical staff to the OrthoAspen practice; to partnering with our local Skico and Aspen Valley Ski & Snowboard Club (AVSC) to reduce and better manage injuries; to bringing the exciting DARI “markerless” motion technology to Aspen via a “pop-up” experience this spring; to launching the collaborative Sports Safety Program to support local student athletes, coaches and parents; to bringing the latest techniques and technologies to Aspen Valley Hospital and OrthoAspen, and much more.  
All of this work was accomplished by two organizations, working together, with a common and simple goal – to provide the best orthopedic care for our community. That is the essence of a successful relationship – a strong team with a common goal. And the best is yet to come.

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