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What We’ve Been Doing | Food & Nutrition Conference and Expo

Amanda Peterson, RDN, LD | Molly Mills, RDN, LD
November 08, 2019
Amanda and Molly at the FNCE Expo

MUSC Bariatric Program Coordinator, Nina Crowley, and MUSC Bariatric/Telemedicine Dietitian, Molly Jones, have been busy at the world’s largest annual meeting of food and nutrition professionals. This annual conference known as FNCE (Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo) is one of a kind with educational sessions, lectures, culinary demonstrations and over 10,000 Registered Dietitians in attendance.

We asked Nina and Molly about their two favorite sessions…

Nina’s Top Pick

“Glucose Gone Wild: Glycemic Challenges Surrounding Metabolic Surgery”

Background: Metabolic & bariatric surgeries such as duodenal switch, gastric bypass, and sleeve gastrectomy, have earned a place in the American Diabetes Association treatment algorithm for type 2 diabetes due to their improvement in blood sugar levels and ability to facilitate remission of diabetes. However, optimizing blood sugar prior to surgery can be challenging and sometimes people experience hypoglycemia (or low blood sugar) even years after surgery.

Take-home messages:

  • Before bariatric surgery, patients with diabetes should be closely followed by an endocrinologist with a goal to optimize HgbA1c to less than 8 (if possible) prior to surgery.
  • Bariatric surgery can be an effective treatment for type 2 diabetes, but patients require lifelong care that should be coordinated between endocrinology and bariatric surgery teams.
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) after surgery can be managed through changes in eating habits and medication management.

Molly’s Top Pick

“Bariatric Surgery in Teens: For Real? For Real.”

Background: Teens with severe obesity struggle with health consequences more commonly seen in adults, like high blood pressure, sleep apnea and even type 2 diabetes. While metabolic and bariatric surgery is considered an effective tool for adults with obesity, it is less likely to be recommended to adolescents. However, recent outcome studies of adolescents who have undergone bariatric surgery are building the case that this tool can be as effective in teens as adults.

Take home messages:

  • Teens SHOULD be considered for metabolic and bariatric surgery if they have a BMI (Body mass index) greater than 35 with a serious health condition or a BMI greater than 40 with or without a health condition.
  • Teens should NOT be considered for surgery if they have active substance abuse, active psychosis, ongoing bulimia nervosa or severe depression requiring an inpatient hospitalization within the past year.
  •  Adolescent metabolic and bariatric surgery programs should include an interdisciplinary team with a dietitian and psychologist to address important issues such as social support, mindfulness and vitamin/mineral supplementation.

Learn more about MUSC’s Adolescent Bariatric Surgery Program and check out the newly released statement with recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Amanda and Molly are the MUSC Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery Program Registered Dietitians. With 15+ years of experience combined, they facilitate behavior change through nutrition counseling for weight loss and maintenance with children through adults.


About the Author

Amanda Peterson, RDN, LD | Molly Mills, RDN, LD
Amanda and Molly are the MUSC Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery Program Registered Dietitians. With 15+ years of experience combined, they facilitate behavior change through nutrition counseling for weight loss and maintenance with children through adults.
Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery

Keywords: Bariatric, Nutrition, Diabetes, Weight Loss, Adolescents