A newly released study states that “people with intellectual and developmental disabilities have poorer health outcomes and are more at risk for a number of secondary health conditions compared to nondisabled people.” (Friedman, 2019) This year the St. Louis Arc has set a goal of implementing a broad Nutrition Initiative focused on promoting healthy eating and wellness strategies specifically designed for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, their families, and support staff.
New Wellness Initiative
Katharine Rug, the Arc’s Director of Nutrition, will be leading this new wellness initiative. On Wednesday, March 20 the Arc’s family workshop series is hosting “Nutrition and Health – Ask the Dietitian” Katharine Rug, the Arc’s Director of Nutrition will provide tips and tools for people we support and their families. Katharine is a registered dietitian (RD) and has her Master’s degree in Medical Nutrition Therapy with an emphasis in pediatric nutrition from Saint Louis University. She has worked for the St. Louis Arc since 2011, starting in Employment’s summer programs while in college, then moving to a full-time position in 2013 after receiving her bachelor’s degree in neuroscience and psychology. Using an evidence-based approach, Katharine will direct and coordinate all aspects of food and nutritional programming across the agency.
The March workshop will be tailored to address the nutrition needs and health concerns of those in attendance. We encourage individuals and families to sign up ahead of the workshop. For families who have RSVP’ed we ask for you to complete an online survey in order to identify nutrition topics of interest. Potential topics of interest may include food selectivity, healthy choices, fluid intake, and supporting bowel health. We look forward to hearing from you and are excited to present on topics that apply to your daily life.
Katharine has already made a significant impact on services at the Arc. She has worked closely with our training team to implement healthy cooking classes into staff training’s and she looks forward to working directly with Arc families in this upcoming workshop.
Learn more about the new study on Diet and Nutrition for People with IDD:
Friedman, C. (2019, January 4). Diet and Nutrition for People with IDD. [Blog Post]. Retrieved from https://c-q-l.org/resource-library/resource-library/all-resources/diet-and-nutrition-for-people-with-idd