Regina Ragone

"I finally made it to Broadway, Mom!"

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RDN Day Contest Winner?!

When I first got the call I was perplexed and surprised. I won a contest for writing an essay? What contest? What essay?

As the caller continued to explain the details, though, I slowly begin to remember. Every March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics promotes National Nutrition Month. As part of those efforts, the Academy celebrates Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day on the second Wednesday of the month (this year was March 13). That day, according to the Academy, "was created by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to increase the awareness of registered dietitian nutritionists as the indispensable providers of food and nutrition services...and commemorates the dedication of RDNs as advocates for advancing the nutrition status of Americans and people around the world."

Every year, the Academy sponsors a contest for RDN Day in which members are asked to respond to the question: "How does your work help to solve the greatest food and nutrition challenges now and in the future?" The representative from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, who was on the other end of the line, reminded me that I had entered the contest and, furthermore, informed me that I was this year's winner! Not only that, I would be featured on an electronic banner that would appear over New York City's Times Square in honor of National Nutrition Month and Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day!

Solving the greatest food and nutrition challenges

As you can imagine, it was very exciting to receive the news. I was honored and appreciative for the opportunity to represent registered dietitian nutritionists, who are committed to helping people enjoy healthy lives. And what about the winning response to the contest entry question, the response that got my name and image up in lights on Broadway? Here was my reply:

"Given today's interest in all things food, consumers are savvier and more confused than ever. RDNs are in the perfect position to guide them through this new food terrain so that they can make good choices every day. People are desperately trying to balance their food wants and needs: They want to cook more, make better nutritional decisions and be mindful of the larger social issues, like food waste. RDNs also have the knowledge to simplify today’s complex foodscape, showing consumers how to plan and prepare their meals to improve their family's health while preserving the planet’s precious resources."

Happy Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day to all RDNs!

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