Christy, a DaVita dietitian from Alabama, shares her gourmet recipe for Sole en Papillote (Sole in Paper) that you can make easily in your own kitchen. Christy faces challenges introducing healthy fish recipes as opposed fried fish recipes for her Southern patients. Luckily, her early career as a sous-chef provides her with tasty solutions her patients enjoy after trying. Sole in Papillote guarantees delicate tasting fish, tender vegetables and delicious, healthy results.
Christy's motto is: "Nothing tastes as good as healthy feels." She explains, "The key to improving health is in following this motto. I can’t take credit for it; I learned it from a wonderful preceptor in my internship, but believing this statement helps me make good choices in my life — and not just food choices. When patients believe this statement, every choice they encounter — whether it’s concerning their diet, remembering their medications, coming to treatments or anything related to chronic kidney disease (CKD) — is easier to make.”
Working in the renal field was Christy's destiny. She became aware of kidney disease and dialysis at an early age. Christy recalls, “When I was in first grade, my friend’s father was on the dialysis. In high school, one of my teachers had a daughter who was a dietitian for a nephrologist. I took a day to shadow her at her job and remembered my friend’s father, and decided that I wanted to help people with CKD.”
Christy's childhood experience gave her a special sensitivity that helps her patients and their families today. "I pretend that everyone in the dialysis chair is my mother, my father or my best-friend, because that person is someone’s mother, father or best friend. This makes it easy for me to relax and be genuine with each patient. I want my patients to know that I care and am not rehearsing lines to get a paycheck,” shares Christy.
In order to give people the best advice, Christy spends time talking with her patients. She states, “Nurses and patient care technicians (PCTs) are taught to look, listen and feel for an access. I look, listen and feel with my eyes, mind and heart to earn my patients’ trust and find out what matters most to them. From there, I can begin to individualize education and give them advice they are capable of following.”
One of the most demanding parts of Christy’s job is finding an alterative to fried foods. “When working in the South, mentioning that fish is a good protein source is always followed by the statement, ‘I only eat fried fish’. So, every month I find a recipe for preparing fish. I try to make it versatile so that it can taste wonderful with the ever-popular catfish. I change the recipe once a month,” says Christy.
Starting her career as a sous-chef has given Christy added knowledge and confidence with her patients. Every time a patient reaches a new goal, or maintains a good level of health, it is a personal victory for Christy. “When I see a phosphorus level that has been high start to come down, the patient is proud, and I love to listen to the patients “brag” about how they did it,” shares Christy.
Christy, her patients and DaVita coworkers try and add fun to their days. “I enjoy the camaraderie. Sometimes I just sit and visit with my patients about anything. Chances for education creep up in any conversation. Our teammates make working at DaVita special. We are striving to become the greatest dialysis company the world has ever seen, and from what I understand, we are succeeding,” says Christy.
Try Christy’s exciting dialysis diet recipe Sole en Papillote (Sole in Paper). It’s a guaranteed way to prepare light-tasting, moist fish and tender vegetables in an easy little pouch. Impress your family and friends with this delicious, gourmet meal.