If someone you love has a sweet tooth but also needs to stick to the kidney diet, DaVita renal dietitian Carie from Alabama has the perfect solution. Her Vanilla Wafers with Sweet Cream Cheese Protein Spread makes a satisfying dessert or snack when used to top ordinary vanilla wafers. And because the recipe’s kidney-friendly, anyone can enjoy a sweet, guilt-free treat in just minutes.
Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Carie attended the University of Missouri - Columbia. She says she decided to become a dietitian, because “I love food and healthy living.” And then she began working in the renal field “first, for a change of pace from long-term care, and now I love it and enjoy coming to work every day,” Carie explains.
When asked about the most challenging aspect of her job as a DaVita renal dietitian, Carie replies, “Phosphorus management is challenging, of course. Trying to get people to care enough about their bodies and their families to try their best to manage their health.”
Carie likes empowering her patients and says that the most rewarding aspect of her job is to “see patients leave from initial education feeling confident to go to the grocery store and home to cook foods they actually enjoy.”
This renal dietitian makes a difference in patients’ lives by “trying to be positive for them while they are working towards their goals.” She especially enjoys getting to know the folks she is helping. “What I enjoy most about working with my patients is that everyone is different, and it is great to learn something new from them,” states Carie.
When it comes to the single most important thing patients can do to improve their health, Carie recommends “exercise and switching out soda and processed beverages for water, and substituting one fast food meal for a healthy, home-cooked one, if they eat out a lot.”
Although kidney disease is a serious issue, sometimes a little levity can go a long way to making patients feel better. Carie says, “It is fun to get out our pom-poms and do a cheer with the nurses for patients who have achieved a goal, fun to act goofy and make them smile.”
Carie joined DaVita about 3 years ago and works at a DaVita center in Birmingham, Alabama. The center is downtown near the campus of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, a location, Carie states, where “there’s always something going on.” When asked what she enjoys about working on the DaVita team, Carie replies, “All the staff at our large PD/HHD clinic work together, and I truly like them all.”
We think you’ll like DaVita renal dietitian Carie’s recipe for Vanilla Wafers with Sweet Cream Cheese Protein Spread, a light snack or dessert that’s satisfyingly sweet, and helps boost protein intake.