DaVita renal dietitian Shannon from Florida shares her kidney-friendly recipe for Grilled Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich, proving beyond a doubt that PB&J is not just for kids! With a grilled, crispy outside and a delicious melted filling, it makes a memorable lunch. And because it fits into the renal diet, those with CKD can feel free to indulge in this special sandwich.
Shannon, a native of Bradenton, Florida, and a graduate of Florida State University, is a people person who has found her niche as a renal dietitian. “I enjoy working and helping people with their diets,” Shannon states. “I took this job 14 years ago and have grown to love the renal field. It is challenging and rewarding at the same time.”
“The most challenging aspect of my job is getting patients to adhere to the diet restrictions and medications,” explains Shannon. And the most rewarding aspect of being a renal dietitian? “Seeing my patients succeed.”
“What I like most about working with my patients is getting to know about them and having fun with them,” Shannon says. Although kidney disease is no laughing matter, a little levity can be just what the doctor – or dietitian – ordered. “I like to joke with my patients and make them laugh and let them know that I understand it’s not an easy diet, but all they need to do is their best.”
One thing this renal dietitian strongly believes: it’s important to keep the focus on the positive. “I use humor and compassion with my patients,” Shannon asserts.
Shannon likes to remind her patients that the single most important thing they can do to improve their health is to “take ownership of their disease state and become knowledgeable of the diet.”
After 14 years with DaVita, Shannon still finds satisfaction in her work. “I really do enjoy it. Some days are a little more stressful than others, but getting to work with the patients and having some really good teammates makes it worth it,” says Shannon.
Kindness and compassion seem to run in Shannon’s family. “I was at a Home Depot with my family and saw one of my patients there so I went over and introduced my family to him, and my daughter gave the man a big hug and had the biggest smile, and the next time at treatment he told everyone about it and how special it made him feel,” Shannon remembers.
Shannon appreciates working at the DaVita center in Lakeland, Florida. When asked what makes the center special, she replies, “I have a great team to work with.” She goes on to say, “I tend to have to work and cover several different facilities, and I never have to worry about patient education or support. The team is proactive and will educate patients and provide them with the information they need.”
She also enjoys the Lakeland location. “It’s a very family-oriented place to live and work.”
Looking for a different spin on an old standby? Remember Shannon’s renal-friendly Grilled Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Its gooey delicious filling paired with crispy, crunchy grilled bread will appeal to kids and adults alike.