Hello, I am Carla Caminos, and I am currently a Sodexo dietetic intern in region 10 in Houston, Texas. It is still early in my internship, and I have only completed a few rotations. The most impactful so far has been my community rotation with an educational agency in the state of Texas. This rotation was focused on community nutrition education, agriculture training, and natural resource management. The audience included adults, children, and members of the elderly community.
As an intern, I assisted in teaching classes. This ranged from preparing snacks for presentations, attending training sessions, and I was able to present educational material to middle schoolers. My overall favorite location during this rotation was a senior education center where we ran a four-week program named Walk N Talk centered around fruits and vegetables. The class commenced with a light stretch and slow movements to loosen up our arms, legs, hips, and back. We then transitioned into a 15-minute workout with a modified alternative available for those with limited mobility. This allowed everyone to participate, either standing or seated with the modified safe alternative. We then covered the fruit or vegetable for the day, providing supplemental nutritional information such as vitamins and minerals, and recapped the information discussed with an easy-to-follow handout of recipes.
I also chose the Senior Education Center to do my senior community nutrition education presentation. The audience was very engaged, and they were always happy to participate in any nutrition educational classes. Our topic was healthy substitutions; we focused on recipe alterations, such as using yogurt instead of mayonnaise, using fresh herbs to season food to reduce salt consumption, using apple sauce as an egg substitute for baked goods, using dried fruit to sweeten baked goods, and choosing low-sodium soups and no salt added or low-sodium canned vegetables. Our food demo consisted of two items: a healthy yogurt-based ranch dip/dressing and a lemon vinaigrette. The yogurt ranch was made with fresh dill, parsley, and garlic, giving it a delicious flavor. It was sampled with mini sweet peppers and baby carrots. The lemon vinaigrette was made with lemon zest, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, a small amount of fresh garlic, and olive oil, giving a delicious zesty and tangy flavor. I served it over butter lettuce, sliced radishes, yellow sweet peppers, and raw beets. We provided small samples to each participant, and some even asked for seconds. We closed with a short, but rather interactive Q&A session.
I have truly enjoyed my time here. As I move on to other rotations, I find myself thinking of all the fun I had on this rotation and how much I have learned and grown from the experience. I am excited for the next chapter in my journey to becoming a Registered Dietitian.