- University of Nebraska-Lincoln students
- University of Nebraska-Lincoln faculty and staff
- One nutrition counseling session
Hours of Service
Thursdays and Fridays: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Saturdays through Wednesdays: Closed
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Services Covered By Student Fees
Improve Your Strength, Energy and Mood with Individualized Nutrition Counseling
The University Health Center registered dietitian’s goal is to provide the campus community with the nutritional tools they need to live a happier, healthier and longer life.
To a certain extent, rather than follow generic nutrition guidelines that take a one-size-fits-all approach, our dietitian uses a combination of nutrition guidelines and genetic testing to create personalized nutrition care proven to be effective for your specific DNA. For example, the general recommendation for coffee consumption is no more than four cups a day. However, your DNA test results may reveal you carry a gene that increases your risk of heart disease, which means you should limit your coffee consumption to a different amount each day because your metabolism of caffeine is slow compared to a faster metabolism. This same approach is used to determine your body’s unique limitations for sodium, omega-3 fats and more.
Nutrition counseling is not just about managing weight! Eating the proper nutrition for your body is like medicine and can help you manage the following concerns:
- Digestive disorders
- Disordered eating
- Food allergies and intolerances
- General nutrition wellness
- Heart health
- High blood pressure or cholesterol
- Hormone health
- Kidney/renal concerns
- Special diets (including vegetarian and vegan)
- Weight management
- And much more
Services are open to UNL students, faculty and staff. Nutrition counseling services are available Thursdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. A doctor’s referral is not required, but in some cases, a medical clinic provider may refer you to nutrition counseling to help you manage a medical concern. To make an appointment, call 402.472.5000.
Your first nutrition counseling appointment is no cost if you pay student fees. Each 30-minute return appointment will incur a charge, which can be submitted to insurance or paid for out of pocket at a reduced rate. Students with the university’s student insurance plan can receive all nutrition counseling visits for no cost in most cases. Faculty and staff members are charged the community rate for all visits.
To determine how much your visit will cost, we recommend contacting your health insurance provider for coverage information. Patients are responsible for any charges not covered by insurance.
Click here to learn more about cost and insurance.
What to expect at your first visit
Your first appointment will last one hour and will include a discussion on the following topics:
- Your health history, health concerns and nutrition goals
- Healthy nutrition choices that address your specific concerns and body composition (remember, what works for a friend or family member might not work for you!)
- Plans for tracking nutrition choices and making a meal plan
- Proper portion sizes
- How to navigate the campus dining centers, Huskers Helping Huskers Food Pantry+, grocery stores and other food markets
Follow-up appointments are 30 minutes each and are an opportunity to adjust your goals and/or approach and answer any questions you may have.
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- Caesar Salad with Navy Bean
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General Healthy Eating Basics
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Nutrigenomics?
Nutrigenomics is a new scientific discipline that uses modern genomics technology to study the relationship between genes, nutrition and health. It has long been apparent that some people respond differently from others to certain foods. For example, individuals with lactose intolerance experience gastrointestinal discomfort after consuming certain dairy products, while other individuals can consume dairy with no problems. Nutrigenomics allows us to understand how our genes affect the way we respond to the foods, beverages and supplements we consume.
What are the Nutrigenomix tests the University Health Center dietitian uses in nutrition counseling services?
Nutrigenomix is a University of Toronto start-up biotechnology company that is dedicated to empowering healthcare professionals and their clients with comprehensive, reliable genomic information with the ultimate goal of improving health through personalized nutrition. Nutrigenomix currently offers two tests with new panels added as the science develops. Both tests consist of a panel of 45 genetic markers related to several important aspects of your lifestyle, including weight management and body composition, nutrient metabolism, eating habits, cardio metabolic health, food intolerances and physical activity. The Nutrigenomix Health and Wellness test is intended for the general public to optimize health and well-being, whereas the Nutrigenomix Sport test is focused on enhancing performance and decreasing injury risk while optimizing health.
Why should I have a Nutrigenomix test? How will the results benefit me?
Armed with information that is specific to your genetic profile, the University Health Center registered dietitian will be able to develop the best dietary plan to help you meet your nutrition and fitness goals. Adhering to those recommendations will enable you to optimize your nutritional status and prevent nutrition-related chronic diseases. The Nutrigenomix Sport test can help you to enhance your performance while decreasing your risk for injuries.
What does the test cost?
There is a discount on the test for all students, faculty and staff from the UHC when you register for your Nutrigenomix account. The registered dietitian will explain the discount and how to create this account during your nutrition counseling appointment. We recommend you contact your insurance provider to determine if your insurance will cover the cost of the test.
Is it required to take the Nutrigenomix test in order to continue nutrition counseling services at the University Health Center?
Although the testing is highly recommended, it is not a requirement for services. The registered dietitian also offers other nutrition counseling options such as regular nutrition intervention and Integrative and Functional Nutrition Medicine Therapy.
How is the Nutrigenomix testing done?
A simple DNA sample is required to test the 45 genetic markers included in the Nutrigenomix reports. After you place the order, the sample test kit will be mailed to you directly. You can either follow the instructions in the kit to sample your DNA or make an appointment at the University Health Center for the registered dietician to do your DNA sampling. After your DNA is sampled, it is mailed to the Nutrigenomix laboratory for analysis. Once you receive the test result, you will upload a copy through One Chart to the dietician for interpretation and for discussion during your next appointment.
Can my test results be bad?
The Nutrigenomix tests analyze DNA for genetic variants that affect your response to the foods and beverages you consume. The test does not predict or diagnose any disease or health condition. With the information from your test results, the University Health Center registered dietitian will be able to provide you with dietary advice tailored to your individual genetic profile.
For how long do I need to follow the advice?
Your test results are not intended to form a short-term "diet." The information provided in your report, combined with the nutritional plan created by the University Health Center, will empower you with knowledge so that you can continually make the best dietary choices on a daily basis.
Can I get the test done without visiting the University Health Center registered dietitian?
A consult with the dietitian is the best way to gain the optimum benefit from your genetic test results and personalized nutrition report. The dietitian will be able to explain the findings and recommendations to you and help you achieve your optimal diet and healthy eating habits based on your unique genetic profile.
How long will it take to get my results?
Once the laboratory receives your DNA sample, it should take approximately two weeks for the analysis and recommendations to be sent to you. Once you receive the test results, you will upload a copy through One Chart for the dietician to interpret and personalize a nutrition plan prior to your next appointment.
Who will have access to my genetic test results?
Only the University Health Center registered dietitian and providers you work with will be able to access your genetic test results through One Chart. Your DNA kit is marked with a unique barcode, which is what Nutrigenomix will use at its facilities to analyze your sample. Only your healthcare professional will be able to link your test result to your personal information. All genetic data is sent through a secure 256-bit encryption server.
What will happen to my DNA sample?
Your sample will be stored in a secure, controlled-access facility and labeled only with your unique barcode, which only the University Health Center registered dietitian will know belongs to you. As new discoveries in the field of nutrigenomics are made, additional information may be added to test reports and new panels with additional cutting-edge information could be available to you.
What language is the report available in?
The reports are currently available in English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Hebrew, Arabic and Chinese, and other languages may be available in the future.
What is the ketogenic diet?
The Ketogenic diet is a type of diet that is based on the macro nutrient distribution ratio, which is low in carbohydrates, high in fat and moderate in protein. Because the diet is very low in carbohydrates, the body then induces ketosis.
What foods are typically eaten during this diet?
Usually, the type of food consists of high fats (e.g., butter, olive oil, canola oil, cream, cream cheese, sour cream, avocado, etc.), low carb or non starchy vegetables (e.g., spinach, zucchini, lettuce, asparagus and kale) and protein such as eggs and fish (preferably from whole natural food sources or organic).
Why is this diet a successful weight loss tool?
It is successful because the ketogenic diet forces the body to burn fat instead of glucose for fuel. Otherwise, cells in the body prefer to use blood sugar, which comes from carbohydrates —a main source of energy. Because this diet allows little or no circulating blood sugar from food, the body starts breaking down stored fat into molecules called ketone bodies —a process called ketosis.
What are the negative aspects of the diet?
Some people may suffer from flulike episodes such as headache, nausea, weakness, irritability, vomiting, and constipation at first. Later, the dieter may not achieve ketosis and will need guidance. Hence, the diet still needs a registered dietitian’s guidance and supervision.
Why might a registered dietitian not recommend the diet?
Some may recommend the ketogenic diet for a short period as an adjunct to achieve certain health conditions, such as weight loss. However, nothing is known about its long-term effects, and it can be difficult to accustom to the diet because people can’t eat this way as a long-term lifestyle. It can also be difficult to practice and is involves a substantial amount of fatty-processed foods, including salty foods that are especially unhealthy (e.g., large quantities of red meat).