May 11, 2006, Vol. IV Issue 10
What do Moms want most these days? Time out according to a national survey from market research publisher Packaged Facts. Forty percent of moms chose “a day for themselves” when asked what they want for Mother’s Day. That’s good news for us – supporting the popularity of women’s retreats, wellness days and ladies night out events, that many of you put your heart and soul into planning.
Time out goes hand-in-hand with appreciation and that’s what most nurses, just like moms, yearn for. We’re in the midst of Nurses Week, (May 6-12), a special time to recognize and appreciate those who care for us and our loved ones. Deb Gauldin, RN, gives us an enlightening and honest look at what’s happening in nursing.
A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting with Diana Dyer, MS, RD, who was visiting Portland from her home in Michigan. Diana is a three-time cancer survivor and author of A Dietitian’s Cancer Story. She was referred to me by my dear friend Zonya Foco, RD, CHFI, CSP. I’m pleased to share her story in this issue, and her recipe for a healing shake that will please your body’s cells as much as your tastebuds.
Nurses: Appreciation Is Appreciated
Though any time is a good time to celebrate hard-working nurses, hospital systems and healthcare providers across the country are holding dinners, recognition events, ice cream socials, and other creative celebrations, to acknowledge and appreciate their nurses this week.
“At perhaps no other time in our history has prioritizing nurse appreciation been more essential,” Deb Gauldin, RN, told me. “Headlines tell us that our country is facing a nursing shortage that will only worsen over the next ten years. In fact, by the year 2010, 40% of nurses employed today are expected to retire. Who will be there to take care of us?”
An obstetric nurse and childbirth educator for over 20 years, Deb has moved through the ranks of healthcare one step and one conviction at a time. She started as a “Sunshine” geriatric volunteer and advanced from the Junior Red Cross to hospital Candy Striper to Nurses Aide to Licensed Practical Nurse to Registered Nurse. Today she follows her bliss as a motivational performer who uplifts the overworked and under-appreciated with her humor, stories and music.
Deb noted that although young men and women are heeding the call to become nurses in record numbers, nursing education systems as they stand now, can’t begin to meet the new demand. She said this is happening for two reasons. First, because only very ill patients are hospitalized, there are fewer opportunities for students to practice in clinical settings. Secondly, there is a critical shortage of nursing faculty.
“Did you know that nursing faculty members can practice fewer hours, yet earn significantly more money by applying their expertise in a clinical setting?” she asks.
Obviously, competition to recruit the best and brightest nurses is fierce, but retaining good nurses is even more crucial. Because of the workload and stress involved, some nurses are leaving the field long before retirement.
“What’s the worst that can happen as a grocery clerk?” Deb asks. “You ring up a peach instead of a nectarine? Nobody dies.” Others are jumping from facility to facility in order to qualify for competitive sign-on bonuses, and still others are going to work for higher salaries and the flexibility offered by expensive temporary staffing agencies.
However, most nurses do not leave the profession over compensation issues. The two things that nurses report motivate them the most are (1) interesting work and (2) appreciation of that work. According to a survey of over 1500 employees by Bob Nelson, PhD, personal praise — verbal, public, and written — were among the ten types of recognition most desired.
Appreciation of others, such as nurses or teachers, is something that many of our speakers do as naturally and sincerely as breathing. They write custom songs and poems and share their personal stories. They laugh, they cry, they empathize and entertain, leaving the employees feeling valued and replenished.
Nurses week isn’t the only time to say thank you. For example, if there is a women’s wellness event planned, collaborating with your nurse recruiter or nursing education department can result in an additional session designed to inspire and celebrate your nurses.
We’ve gathered a group or outstanding speakers for your nursing appreciation events. To learn more about Deb Gauldin, visit Deb’s page on our website. Or go to our website, click on the Request A Speaker tab, and under Event Type, select Nursing Appreciation. Or call us at 503-699-5031 and we’ll help you design an event that will leave a lasting impression.
Diana Dyer, MS, RD
Cancer Survivor Shakes Things Up
Diana Dyer, MS, RD, is a woman of courage and commitment, whose life vision had not included public speaking or writing a book. In fact, she’s one who stumbled into the profession, as her passion for living led her to the microphone.
Diana was catapulted into the public eye in 1997, when the Detroit Free Press published an article titled “Nutrition vs. Cancer” about her recovery from a childhood cancer, neuroblastoma, and two separate breast cancers at ages 34 and 45. In addition to providing an overview of current knowledge, guidelines and research evaluating nutrition and cancer connections, the article discussed the changes that Diana had made in her diet and lifestyle to minimize the risk of cancer recurrence after her second breast cancer. These included changes that fell under the umbrella of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). Note: She did have a mastectomy and chemotherapy with each breast cancer.
The phone started ringing off the hook. She was on national television, interviewed by newspapers and invited to speak at numerous cancer survivor groups and professional conferences. Everyone wanted more information.
It actually all started when she asked the question, “What else can I be doing to help with my recovery?”
“The third cancer set me on a different course. I was angry,” she told me. As a registered dietitian, she was already leading a healthy lifestyle – eating low fat foods and lots of fruits and vegetables and whole grains, and she exercised regularly.
“That obviously wasn’t enough. I wanted to know what else I could do,” she said. Answers were not forthcoming so she did her own research uncovering obscure studies and incorporating the most compelling evidence and research about dietary links to cancer into her lifestyle. “In writing the book, I tried diligently to simultaneously wear both my patient and clinician hats as I explored which conventional cancer therapy was right for me along with which alternative or complementary therapies might supplement and enhance (not replace) the conventional treatments for my most recent cancer.”
In Diana’s presentations, she shares her experiences and how they evolved into a healing recipe that benefited her personally and changed her career direction. By example, she puts muscle into hope, giving audiences both information and inspiration to optimize their own health and wellness while living life to its fullest.
The book, A Dietitian’s Cancer Story, is precisely what she wishes her own cancer center would have given her when she asked the question, “What else can I be doing?” Her doctors, interestingly, both honor her choices and fortitude and grant Diana with a great deal of credit for her recovery. It is truly an honor to know and represent Diana as she brings her inspiration and conviction to cancer survivors and researchers alike.
“I developed this shake recipe to provide beneficial phytochemicals (non-nutrient plant molecules) that are now thought to have multiple cancer-fighting activities,” Diana says. “This shake is easy to prepare, consume, and digest. There are more than 1000 phytochemicals in our foods from fruits, vegetables, whole grains, soy foods, and other legumes. I drink one entire shake for breakfast daily. I consider it the centerpiece of my diet plan. It could also be consumed between meals. Drink to your health and enjoy!”
“Diana’s SuperSoy and Phytochemical Shake”
* 2 1/2 oz. soft or silken tofu (1/6 of a 1 lb. block)
* 3/4 cup of soy milk
* 1 large carrot or 6 – 8 baby carrots
* 3/4 cup of orange juice
* 3/4 cup fresh or frozen fruit
* 1-2 tablespoons of wheat bran
* 1-2 tablespoons of wheat germ
* 1-2 tablespoons of ground or whole flax seed
Mix together in a blender for 1-2 minutes, then drink and enjoy!
Approximate nutritional content for entire recipe:
(using 1 Tbsp. each of flax seeds, wheat germ, wheat bran)
Calories 450 kcal Protein 25 gm Fat 10 gm
Fiber 14 gm Carb 65 gm
The contents of a full recipe contain 3 servings from the fruit and vegetable groups, approximately 1-1/2 servings of soy, 40 – 60% of your daily calcium requirement, 33 – 40% of your daily fiber requirement, and a healthy dose of phytochemicals too numerous to count!
This recipe is completely lactose free which is beneficial for those people who are lactose intolerant either prior to or temporarily during cancer therapy. If your digestive system is not used to a high fiber diet, start with 1 teaspoon each of wheat germ, bran, and flax and gradually work up per your GI system’s tolerance. Be sure to increase your oral fluids of non-caffeinated liquids, too, as you increase your fiber intake.
Until next time, take care of yourself, and whip up a healthy shake for your well being and those you love.