Dieticians help prevent and treat illnesses by promoting healthy eating habits. They supervise the production of food, plan menus and diets for therapeutic treatment, and manage personnel and food purchases. They scientifically evaluate clients’ diets and suggest modifications such as less salt for those with high blood pressure or reduced fat and sugar intake for those who are overweight. Still others utilize their skills in teaching, conducting research, or serving as consultants.
An applicant who is a certified nutritionist applying for a license to practice as a medical nutrition therapist must be at least 19 years of age, and have met the requirements for and be a registered dietitian with the American Dietetic Association.Training Requirements There are two primary routes that can be used to become a Registered Dietitian. Both routes combine academic coursework with preprofessional experience. Students earn a baccalaureate degree in either dietetics, food and nutrition or foodservice systems management from a college or university with a program approved by the American Dietetics Association (ADA). Following this four year degree coursework, the student completes a 900 clock hour dietetic internship or pre-professional practice program. Students earn a baccalaureate or master’s degree in either dietetics, food and nutrition or foodservice systems management from a college or university with an ADA accredited Coordinated Program. Students combine classroom study and experience in an accelerated program An applicant with a baccalaureate degree applying for a license to practice as a medical nutrition therapist must have a baccalaureate degree in an approved course of study and have been practicing medical nutrition therapy with the general public for at least 5 years.