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I see lots of wellness/lifestyle coaches and nutritionist writing articles and offering nutrition counseling. Why should I use a registered dietitian over one of them?
by Vic2016

I see lots of wellness/lifestyle coaches and nutritionist writing articles and offering nutrition counseling. Why should I use a registered dietitian over one of them?


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Joanne Perez, MS, RDN, LD

Not many people know that every registered dietitian is a nutritionist, but not every nutritionist is a dietitian.

Registered dietitians have bachelor’s degrees in nutrition, dietetics, public health or a related field from well-respected, accredited colleges and universities (about 50% of RDs have advanced degrees), completed an internship (supervised practice program) and passed an examination. Once you have achieved RD status, you can only stay certified through continuing education credits.

In addition, most states have licensing laws and RDs must be licensed in order to provide nutritional medical therapy in the which they live and practice.

This combination of education, supervised experience and continued requirement to stay up-to-date is wht makes RDs the experts who can translate the science of nutrition into practical solutions for healthy living.

And RDs are versitle and involved in many industries. Yes, we do work in hospitals, nursing homes and clinics, but we also work in supermarkets, school foodservice, colleges and universities, businesses, food companies and professional sports’ organizations. RDs provide their expertise to computer software companies, media outlets and research labs. We can be directors of large departments, professors, chefs and television stars. The one thing we are not is the food police!

It is important to remember that anyone can call himself/herself a nutritionist or health/wellness coach. There are no education requirements or standards of care/ethics attached to those titles. If you decided, to use a health/wellness coach or nutritionist, be sure to look for someone who has a nutrition-related degree. Or better yet, just contact a RD to ensure that you are getting your nutrition information from the true nutrition expert.


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