What does a Dietitian do?

A Dietitian is an expert in food and nutrition. Dietitians give dietary advice, help promote healthy eating habits and develop specific diets for people.

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Dietitians translate the science of nutrition into everyday information about food for health and well being. They can treat the individual or work with population groups; working by both prevention and treatment.

Dietitians can work in a range of areas including in acute and community health sectors, as health educators, in private practice (freelance), in food service and industry, in sport, research, in media and in public health.

Day to day work of a Dietitian may include:

  • teaching and advising clients about how food and healthy eating habits can prevent illness and achieve and maintain optimum health
  • writing books for the public
  • teaching and advising a wide range of patients about how therapeutic diets and dietary therapy can improve the management of their conditions
  • calculating individual’s nutritional requirements using standard equations based on assessments of blood chemistry, temperature, stress, mobility and other relevant factors
  • analysing the nutritional content of food
  • devising eating plans and manipulating recipes to suit client’s needs
  • delivering group sessions to a variety of audiences, including children and patient groups
  • educating other healthcare and non-health care professionals about food and nutrition issues
  • working with large companies to support well-being programmes for staff
  • advising catering departments about specific dietary requirements
  • running clinics in hospital outpatients departments or general practitioners’ (GP) surgeries for patients who have been referred by hospital consultants, GPs or health visitors
  • advising athletes and sports persons on how diet can optimise performance and recovery from injury
  • writing reports and case notes and maintaining accurate records
  • carrying out visits to people’s homes, including nursing homes
  • preparing information packs, flyers and other promotional materials
  • writing for the media, social media, public relations
  • research and continuing professional development
  • advising the food and pharmaceutical industry
  • visiting schools and communities to deliver nutrition components of health promotion campaigns
  • running branded campaigns on social media

Dietitians work in such a wide variety of areas these days. You will find that most would have been sure to have completed at least a few years “grounding” work in Hospitals, working with a wide range of clinical conditions. They can be general or complex.

This means that most Dietitians have a fairly wide scope of practice when it comes to dietary therapy. You can trust a Dietitian to know about Nutrition!

Tags: Clinics, Consultations, Counselling, Dietary Advice, Dietary Assessment, Dietary Plans, Listening, Support