Dietitians and nutritionists plan, implement and oversee nutrition and food service programs. They are employed in a variety of settings including hospitals, home health-care agencies and extended care facilities, community health centres, the food and beverage industry, educational institutions, and government and sports organizations, or they may work as private consultants.

Profile

Example titles

  • Administrative dietitian
  • Clinical dietitian
  • Community nutritionist
  • Consultant dietitian
  • Dietitian
  • Dietitian-nutritionist
  • Nutrition specialist
  • Nutritionist
  • Public health dietitian
  • Public health nutritionist
  • Registered dietitian (RD)
  • Research dietitian

Main duties

This group performs some or all of the following duties:

  • Develop, administer and supervise nutrition and food preparation and service programs in hospitals, nursing homes, schools, company cafeterias or similar settings
  • Provide nutrition guidance, label interpretation and consultation services to health professionals, individuals, dietetic interns, community groups, government and the media
  • Evaluate nutritional status of individuals and aid in the prevention and/or treatment of inadequate nutrition
    Plan, evaluate and conduct nutrition education programs and develop educational materials for various audiences
  • Practice on an individual basis or as a member of an interdisciplinary team to determine nutritional needs of patients and to plan, implement and evaluate normal and therapeutic menus to maintain and enhance general health
  • Analyze current scientific nutritional studies, conduct research and evaluate program effectiveness to improve the nutritional value, taste, appearance and preparation of food
  • Work within industry in the development, testing and evaluation, and marketing of food and nutrition products or as a company representative supplying product related information to health professionals
    Confer with other health professionals, community groups, government and the media to provide consultation and advice in areas of nutrition interpretation, intervention and policy
  • Supervise training of dietetic interns.

Dietitians and nutritionists may specialize in areas such as administrative dietetics, clinical dietetics, community dietetics, public health nutrition or research dietetics.

Employment requirements

  • Dietitians require a bachelor’s or master’s degree in dietetics, nutrition or a related field such as food and nutritional science or biochemistry and a period of supervised practical training.
  • Registration with a regulatory body is required in all provinces for dietitians.
  • Membership in the national association, Dietitians of Canada, may be required for dietitians to practise.
  • Nutritionists usually require similar education and training as dietitians.
  • Registration with a regulatory body is required for nutritionists in Nova Scotia, (as a registered dietitian-nutritionist) in New Brunswick, Quebec and Alberta.
  • Membership with the national association, Dietitians of Canada, and/or a provincial regulatory body is available for nutritionists who have the same education and practical training as dietitians.

Additional information

  • Dietitians and nutritionists may progress to management positions through additional experience.

Exclusions

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