The Making of a Dietitian
Dietitians can be found working in many different settings from healthcare to grocery stores. Have you ever wondered what all a dietitian can actually do or how one becomes a dietitian? I asked myself these questions a few years ago when I was debating whether or not to declare to study human nutrition while in college.
Here are the answers I found. A registered dietitian or RD is an expert in human nutrition who has met the mandatory educational and professional requirements set in place by the Commission on Dietetic Registration which comprise of:
- completion of a bachelor's degree from with coursework approved by Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics
- completion of an accredited, supervised practice program at a health care facility, community agency, or foodservice corporation
- passing the national certification exam
- completion of continuing education requirements to maintain registration
Many registered dietitians have advanced degrees and hold certifications in specialized areas of practice such as diabetes or weight management in addition to these base requirements.
Dietitians can be found working in healthcare facilities, foodservice management, grocery stores, corporate wellness, marketing, journalism, food distribution, agriculture, schools, fitness centers, and research. Many RDs also operate their own private practices.
After learning the answers to these questions, I decided to embark on the journey to becoming a Registered Dietitian. I completed a bachelor's of science degree in Human Nutrition and now I am just a few weeks away from completing my Dietetic Internship. Shortly after completing the Dietetic Internship, I will be eligible to take the national certification exam. With so many practice fields to choose from, I am excited to see what the future holds!
Happy Registered Dietitian Day from a soon-to-be RD!