Use Your Nutrition Degree To Provide Healthy Meal Plans
With obesity, heart disease, and diabetes incidences rising at such an alarming rate, the health industry is appropriately concerned about the health and wellness of those afflicted by these preventable health issues. The need for qualified nutritionists has never been greater than today. There are many specialties to choose from within the nutritional field, and it may be in your best interest to refine which specialties will be a good fit for your career goals.
A successful nutritionist will have obtained a Bachelor’s degree. The nutritional field is quite diverse and offers abundant opportunities. The basic nutrition degree will include coursework like chemistry, biochemistry, nutrition, biology, and physiology. Most often, careers in the nutritional field will use these basics to work with either communities or individuals to plan and supervise healthy meals that lead to healthy lives.
Food science degrees and their related nutritional degrees primarily focus on the chemical and biological components of food and how they relate to health. A nutritionist’s job is to educate patients about how their health is influenced by their food intake.
Nutritionists can choose to specialize in a field or a specific part of the population. Dietitians may choose to work with patients afflicted with critical illnesses, kidney problems, or diabetes. Still, others may want to supervise patients with weight issues or eating disorders in an effort to help them find a path to a healthy lifestyle that begins with healthy eating.
A Master’s degree program in nutrition is the next step to further specialize within the specific field of health and nutrition. These graduate programs typically require a Bachelor’s degree as well as a GRE score that is acceptable to the specific school. This level of specialization can include diet and exercise, metabolic regulation, nutrition for the elderly, or food consumption of high risk populations.
Similar to PhD programs, a Master’s program requires the student to do research as he or she completes a thesis. A PhD program in nutrition and food require the successful completion of many upper-level courses as well as the completion of a doctoral dissertation. These programs are very competitive, as they prepare the student for advanced career choices including teaching, research, and public policy advocacy.
Most states require a license to legally practice as a nutritionist. Some states have enacted specific laws that govern the licensure of a dietician, while others just require a license. Still, other states have written regulations that require nutritionists to be certified or registered. There is preferential credential, known as a Registered Dietitian, that is awarded by ‘The Commission on Dietetic Registration of the American Dietetic Association’ (ADA) to those who pass the certification exam after they have completed the required coursework.
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