Dietician vs. Nutritionist: What’s the Difference?

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Both dieticians and nutritionists help people find the most suitable diets, foods, and supplements from places like Supplement First. They aim to help patients meet their health needs. However, did you know that they have notable differences?

Read on to learn more about the differences between dieticians and nutritionists.

The Difference Between Dieticians and Nutritionists

When choosing a medical professional to help you move forward with your health needs, you’re probably wondering whether you need a dietician or nutritionist. Here are the key differences to help narrow down your choice:

  1. Who They Are For

Dieticians are trained professionals who will treat medical conditions via medical nutrition therapy. They would work with those diagnosed with certain conditions, suggesting dietary changes.

Nutritionists are more focused on promoting healthier eating habits and lifestyles. They don’t treat people with illnesses but work with healthy individuals who want to improve what they eat.

  1. Dietician vs. Nutritionist Terms

Dieticians are heavily regulated. They need to meet professional requirements and register with the relevant body. They are also required to pass an exam and hold a license before they can begin practicing as one. That’s because the field of a dietician is medical and diagnostic, where they need to identify illnesses and diseases.

Nutritionists aren’t usually regulated by law; anyone can call themselves nutritionist. It may be difficult to distinguish between people with proper qualifications and those who were self-taught or without genuine qualifications. Some countries have “registered nutritionists, meaning they have a recognized degree in nutrition science.

  1. Workplaces

While dieticians and nutritionists have a similar role in promoting health through optimum nutrition, they have different work settings.

Dieticians work in medical settings like health clinics and hospitals, conducting nutritional assessments on patients. They would also prescribe dietary changes for patients to manage and treat conditions better. Their roles can expand to pharmacies, and insurance companies, among other areas in the healthcare industry.

On the other hand, nutritionists work in commercial settings, like fitness and wellness centers. You can also find them in nutritional supplement companies as they provide dietary consultations. They can formulate meal plans for clients while including supplements like Designs for Health in Supplement First.

Nutritionists can also work in other settings like health food restaurants, corporations with in-house cafeterias, or schools. Some nutritionists would work in government agencies to help educate the general public on healthy food and how to live a balanced lifestyle.

  1. Education

Nutrition and dietetics courses would share a similar curricular framework, in the beginning, starting with the basics of food and biology, anatomy, physiology, microbiology, food science, and the like.

But in the later years, nutrition students will focus more on nutrition modules, learning about nutrition program planning and assessment, nutrition education, and nutrition for physical activities.

Dietetics students will focus more on medical-related subjects like medical nutrition therapy, clinical biochemistry, therapeutic diet preparation, and the like.

Wrapping It Up

In a nutshell, dieticians are certified to treat clinical conditions, while nutritionists aren’t always certified. When looking for a dietician or nutritionist to achieve wellness, keep this in mind.

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