Nutrition specialists or Registered Dietitians specialize in the field of food and nutrition. The minimum education required for nutrition specialists involves a master’s degree along with the completion of an internship program. According to the American Dietetic Association, nutrition specialists have an endless array of diverse careers to choose from. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, career growth of nutritional specialists is expected to increase by 9 percent over the next eight years. (www.bls.gov).
A large number of specialists work as clinical dietitians in healthcare facilities including hospitals and nursing homes. Job requirements for clinical dietitians includes the assessment of patients’ nutritional needs, formulating dietary in-take charts and helping cope up with eating disorders or anxieties. They are responsible for the development of plans to help them make better food choices to improve their nutritional status. Nutritional specialists in some cases also required to coordinate with other healthcare professionals. Theses specialists work with doctors and nurses in order to provide integrated medical and nutritional care. There are different areas of interests for nutrition specialists. They may specialize in different areas including cancer or pediatrics, diabetes, and renal diseases.
Another career option for nutrition specialists includes community dietitian where they are responsible for the counseling of individuals and groups regarding healthy eating and nutritious diet plans for the purpose of improving health and prevent diseases. The settings in which community dietitians work include health management organizations, health clinics, and different healthcare agencies. The demand for community dietitians also exists in different food manufacturing organizations because of an increased interest in disease prevention. The average salary of community dietitians is $48,000(www.bls.gov). The average salary for clinical dietitians includes $52,000 per year (www.bls.gov).In the field of management, job opportunities for nutrition specialists also exist including in schools, hospitals, prisons, food service. In the field of management, the job responsibilities of nutrition specialists include overseeing diet plans and food management. They are also responsible for putting into effect safety regulations as well as to prepare reports. In the field of management, the average salary earned by nutrition specialists is $64,000 (www.bls.gov).
Nutrition Consultants and Sports
There are several opportunities for nutrition consultants in the field of sports. They work with different sports teams in order to provide nutritional guidelines for their players. Nutrition consultants also work for different wellness programs. As consultant dietitians in the sports arena, professionals carry out nutrition screenings and provide nutrition advice and guidance to athletes. Nutrition specialists are also employed by health clubs as well as gyms. In these facilities, nutritional specialists provide guidance and assistance on health and diet taking in view of their current illnesses or disorders.
Education requirements for nutrition consultants include a bachelor’s degree in dietetics or a bachelor’s degree in other fields. Candidates can also opt for a master’s as well as a post graduate degree in nutrition or dietetics. Students can pursue both online and conventional degrees in this field. Apart from education, nutrition consultants are required to possess certain skills including commitment to their profession. Nutrition consultants are also required to pursue healthy lifestyle. They must also be patient when dealing with clients. Furthermore, nutrition consultants are also required to possess excellent research and analytical skills.