Nutritionist

Nutritionist

One job that doesn't involve the long hours (and some might say, sleepless nights) of a culinary artiste is that of a nutritionist.

Nutrionists use knowledge of how foods affect the body to help consumers make eating decisions that prevent disease and promote health. They make recommendations, plan food and nutrition programs, and often oversee preparation and food service.

They work in hospitals, nursing homes, schools, or as private consultants. Some may even work for food manufacturers to help enhance the nutritional quality of certain foods, or educate consumers. Most work the traditional 40-hour work week

The knowledge of the human body that dieticians and nutritionists need is similar to that required by other healthcare workers, but an understanding of the culinary arts is critical in developing and preparing meals that are at once appealing, taste good, and are good for the body.

Education

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most nutritionists hold a bachelor's degree in foods and nutrition, food services management or dietetics. Graduate degrees in dietetics or nutrition are also available from some schools, and can help you move forward in clinicial positions, public health, or research.

Bachelor's degree students take courses in nutrition and foods, as well as science courses like chemistry, biology, physiology, and microbiology.

Licensing requirements vary by state. Currently, 33 states require licensing, 12 states require certification, and one requires registration. The other four states do not have laws regulating dietetics.Check with your school and the state where you'll practice for more information.

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