and nutritionists plan food and nutrition programs, supervise meal
preparation, and oversee the serving of meals. They prevent and treat
illnesses by promoting healthy eating habits and recommending dietary
modifications. For example, dietitians might teach a patient with high
blood pressure how to use less salt when preparing meals, or create a
diet reduced in fat and sugar for an overweight patient.
Dietitians manage food
service systems for institutions such as hospitals and schools, promote
sound eating habits through education, and conduct research. Many
dietitians specialize, becoming a clinical dietitian, community
dietitian, management dietitian, or consultant.
provide nutritional services to patients in hospitals, nursing care
facilities, and other institutions. They assess patients' nutritional
needs, develop and implement nutrition programs, and evaluate and report
the results. They also confer with doctors and other health care
professionals to coordinate medical and nutritional needs. Some clinical
dietitians specialize in managing the weight of overweight patients or
in the care of renal (kidney), diabetic, or critically ill patients. In
addition, clinical dietitians in nursing care facilities, small
hospitals, or correctional facilities may manage the food service
dietitians counsel individuals and groups on nutritional practices
designed to prevent disease and promote health. Working in places such
as public health clinics, home health agencies, and health maintenance
organizations, community dietitians evaluate individual needs, develop
nutritional care plans, and instruct individuals and their families.
Dietitians working in home health agencies provide instruction on
grocery shopping and food preparation to the elderly, children, and
individuals with special needs.
interest in nutrition has led to job opportunities in food
manufacturing, advertising, and marketing. In these areas, dietitians
analyze foods, prepare literature for distribution, or report on issues
such as dietary fiber, vitamin supplements, or the nutritional content
oversee large-scale meal planning and preparation in health care
facilities, company cafeterias, prisons, and schools. They hire, train,
and direct other dietitians and food service workers; budget for and
purchase food, equipment, and supplies; enforce sanitary and safety
regulations; and prepare records and reports.
dietitians work under contract with health care facilities or in their
own private practice. They perform nutrition screenings for their
clients and offer advice on diet-related concerns such as weight loss
and cholesterol reduction. Some work for wellness programs, sports
teams, supermarkets, and other nutrition-related businesses. They may
consult with food service managers, providing expertise in sanitation,
safety procedures, menu development, budgeting, and planning.
Note: Some resources in this section are provided by the US Department
of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics.