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Dietitian VS Nutritionist

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Folks, PLEASE check the education credentials of the person giving you nutrition advice.

In some states, there is absolutley zero education required to call oneself "a nutritionist" and give people dietary consultations.

Many bariatric groups will use lay-trained staff to push a particular doctor's dietary approach. Don't use these people. They are unqualified and it's dangerous.

Nutrition is complex and individual and it's a SCIENCE.


Check the laws in your state: https://theana.org/advocate

Ask to see the credentials of the people treating you at appointments.

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There's a comedian that was making fun of pseudoscience (Dara Ó Briain) and he pointed out that dietician is the registered term for people who had received an education and all, and anyone can pretty much call themselves a nutritionist. It really surprised me because in my head, nutritionist sounds like the more "legit" of the two. Yay for learning through comedy :)

I didn't know that some states actually do regulate who can use the nutritionist title though. Sadly, it's none of the states I've lived in, so I will continue to view anyone who labels themselves as a nutritionist in my area with heavy skepticism. Glad my hospital/program uses dieticians!

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I had at one point recently looked into the pathway to becoming a dietitian- requires a master’s (in 2024 this goes into effect) with a learning major in nutrition science (a bachelors is okay before that), an internship, passing the testing, registering with your state, and continuing education for continued registration.
But definitely check if they call themselves a nutritionist, some states have their own licenses for being a nutritionist but others don’t regulate at all. Same for different countries, some use the term dietitian and nutritionist interchangeably.

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But what about the sound nutrition advice given via lifestyle bloggers on YouTube who have this amazing cleanse to sell you?? Or a raw vegan paleo high Protein Keto diet consisting entirely of lemon Water? It sounds so legit. 😬

All kidding aside, great advice. And I think it also bears to mention that although you should follow the advice given by a credentialed professional, there are bad and good doctors out there and the same follows for dietitians as well. If you feel strongly that you’re getting bad advice, you might want to seek out another opinion.

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