What does a dietician do?
Updated: May 4
What will a dietitian do to help me?
Dieticians are professionals who provide personalised health advice. They apply food and nutrition science to promote well-being and prevent and treat disease. By doing this, they can help to optimise your overall health through a range of proven strategies and techniques.
These specialists will assess your needs, develop personalised eating plans, and provide nutrition counselling and support to individuals and groups. They also translate scientific information into practical advice that you can implement as part of your everyday life.
You will have heard the term ‘nutritionist’ used as well and maybe wondering about the difference between the two. We’re here to break down the key differences for you.
What do dieticians do?
Nutritionists and dieticians may seem like similar terms and professions, but there is a key difference between the two, and what they do.
What does a dietician do? First, it is important to understand that being a dietician denotes certain qualifications. Accredited Practicing Dietitians (APDs) must undertake ongoing training and education to ensure that they’re up to date with the most credible sources of information. They also need to ensure they have the expertise to provide individualised dietary counselling and medical nutrition therapy.
What does a sports nutritionist do?
It is important to note that the term ‘nutritionist’ is not regulated – therefore, this title can be used by people with varying levels of education (including dieticians), who provide a range of services related to nutrition.
So, what does a nutritionist do? Well, nutritionists provide more general advice. They are not qualified to provide individualised advice or prescribe diet plans to their clients.
Unlike a nutritionist, a qualified APD will consider all factors which influence your food choices and provide the support that is personally tailored to you and your situation. They’ll also help empower you to improve your health and meet your goals.
The importance of a balanced diet
Food plays a key role in our mental and physical state, and the choices we make have an impact on the human body.
It’s all about keeping a healthy balance and having everything in moderation. It’s important to eat a variety of different fruits, vegetables, and proteins – ensuring you get all the right nutrients to properly fuel your body. It’s also important to limit the number of sugars, salts, and saturated fats you consume day-to-day.
By eating the right foods, not only will you maintain a healthy weight, but you’ll also improve your heart and gut health, improve your memory, keep your skin, bones, and teeth in peak condition, and generally enjoy an improved lifestyle. You’ll also reduce your risk of developing conditions like cancer or diabetes. Striking the right balance can also be a critical factor in improving your mental health.
With so much conflicting information available out there, it can be difficult to navigate and identify what information is correct and what isn’t. That is where it’s good to have a professional on hand to properly advise you.
How we can help you achieve optimal wellbeing
There is a common misconception that a dietitian’s only job is to put their clients on restrictive meal plans and tell people to lose weight. While weight management is one of the services these specialists offer, it is only a very small part of what they do.
They will use evidence-based research and science to deliver accurate advice and provide tailored interventions to their clients. This aims to improve overall wellbeing and optimise health outcomes for an array of conditions.
Which factors need to be considered?
There isn’t a ‘one size fits all approach. Your dietitian will consider multiple individual factors when tailoring a treatment plan – including your:
● Medical history
● Personal goals
● Personal needs
These specialists commonly work with patients with a variety of medical conditions, including:
● Gastrointestinal disorders
● Diabetes, high cholesterol, and heart disease
● Food allergies and intolerances
● Disordered eating
● Overweight and obesity
● Depression and anxiety
They’ll also work with patients who want to improve their health in other ways – for example, with individuals wanting to use nutrition to increase the chance of conception, or during pregnancy to promote wellness. They can also work with athletes to help make food choices which can help with improving athletic performance.
In recent times, there have also been studies into the benefits of safe intermittent fasting.
Let us help you reach your goals
Many patients may benefit from including nutrition therapy in their treatment plans to improve their outcomes. The best answer you’ll get to the question ‘how can a dietitian help?’, will come from meeting with and speaking to a dietitian.
Here at MSPPC, we are the experts when it comes to improving your optimal health. Not only do we have a trained dietician on staff, but we’re also passionate about promoting practices that boost your overall wellbeing – whether it’s through podiatry, physiotherapy, or clinical pilates.
If you have any further queries, reach out to our professional team of experts for further insights, advice, and information today. We can help you on your journey to a renewed sense of vitality and balance.