Nutritionist

How to Enter This Career

For most dietitian or nutritionist positions, a bachelor’s degree is generally required. This degree is usually in food and nutrition, dietetics, or another related field. An undergraduate degree typically takes students about four years to complete if they are attending full time, meaning taking 12 to 15 credit hours each semester. There are graduate degree programs available as well. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that as of 2008, there were 279 undergraduate degree programs and 18 graduate programs that had been approved by the American Dietetic Association’s Commission on Accreditation for Dietetics Education, so students have many programs to choose from when it comes to this field. Each state has different licensing requirements, so students should check the specific requirements of their state before taking the exam. Programs will vary depending on the concentration and the school, but many courses that are required and suggested include:

Daily Duties of a Nutritionist

Nutritionists are responsible for planning and overseeing healthy food and nutrition plans. The goal is to help form healthy eating habits in order to cater to their patient’s needs. Certain programs might include using less salt for patients with high blood pressure or teaching someone how to cut out fat and sugar in their diet. So for patients with existing illnesses and health problems, nutritionists work to treat them. In other situations, they aim to prevent these illnesses from occurring by helping to implement these healthy habits early on. These positions might include working in clinics, community centers, schools, or even consulting.

Earning Power and Job Outlook

This field is experiencing average employment growth, but for those with more advanced degrees or any additional certifications, more opportunities are available. The BLS shows the median salary for nutritionists as $50,590 in 2008. This may vary state to state, but other median salaries include local government positions at $47,390, hospitals at $51,390, and outpatient centers at $52,120.

Best Online MPH (Master of Public Health) Degrees

Public health is the science of preventing disease and promoting health at the population level. Programs prepare students to become leading public health professionals capable of addressing current global public health problems. By clicking on the logos below, you can receive more information regarding your degree and school of choice.

Walden University Master of Public Health
MPA: Health Policy
Walden University – The Walden University MPH degree teaches the development of healthy individuals, organizations, and communities. The program provides core study in the public health field, using real-world teaching methodology, industry leading professors, and a capstone fieldwork practicum. Those interested in policymaking may find Walden's MPA in health policy to be of interest.
Kaplan University Master of Public Health
MPH: Health Education
Kaplan University – Graduates of the Kaplan University MPH program are ready to take their careers to the next stage at the government, nonprofit, or private level. The online program provides students with an education on how to analyze and apply scientific research, prepare public health policies, develop health education programs, and review the impact of occupational and environmental factors. Kaplan offers several specializations within their MPH program, including health education.
Grand Canyon University Master of Public Health
Grand Canyon University – The Grand Canyon University Master of Public Health program is recognized as a leader in training the next generation of public health advocates. Featuring a curriculum that is developed around a multidisciplinary methodology, courses include Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Environmental Health, and Social, Behavioral, and Cultural Factors in Public Health.
Boston University MS: Health Communication
Boston University – At the Boston University online Master of Science in Health Communication program, students are taught cutting edge methods in hospital administration through a dynamic curriculum that examines current healthcare issues. The program gives students a world class education in the art of communicating health literacy.

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