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Career in Nutrition and Dietetics

 

A career in Nutrition and Dietetics is a division of science which deals with the study of different types of food and the nourishment they provide. Mostly where Nutrition will help you understand the basic necessity of the body and food and their characteristics; Dietetics will teach you how to manage the nutrition it provides and what kind of maintenance is required to keep the food regulated for a healthy body.

We live in era where although we are more food and health conscious than ever but the right kind of nutritional factors and information is lacking. The fact is that the fundamental nutritional necessities of the body are set on the basis of the sex, weight, age, height, degree activity, rate of growth and medical history. The body requires nutrients in the right amount to function normally and most importantly for sustaining the body. It is the job of the Clinical Nutritionist to prescribe drugs as per the nutritional deficiencies in the body and make sure that the body is balanced and functional. On the other hand the job profile for Dietetics is to deal with the management of food where as nutrition is concerned with the promotion of health.

Also, Nutritionists perform researched which helps analyze the different components of food we eat and the right kind of food which gives a balanced mixture of the essentials nutrients such as minerals, proteins and vitamins.

Basic Eligibility

For admission to undergraduate courses, the candidate must have passed the higher secondary school certificate, i.e. Class 12 examination with science subjects. The normal duration of the bachelor degree course is three years and a diploma course is two years.

On the other hand, for admission to a postgraduate course, the bare minimum is to completing a graduation degree with science subjects. The duration for master's degree and post graduate diploma course is two years.

Courses Available

The following is a list of some of the courses which are available for a student pursuing his/her career in Nutrition and Dietetics:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Master of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Post graduate diploma in Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Certificate Courses in Dietetics & Health Education
  • Certificate Courses in Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Diploma in Dietetics, Health and Nutrition
  • Diploma in Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Diploma in Dietetics and Applied Nutrition

Specializations

You also have the option of completing your course with specializing in one of the below mentioned courses:

  • Molecular Nutrition
  • Nutrition in Health and Disease
  • Consultant Dietitians
  • Sensory Science
  • Public Health Nutrition
  • Food Toxicology
  • Management Dietitians
  • Community Dietitians
  • Clinical Dietitians
  • Nutritional Physiology

Colleges offering Courses in Nutrition and Dietetics

  • Lady Irwin College, Delhi University
  • Institute of Home Economics, New Delhi
  • Women's Christian College, Chennai
  • Bishop Choolaparambil Memorial College for Women, Kottayam
  • SNDT Women's University, Mumbai
  • G.B. Pant University of Agriculture & Technology
  • Acharya NG Ranga Agricultural University
  • Ethiraj College for Women, Chennai
  • Banasthali University, Jaipur
  • Gandhigram Rural Institute

Job Prospects

People all over the world are more health conscious than ever. But having said that doesn’t mean that all of them are heading in the right direction. Primarily, we can owe this to the shortage of time and it becoming more and more difficult to take out time to maintain a healthy schedule. Also because of work, lifestyle and other such reasons people do not find the required time. Needless to say, that all this results in lack of exercise and increase in stress level. It is the job of the Nutritionists and Dieticians to promote healthy living and prevent diseases.

There are various career options available for Nutritionists. They can work for airlines, office cafeterias, yoga center, maternity, colleges, research institutes, schools, companies, athletes camps,  mass media  sector, private or  government hospitals, govt's health depts., etc,. One can also with time start a practice of their own.

Dieticians cans work in places like health maintenance organizations, home health agencies, and public health clinics. Well experienced dietitians can opt as a director, associate or assistant of a dietetic dept or can also become a freelancer. Some dietitians are specialized in renal or pediatric dietetics areas.

Some job profiles:

  • Researcher
  • Consultants
  • Therapeutic Dietitian
  • Food Show Host
  • Sports Nutritionist
  • Nutrition Trainer
  • Administrative Nutritionists
  • Public Health / Community Dietitian

Pay Scale

Although the pay scale of Dietetics and Nutrition experts will depend on the job and the area of work; A professional working in research institutes, govt. hospitals, colleges and other agencies income are set by the govt., is set around Rs 8,000 - 15,000 every month, depends upon their experience and work profile.  

Goes without saying, consultants in private practice can make more money depending on their practice.