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Online Degrees in Nutrition

Nutrition Degrees: Become a registered dietician and enjoy a health care career by earning a bachelor’s or master’s degree in food and nutrition, dietetics or food service management.The job outlook is especially promising for those who complete their bachelor’s or master’s degree and meet state licensing requirements to become specialists in this field. An online degree can help to prepare you for employment in this interesting and challenging health care field.

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Online Degrees » Health and Medicine » Nutrition
 

Online Nutrition

A Career in Nutrition and Diet
A growing population of health conscious and elderly individuals has placed a great deal of emphasis upon what we eat, how much we eat and the safety of our food sources. People are flocking to the food, diet and nutrition section of bookstores and libraries. Internet searches for those subjects are massive; and conversations about diet and food abound in almost every social circle -- including discussions about food and its impact upon our health and longevity. It is a subject that consumes and fascinates us.


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Therefore, it is no surprise that the field of nutrition is a popular career choice. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, those who study to become dieticians will enter a profession that is full of promise. As the health care industry’s employment figures continues to rise, even during lean economic times, the outlook for registered dieticians appears to be bright. Registered dieticians work in hospitals, nursing homes, community health centers, public health offices, research labs, correctional facilities, schools, airlines, and anywhere that mass amounts of food are served. Others work as consultants in the nutrition arena for gerontology services; private homes and businesses; food manufacturers; and federal, state and local governments.

The mission of registered dieticians and nutritionists is to insure that proper nutritional requirements are met, that food is prepared safely, that portion size is adequate but not excessive, and that special nutritional needs are incorporated. They generally oversee food preparation and the serving of meals in hospitals, long-term care facilities, senior centers and schools; and they educate others about healthy eating, safe food handling and food preparation. Registered dieticians are specialists in the health care industry; and their professional services are necessary for the effective healing of patients in hospitals, rehabilitation centers and nursing facilities. They are an important part of the health care team for recovering patients; and their expertise is coveted in many other health-related circles. 


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Professionals in the field of nutrition and diet may choose from a wide array of working environments. Those in management may work behind a desk most of the day; but most dieticians and nutritionists spend a great deal of time on their feet in order to attend to the needs of patients and other individuals. Outside of the health care field, the working environment may vary. Registered dieticians are found on cruise ships, on military bases, in hotels and resorts, in the airline industry, in convention centers, in colleges and universities, in boarding schools, on movie sets, at private gyms, at yoga retreat centers and more. However, the majority of jobs are found in general medical and surgical hospitals.


High school students who are interested in pursuing a career in nutrition should focus on courses in anatomy and physiology, chemistry, mathematics, biology, and health. Once in college, the course of study may also include classes in food and nutrition, biochemistry, statistics, microbiology, management, sociology, psychology, computer science, information technology and communication. After earning a bachelor’s degree, licensure is required in many states for those who desire the designation of “registered dietician”. This designation offers opportunities for higher salaries and better jobs; although nutritionists may work without the additional credentials. Registered dieticians may choose from four major specialties – clinical dietician, community dietician, management dietician and consultant dietician.
Salaries in the field of nutrition vary, depending upon education, experience, geographical location and specific job. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics’ figures for May 2008, the median salary for dieticians and nutritionists was $50,590, with salaries ranging from $31,460 and $73,410.

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