Current Issue 22ndNov - 28th Nov 2014, i.e. No. 34
 
CAREER GUIDE


CAREER OPPORTUNITIES IN NUTRITION AND DIETETICS
By
 

Dr. Amrita Poonia

Dietetics is the science and art of feeding individuals based on the principles of nutrition. It can also be said to be the “science and art of human nutritional care.” Diet therapy and its application in patient related settings is a major focus of dietetics. Thus, the field of dietetics can be related to: (a) nutrition care and intervention focused on the individual and (b) nutrition care and intervention focused on the group.

      Diet plays a major role in promotion of health and well being of individual. A good and balanced diet habit improves the quality of life while poor diet may lead to morbidity and diseases. Nutritionists and dietetics are concerned with this aspect. While dietetics is related to food management, nutrition is related to promotion of health. Due to changes in food habits of most of the urban population, role of nutritionists and dieticians is becoming more important. They suggest corrective food habits considering various aspects of an individual such as age, work routine and sickness etc. and thereby improving their quality of life. They also educate their clients about preparation of food according to the principles of nutrition. They know about food production and processing, psychological factors influencing food choice, digestion and its effects on nutritional aspects. A growing and aging population will increase the demand for meals and nutritional counseling in nursing homes, schools, prisons, community health programmes, and home health care agencies.

Role of Dietitian in Health Care
      The role of dietitian has come a long way since the early 1900s. Their role is still unknown to a lot of people. Some think that dietitians, as their name implies, only give out diets to make individuals lose weight, whereas this is a small part of their role. The dietitian is the link between the patient and medical team or physician in assisting difficult decisions making about nutrition care. Asian Society of Perenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASEAN) states that the dietician role in nutrition care has been recommended an adequate source and amount of balanced nutrients according to pre- established standards of care. A dilemma occurs when the   disease state of the patient confound the adequacy of nutritional support, which has resulted in the patient’s malnourishment. The dietician should be:

  1. Planning food and nutrition programmes
  2. Supervising meal preparations in schools and hospitals
  3. Recommending dietary modifications
  4. Educating patients on diets that may help their condition
  5. Working with other healthcare professionals to provide a multidisciplinary healthcare approach
  6. Informing on the severity of illness and complications of treatments, inclusive of the benefits and burdens of feeding in all conceivable routes.
  7. Active in the patients care as the dietitian reporting on the nutritional status of the patient, as well as, the advisor to the physician and medicinal team, and
  8. Informing the legal decisions that may help determine the route of care for the patient, such as more aggressive or palliative care.  

Various Specialized Areas in Dietetics

      Clinical Dietitians are specialists in food nutrition services in hospitals, outpatient clinics, and private practices. They assess patient nutrition, develop dietary plans, provide patient counselling, and monitor patient's progress.

      Community Dietitians work in public health agencies, health and fitness clubs, and day care centers. They counsel people on food choices and direct programmes in nutrition awareness and disease prevention.
      Management Dietitians specialize in food service systems or clinical management. They work in hospitals, nursing homes, school food service, cafeterias, and restaurants. They manage personnel, plan and conduct employee training programmes, design food systems, and plan budgets.

      Consultant Dietitians are independent business people who work as nursing home consultants, book authors, and patient counselors in medical centers and fitness programmes. They also develop and evaluate food service systems and serve as independent advisors to industry.

CAREER OPPORTUNITIES: 

      Government Sector: They can work with government hospitals, government’s health department, schools, colleges, factories and office cafeterias for planning nutritional regiment.

      Sports and Health Clubs: They can also work for sports hostels and athletes camps. Health and recreation clubs, canteen and nursing care facilities also require the services of nutritionists and dietitians. Employment opportunities are also open to them in catering department of star hotels and restaurants.

      Teaching, Research and Development: Research and development involves conducting research on various food items to ensure their quality as well as studying the effects of various types of diet on the body chemistry in labs. The research dietician or nutritionists do research on nutritive value of food which helps to understand the various components of food we eat and the right type of food which provides a balanced mix of the essentials like vitamins, minerals etc. needed for the human body. They also can opt for research career mainly in universities, public or private sector research institutes, food product manufacturing companies and hospitals. Teaching the science of nutrition of dietetics in colleges and universities is also a good option.

      Mass Media: Moreover they could find openings in the mass media where top priority is given to disseminating vital information on healthy living.

      Gyms, Slimming Centers:

      Private Consultant/ Practitioner: Experienced dietitians may become assistant, associate, or director of a dietetic department, or become self-employed. Some dietitians specialize in areas such as renal or paediatric dietetics.  Besides all these they can also work as private consultant or private practitioner.

      Perks/Salary: Dietetics and Nutrition is a remunerative job. Those who are working in government hospitals, academic institutions, research institutes and other agencies have salaries as fixed by the government depending upon work profile and experience. Some private sector hotels, restaurants, food manufactures offer higher salary and attractive perks. Independent practitioner and private consultants also have good earning which largely depends upon number and nature of their clients.

      Entry level:  Salary varies from 10,000 to 25,000 rupees /month as per the abilities and experience. 

      Top position: Salary varies from rupees 25,000 to 90,000 per month depending on qualifications, position held, experience and location. The job prospects are good and are expected to grow in line with the average job.

List of Institutes of Nutrition and Dietetics in India

S.N. Name of College/ University Eligibility Offering Course
1

Avinasilingam   and Science and Preservation Higher Education for Women, Coimbatore - 641043

10+2 with science subjects Food Science and Preservation
2 All India Institute of Hygiene & Public Health, 110 - Chittranjan Avenue, Kolkata - 700 073. Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery recognized by the Medical Council of India. or Holder of University degree with Physiology or Chemistry or Clinical Nutrition with Dietetics as one of the subjects. Holder of degree in Domestic or Nursing from a recognized Institution or University One year Diploma in Dietetics
3 Shreemati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey Women’s University (SNDT), Mumbai - 400020 B.Sc. in clinical nutrition or Nutrition and Dietetics M.Sc. Clinical Nutrition, PG diploma in Dietetics and Nutrition
4 University of Home Economics (Delhi University) 10+2 with science subjects Diploma in Dietetics and Public Health Nutrition.
5 Lady Irwin College, New Delhi 10+2 with science subjects Diploma in Dietetics
6 Sam Higginbotom Institute of Agriculture, Allahabad, U.P B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics

M.Sc. Food Nutrition and Dietetics

7 Osmania University- Hydrabad, A.P 10+2 with science B.Sc. Home Science or Food Nutrition and Dietetics

B.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics, M.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics

8 Lady Irwin College, New Delhi 10+2 with science subjects Diploma in Dietetics
9 University of Mumbai, Mumbai 10+2 with science  subjects/graduation in Nutrition and Dietetics B.Sc./M.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics
10 Maharaja Syajiro University of Baroda, Vadodara; 10+2 with science subjects/graduation in Nutrition and Dietetics B.Sc./M.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics
11 Maharana Pratap University of Agriculture and Technology, Udaipur 10+2 with science subjects/graduation in Food, Nutrition and Dietetics B.Sc./M.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics
12 Acharya N.G. Ranga Agricultural University,Hyderabad. 10+2 with science subjects/ graduation in Foods, Nutrition and Dietetics B.Sc./M.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics
13 Alphonsa College,Pala - 686574 (Self-financing). (affiliated to Mahatma Gandhi University) B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics or B.Sc. Home Science M.Sc. Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics (Self-financing). www.alphonsacollege.org
14 St. Teresa’s College, Ernakulam - 682011 Bachelor’s degree of a recognized University with minimum 55% marks in Home Science, Botany, Zoology,Biochemistry, Biotechnology, Food Science and Quality Control and Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics PG diploma in clinical Nutrition and Dietetics www.tera sas.ac.in
15 Christian Medical College, Thorapadi Post, Bagayam, Vellore - 632 B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics or B.Sc. Home Science PG Diploma in dietetics
16 Sri Ramachandra and Research Institute (Deemed University), Chennai - 600116 B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics or B.Sc. Home Science. Admission is based on an Entrance Test One year PG Diploma in Clinical Nutrition
17 Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute (Deemed University), Chennai - 600116 B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics or B.Sc. Home Science. Admission is based on an Entrance Test One year PG Diploma in Clinical Nutrition
18 University of Mumbai, M.G. Road, Fort Mumbai - 400 032 B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics or B.Sc. Home Science PG Diploma in Dietetics and Applied Nutrition
19 Sri Padmavati Mahila Vishva - vidyalayam, Tirupati - 517502 B.Sc. Food, Nutrition and Dietetics or B.Sc. Home Science PG Diploma in Nutrition and Dietetics
20 Vivekananda College of Arts & Science for Women, Namakkal, T.N B.Sc. Nutrition and Dietetics M.Sc. Nutrition and Dietetics
21 Holy Cross Home Science College –Thoothukudi, T.N. B.Sc. Nutrition and Dietetics PG Diploma in Nutrition and Dietetics, M.Sc. in Dietetics and Food Management
22 Sri Ramachandra University-Chennai Tamil Nadu. B.Sc.in Clinical Nutrition or in Nutrition and Dietetics M.Sc. in Clinical Nutrition
 

List OF Institutes of Nutrition and Dietetics Through Distance Education in India

S.N. Name of College/ University Eligibility Offering Course
1 Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai (T.N.) visit www.mkudde.org within Bachelor’s degree in Dietetics, Food and Nutrition or a related area 1 Year Diploma in applied Nutrition and Dietetics, B.Sc. degree in Nutrition and Dietetics/Clinical Nutrition/ Home Science
2 Institute of Nutrition (Affiliated to NTR University of Health Sciences) MBBS or Master’s Degree in Biochemistry / Physiology /Foods & Nutrition / Dietetics M.Sc. (Applied Nutrition)
3 Sri Padmavati Mahila Vishwavidyalayam, Tirupati (A.P.) B.Sc. Home Science (50% Marks). 1 year Diploma in Nutrition and Dietetics
4 University of Bombay, M.G. Road, Fort, Mumbai - 400032 B.Sc Home Science 1 year Diploma in Nutrition and Dietetics
5 Bangalore University, Central College Campus, Dr. Ambedkar Veedhi, Bangalore - 560001 Pass in PUC or equivalent examination with Home Science / Chemistry as anoptional subject. 1 year Diploma Course in Applied Nutrition & Dietetics (Engineering Med.)
6 University of Home Economics (Delhi University 10+2 with science Diploma in Dietetics and Public Health Nutrition
7 Indira Gandhi National Open University. visit www.ignou.ac.in B.Sc. in Home Science or Food and Nutrition/ or Dietetics and Food Service Management or graduation in related field M.Sc. in Dietetics and Food Service Management
8 Utkal University, Bhubaneswar B.Sc. in Home Science or Foods and Nutrition/ or Dietetics and Food Service Management PG Diploma in Dietetics and Nutrition Management
9 Madhya Pradesh Bhoj (Open) University, Bhopal B.Sc. in Home Science or Food and Nutrition/ or Dietetics and Food Service Management PG Diploma in Dietetics and Therapeutic Nutrition for graduates.

    Graduates may continue their studies with the goal of obtaining a PhD or MD. The dietetics and biology programmes offer students the opportunity to obtain a dietetics degree.

(The author is Assistant Professor, Centre of Food Science and Technology, Institute of Agricultural Sciences, Banaras Hindu University,Varanasi.(U.P). Counselor in IGNOU for M.Sc. (Dietetics and Food Service Management)  e-mail: amritapoonia@yahoo.co.in, dramritapoonia@gmail.com) S

 
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