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Search Health Information    Registered Dietitian (RD)

Registered Dietitian (RD)

Registered dietitians (RDs) are health professionals who teach people about nutrition or develop diets to promote health. They can also specialize in nutritional counseling to help treat food-related psychological problems, such as anorexia or bulimia.

Dietitians work in hospitals, nursing homes, and schools. Registered dietitians also work in government, restaurant management, fitness, food companies, and private practices.

Nutritionists may not have any special training, but registered dietitians complete a bachelor's degree. They also must complete a supervised practice program and pass a national examination given by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). Some RDs hold additional certifications in specialized areas of practice, such as pediatric or renal nutrition, nutrition support, or diabetes education. These certifications are awarded through the CDR or other medical and nutrition groups.

Last Revised: November 11, 2013

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Rhonda O'Brien, MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator

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