Nutritionists, Nutritional Therapists and Dieticians
Nutrition professionals come in many different guises and their educational qualifications and experience may differ. Qualified and registered professionals will generally be Nutritionists, Nutrional Therapists or Dieticians.
Dieticians generally work within the NHS. They will have taken a four year undergraduate dietetic degree or a postgraduate course accredited by the HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council.)
Registered Nutritionists (RNutr) will have taken a 3 or 4 year undergraduate degree, or a one year postgraduate degree accredited by AfN (Association for Nutritionists), plus three or more years practice experience before they are qualified and accepted by AfN as a registered nutritionist. As an interim, once study competences have been gained but before an approved period of practice experieince achieved, a person may be registered with AfN as an Associate Nutritionist (ANutr)
A Registered Nutritional Therapist uses a wide range of tools to assess and identify potential nutritional imbalances, enabling them to help individuals improve their health and wellbeing. There are many different routes to qualification, but all training must be accredited by the Nutritional Therapy Education commission (NTEC) which affords entry on the register held by the CNHC (Complementary and National Healthcare Council) BANT (British Association for Applied Nutrition & Nutritional Therapy) is the professional body for Registered Professional Nutritionists.
Nutrition professionals, registered with an appropriate association, will also undergo regular Continual Professional Development (CPD) to ensure they maintain standards.
Many complementary therapists may also offer broad-based nutritional advice as part of their service and based on years of experience but for expert nutritional advice, particularly if relating to specific health issues, always seek a qualified professional.