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Why study nutrition?

Nutrition, diet and health are under constant consideration in both our everyday lives and the media's spotlight. Poor diet and a lack of the correct nutrients can lead to a variety of conditions both physiologically and psychologically, such as obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart problems and depression. Our increased awareness of the importance of a healthy diet has led to a high demand for guidance and support from qualified nutritionists, with more people wishing to take control of their health by being more careful with what they eat. As well as getting the highly rewarding opportunity to help people make life-changing health choices, studying nutrition can also lead to a variety of exciting career paths.

Nutritionist providing information to a client

What will I learn from a nutrition degree?

Nutrition degrees primarily focus on the dietary matters and health issues that are associated with the food we eat. It is a varied discipline that combines biology, chemistry and social sciences, with multiple specializations that students can choose to center their studies around. The knowledge gained from a nutrition degree will prepare graduates for a variety of career paths in healthcare, sports science, education and the food industry.

When studying for a nutrition degree, you will learn in great detail about the different food, vitamin and mineral groups that can aid specific medical problems and contribute towards a balanced, healthy diet. Nutrition degrees also include the study of behaviors and social factors that are linked to our dietary choices, as well as the ways the impact of certain diseases, mental health conditions and other health problems can be reduced through eating healthily.

The majority of institutions that provide nutrition degrees also hold partnerships with companies and public health organisations working within the field, allowing nutrition students to gain invaluable hands-on practical experience with counselling methods, food regulation practices and dietary analysis skills. 

Careers in nutrition – what can I do with a nutrition degree?

Nutrition graduates have a broad selection of career paths to choose from. The fundamental task of a nutritionist or dietician is to help people to feel better through the food they eat, and this is required in many institutions and industries.

Hospitals, clinics, schools and many other organizations often require a nutritionist to ensure that the food they provide meets the neccessary regulations and dietary requirements of the consumers. Nutritionists also work on a one-to-one basis, providing information and counselling to their clients in order to help them reach their health goals or alleviate medical problems. This can lead to the creation of meal plans tailored to suit the needs of the individual. Nutritionists will also offer advice and personal support throughout the process. 

Some potential career fields for nutritionists include:

  • Clinical Nutritionist/Dietician 
  • Food Education 
  • Food Research
  • Sports Nutrition         
  • Private Consultant
  • Personal Training

According to PayScale.com, a nutritionist earns an average salary of $42,633 per year.


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