Happy Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day, and an even happier National Nutrition Month!
Dietetics has been my life for almost 35 years. I am honored to be a dietitian. When I started my career there were limited options for dietitians – hospitals, nursing homes, WIC, government, academia and other institutions. There were dietitians who were “doing their own thing” but they were few and far between.
In 1986, I started Nutrition Dimension with my husband and began the transformation from employee to entrepreneur, which is not as easy as it sounds. While being an entrepreneur I was not able to give up my other passion, clinical dietetics and nutrition support, which I kept on doing for 25 years.
Filling in the cracks and thriving
When I look at the profession, I am astounded at the transformation. No longer do we have to be in “traditional” jobs as there are many more opportunities for us now. Entrepreneurial dietitians abound in private practice, as authors, spokespersons, bloggers, business owners, etc. Dietitians are found working for major league sports teams, health insurance companies, health communication companies, corporations, fitness centers, newspapers, and radio and public relations companies. Some of those public relations companies are even owned by dietitians! I am so impressed with the ingenuity of RDNs who have created businesses or found a niche inside an institution. What we do is hard, and you are all to be commended.
Most important of all, we are now looked upon as thought leaders, decision makers and professionals who influence consumers. Have you ever wondered why so many companies target their marketing to dietitians? The answer is simple. We control budgets and influence where people spend money. Businesses realize how important we are to their bottom line. We may not be large in numbers, but we do have clout. This was not true 35 years ago and shows how far we have come.
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I am so proud of my chosen profession and want to thank you all for a job well done — enjoy and share this video in honor of your contributions!
What do you do and what impact do you feel you’ve had on the profession? Tell us in the comments below!