Career Opportunities in Dietetics

Job opportunities in the field of dietetics continue to grow in a variety of areas including health care, sports nutrition, and public policy. Registered Dietitian (RD) or Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) serve an integral role in each of these settings. The educational background and training provided prepares RD/RDNs to work among diverse populations with various needs.

Clinical Dietetics

  • •  As part of a healthcare team, RDs educate and counsel patients about nutrition, provide medical nutrition therapy through assessment of nutritional needs, nutritional diagnoses, and an individual nutrition care plan
  • •  May work in hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient settings or the military.

Food Service Management

  • •  As part of the management team, dietitians plan and oversee everything from food purchasing and preparation to managing of staff
  • •  May work in schools, nursing home facilities, healthcare facilities, hotels, restaurants, colleges, day care centers, or the military.

Business, Industry and Sales

  • •  Food firms need people with nutrition expertise for communications, consumer affairs, public relations, marketing, and product development
  • •  May work in sales and promotion , the food industry, employee wellness programs, marketing, and even supermarkets

Community Nutrition

  • •  As a member of the community health care team, RDs work with the community to plan and coordinate community- wide health programs to improve their quality of life through healthy eating habits.
  • •  May work in a variety of settings including WIC, community gardens, and community-based clinics

Private Practice/Entrepreneurial

  • •  Working in their own business or under contract with health-focused companies, RDs may provide advice on services in nutrition care, sports nutrition or food service management
  • •  May work with food vendors, restaurant managers, nursing home residents, company employers, Extension Agencies, supermarkets or private clients

Sports Nutrition and Wellness Programs

  • •  Applying sports nutrition science to fueling fitness, sport and athletic performance, sports RDs provide nutritional information for those seeking to achieve optimal performance
  • •  May work for colleges and university athletic departments, corporations, health care organizations, professional sports organizations, private practice, health and fitness centers, or the military

Public Policy

  • •  Public policy. Registered dietitians work to assist in developing dietary recommendations or guidelines that benefit the public’s health and well-being.
  • •  May work at the local, state, or national level


  • •  Working closely with investigators and colleagues, RDs implement, evaluate, and provide educational experiences for dietetic, medial, nursing or other allied health students
  • •  May work in a clinical research center in hospitals or academic centers