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Careers in Nutrition

09 Jun 2013

Do you have a passion for food and healthy eating? Do you have good communication skills? If this is what you have, consider a career in nutrition. A career in nutrition has gained popularity as more and more people become conscious about their health. This awareness has led to an increase in the number of people seeking advice  from  qualified nutritionists as people realise that quality of life depends on the quality of food we eat and a healthy lifestyle. Nutritionists are trained professionals equipped with the knowledge and skills to implement and evaluate health and nutrition interventions with the aim of improving the wellbeing of individuals, communities and the population as a whole. They work together with other healthcare professionals in formulating, implementing and monitoring nutrition policies, programmes and guidelines. Nutrition career pathThis profession encompasses many levels of expertise and a wide variety of career possibilities. Nutritionists can work in government agencies and private organisations in nutrition promotion activities. These include assessment of nutritional status, development of nutrition training manuals and guidelines, conduct of nutrition education and health promotion, undertaking surveys and research, formulation, coordination and evaluation of nutrition activities. Individuals with a nutrition degree can find employment in the food industry. They can work in diverse roles, ranging from regulatory roles to ensure nutritional claims and product labeling are appropriate, to being involved in nutrition research for supporting new product claims. The food industry also engages nutritionists for marketing, advertising, advisory and communication roles. Another industry that a nutritionist can work in is the wellness industry in the provision of healthcare services and products. Nutritionists can also be in advisory roles in fitness and sports nutrition industries, providing advice in matters related to body composition, weight management, energy and nutrient requirements, and dietary supplements. Teaching, research, scientific writing, giving presentations and contributing to the training of future nutritionists are areas that some nutritionists may be interested in. They can choose to work in these areas in universities and research institutes. Nutritionists with sufficient years of experience can offer consultancy in nutrition services, education and advocacy to corporate and government sectors, professional societies and the mass media. They can also work as freelance nutritionists and are engaged in offering nutrition screenings, education, and healthy lifestyle management to individuals and in group settings. Some nutritionists choose to work in emergency relief or development projects in low income countries. In order to become a nutritionist, you must undergo a formal education / training which will equip you with the necessary knowledge and skills. This is one of the programmes offered at the International Medical University (IMU), Malaysia’s first and most established private medical and healthcare university founded 21 years ago.

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