Can’t get enough of your fruits and veggies? Constantly keeping up with the latest superfoods that are taking the world by storm? It sounds like healthy eating is an integral part of your life.
If you’ve got a passion for nutritious noms, you might have considered a Degree in Nutrition. But what do your career options look like down this uncommon pathway? In this article, we’re revealing 5 awesome career options that nutrition graduates can choose from. Here we go!
Nutritionists are experts in determining how nutrients in food will affect individuals. Based on this knowledge, they advise their clients on healthy eating, how to maintain a balanced lifestyle and what foods to consume to avoid illnesses.
As a general nutritionist, some of your tasks may include:
- Performing dietary and basic physical screening for clients
- Providing advice on good eating habits and nutrition issues
- Developing meal plans for clients based on their preferences, needs and goals (e.g. lose weight, add muscle, reduce sugar)
- Evaluating the outcomes of meal plans and proposing changes as required
- Spearheading initiatives (e.g. seminars, talks) to promote better diets and lifestyles
- Carrying out research to determine how the human body responds to nutrients
Nutritionists can often be found working at health or wellness centres, fitness centres, research institutions, restaurants or juice bars focusing on healthy living, and other health-focused brands.
#2. Public health nutritionist
Instead of catering to individual clients, public health nutritionists are dedicated to improving the nutritional practices of society as a whole.
In this line of work, you could be involved in:
- Researching to identify dietary issues faced by the population or a community
- Working closely with government authorities to develop effective health policies (e.g. Malaysian Dietary Guidelines)
- Championing education programmes (e.g. [email protected]) to inform the public about the importance of nutrition
- Working with schools to ensure that they offer healthy meals for children
Public health nutritionists generally work in the government sector and in non-profit organisations focusing on public health.
#3. Sports and fitness nutritionist
Nutritionists who specialise in this field advise athletes or those looking to get in shape by helping them discover their optimum diet plan.
Unlike general nutritionists, sports and fitness nutritionists recommend supplements and create customised fitness-focused nutritional plans that will increase stamina and endurance while aiding post-workout recovery.
These nutritionists typically work for fitness, wellness and weight loss centres and give private consultations to athletes and fitness enthusiasts, where they evaluate their biochemical composition and metabolic rate to tailor a nutrition program to meet their client’s needs.
#4. Corporate wellness consultant
Nutritionists who delve into corporate wellness are responsible for developing programmes to help companies improve the well-being of their employees. This will help companies in the long run as it will boost productivity and reduce the cost of staff healthcare, since employees would be less likely to get sick if they take better care of themselves.
As a corporate wellness consultant, some of your responsibilities include:
- Analysing the major health issues faced by employees of a company
- Evaluating a company’s wellness programme
- Proposing and implementing wellness initiatives (e.g. health and nutrition talks, weekly group workouts) to improve employee health and fitness
- Recommending healthy workplace policies
#5. Food & beverage consultant
Nutritionists in this field work with players in the food and beverage industry, such as food brands, food manufacturers and restaurants. Their job is to help these companies effectively market their products while balancing the consumer’s need for accurate information about the food they’re eating.
As a food and beverage consultant, some of your tasks may include:
- Producing and auditing nutritional information required on food labels for food manufacturers
- Developing nutrition and health claims for food companies to be used for marketing and on the packaging (e.g. “Ribena is packed with vitamin C”)
- Reviewing marketing materials to ensure that health claims are accurate and in line with regulations
- Creating nutritious yet flavoursome menus for customers at health-focused restaurants, cafes and juice bars
So there you have it — 5 jobs you can pursue as a nutrition graduate. While a Degree in Nutrition may be a niche field of study, the skills that you will pick up during your undergraduate programme will equip you with the flexibility to work in a variety of different areas in the food and wellness industries.