February 16, 2016
CHICAGO – March is National Nutrition Month®, when the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics reminds everyone to return to the basics of healthful eating. It is also when the Academy celebrates Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day, honoring the contributions of RDNs as the food and nutrition experts. This year, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day will take place March 9.
"The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is honored to take time during National Nutrition Month to recognize registered dietitian nutritionists, the experts who have dedicated their professional lives to helping people improve their health through food and nutrition," said registered dietitian nutritionist and Academy Spokesperson Vandana Sheth.
Since 2008, the second Wednesday in March has marked Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day.
"Because virtually anyone can call him or herself a 'nutritionist,' it is vital for consumers to know where they should turn when they are seeking timely, accurate and science-based nutrition advice from an educated, trained and trusted professional," Sheth said. "Consumers should turn to a registered dietitian nutritionist."
Registered dietitian nutritionists meet stringent academic and professional requirements, including earning at least a bachelor's degree, completing a supervised practice program and passing a registration examination. RDNs must also complete continuing professional educational requirements to maintain registration. More than half of all RDNs have also earned master's degrees or higher.
"Congress and federal health agencies like the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have recognized that registered dietitian nutritionists' expertise in nutrition and health is more extensive than any other health profession," Sheth said.
The majority of RDNs work in the treatment and prevention of disease (administering medical nutrition therapy, as part of medical teams), often in hospitals, HMOs, public health clinics, nursing homes or other health care facilities. Additionally, RDNs work throughout the community in schools, fitness centers, food management, food industry, universities, research and private practice.
"Conversations about nutrition are happening almost everywhere – in homes, classrooms, workplaces, restaurants, government facilities and doctor's offices. It is also in all of these places that you can find RDNs working to help everyone understand the role that food plays in their lives, reach and maintain a healthy weight and prevent and manage diseases, all while enjoying delicious foods that fit their lifestyles and tastes," Sheth said.
Learn more about what a registered dietitian nutritionist can do for you and find an RDN in your area at eatright.org.
The Academy's website (eatright.org) includes helpful articles, recipes, videos and educational resources to spread the message of good nutrition and an overall healthy lifestyle for people of all ages, genders and backgrounds. Consumers are also encouraged to follow National Nutrition Month on the Academy’s social media channels including Facebook and Twitter using the #NationalNutritionMonth hashtag.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is the world's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. The Academy is committed to improving the nation’s health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education and advocacy. Visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics at eatright.org.