Searching for a Good Nutritionist/Dietitian: Hints and Tips
Nutrition is an important aspect of our health and well-being, working with a qualified health professional can help us to achieve our dietary goals and improve our overall health outcomes. However, with so many professionals and programs claiming to offer nutrition advice, it can be challenging to know where to start your search. There are two types of Nutritionists: Registered Dietitians and Registered Nutritionists. Dietitians are registered with the BDA (British Dietetic Association) and are allowed to practice, either on the NHS or privately. There are other type of Allied Health Professional is a Registered Nutritionist. These professionals are either degree trained or have substantial experience to practise within their field and expertise. Nutritionists work in areas such as the Media, Hospitality, Research, Government, NHS and Public Health Services amongst others
Accessing a Dietitian can be challenging as they tend to be available by a referral by the NHS, however due to the emergence of online health platforms that hires Dietitians and Nutritionists it can be easier to get access to a Dietitian as quick as a click on a mobile app platform. The best place to start on the search for a Dietitian is to access the BDA website, where you can be able to search based on location including the types of areas that you need support in. BDA
All of the Dietitians that are registered with the BDA are registered and have undergone thorough checks to ensure that the support that they offer to clients are to the highest standard. This is similar to a Registered Nutritionist. Access to a Nutritionist can also be quite simple on this website: AFN
Another way for finding a good nutritionist is to ask for opportunities and recommendations from healthcare providers, friends, family members, or colleagues who have worked with a Nutritionist/DIetitian in the past. Personal referrals can be a valuable source of information, as they can give you insight into their approach, communication style, and outcomes. This can also include looking at reviews on various platforms that offer these kinds of services, but also exploring their various price ranges. The question to ask is if the price is too cheap? If it is too cheap will the service, be of a high standard. The aim personally is to try and get the best service as possible, but not to be too expensive. Try to look at the costings and then start off from there. Tik Tok and Instagram are also a great way to gain access to a Nutritionist/Dietitian, as they can usually offer their services at a great cost, and at the same time gain access to a range of their services all at the touch of an app on a mobile phone/Tablet/Laptop. When exploring potential Nutritionists/Dietitians, it is important to consider their areas of expertise and specialisation. Some may specialise in sports nutrition, weight management, chronic disease management, or other areas, and their approach and strategies may vary accordingly. When looking for a Nutritionist/Dietitian make sure their expertise aligns with your specific needs and goals. Additionally, consider their approach to working with clients. Some may offer one-on-one counselling or coaching sessions, while others may work in group settings or offer online programs. Think about your personal preferences and needs when selecting them.
Finally, consider the cost and accessibility of the nutritionist's services. Some nutritionists may accept insurance or offer sliding scale fees, while others may require upfront payment or have a set fee schedule. Additionally, consider the nutritionist's location and availability, and whether their services are accessible to you in terms of distance and scheduling.
Finding a good nutritionist requires diligence, research, and careful consideration of the professional's qualifications, areas of expertise, approach, and accessibility. By using these tips and strategies, you can find a qualified nutritionist who can help you achieve your dietary goals and improve your overall health and well-being.
In the next Post I will be discussing the various challenges of accessing these in detail, in the meantime below is a comment from a Nutritionist from Japan:
Growing up in Japan, I fell in love with food at a young age. One of my favourite things to do is to cook for friends and family.
Japanese people are very intentional about their diet — and it shows: Japan is home to some of the world's longest-living people. My mom, a cancer survivor, is 86 years old, and my aunt is still going strong at 98.
When I moved to the U.S, I tried a variety of popular American diets and food trends. But my body didn't respond well to a lot of it. Now, as a nutritionist, my approach centres mostly around Japanese eating habits.
I always recommend foods that have medicinal properties and that promote longevity. Here are six foods you'll never see me eating:
1. Hot dogs
Processed meats are almost impossible to avoid if you live in the U.S. But not only are they high in salt, they also contain saturated fats that can raise your risk of certain cancers like colorectal cancer and breast cancer.
What I eat instead: When I want something high in protein but low in salt and preservatives, I opt for tofu. I also love multigrain rice balls with tuna wrapped in seaweed, which is packed with important minerals such as iron, calcium, folate and magnesium.
2. Fast food hamburgers
When McDonald's opened its very first location in Osaka, Japan, it was a big deal. I only ate there as a treat on rare occasions.
But like with most fast food, it made me feel bloated and tired, so I've since stopped. Plus, it's high in salt, trans fats and saturated fats, which can raise the level of LDL "bad" cholesterol in your blood.
What I eat instead: Tofu burgers are surprisingly tasty. I like to put a tofu patty on a crispy brown rice ball, topped with some edamame. It's both an economical and environmentally friendly choice.
3. Sugary breakfast cereal/ Sugary Sodas
When we're in a rush and have no time to eat in the morning, it's tempting to default to cereal. But I never eat any with added sugars or ingredients that I don't recognize.
Too much sugar can lead to issues with your blood pressure, weight gain, increased inflammation, and put you at risk for diabetes.
What I eat instead: My go-to healthy breakfast alternative is natto, a Japanese dish made from fermented soybeans, with some multigrain rice.
4. Cream cheese
Dairy is a great source of calcium and protein, but not all cheese products will give you the best health benefits.
I tend to avoid cream cheese because the most popular consumer brands will only get you around five grams of protein. And just one ounce of it can contain a whopping 27 milligrams of cholesterol.
What I eat instead: My favourite flavourful spread is kinako, which is made from soy flour and sesame paste.
You don't have to eliminate all candies from your diet. Dark chocolate, for example, can be rich in disease-fighting antioxidants. But too much sugary, corn starch-laden sweets can be harmful to your heart and your brain.
What I eat instead: To satisfy my sweet cravings, I'll have chia seed pudding with honey or agave syrup, frozen bananas, or unsweetened dark chocolate. Of course, a small piece of cake with friends is perfectly fine on special occasions.