Dietary advice may be plentiful, but good dietary advice can only be obtained from a professional nutritionist. Don’t be fooled by all of the advertisements that promise quick results, because most of the time you will just waste precious time and establish no healthy habits. You need a good nutritionist that understands your goals and is ready with the knowledge of how you will fulfil them. The only question is: how do you find a nutritionist like that. Here are a few tips to get you started:
- Consider your dietary and health needs first – before you even begin searching for a dietitian, you should consider your needs first. Is your primary goal losing weight? Do you have a medical condition that you want to manage? Are there any food sensitivities or allergies that you have to be careful with? There is a lot that nutritionists can help you with, and some of them have certain specialisations, which are better suited for your goals. Once you have considered your goal, it is time to look for an expert to get on your case.
- Check their credentials – nowadays everyone can claim they are an ‘expert’ on something, especially nutritional health and dieting. However, because of this reality, it is very important to make certain the expert you are consulting with is trained and has the knowledge in the field you are interested in. You should always check their credentials, see if they are members of a professional body and how much experience they have had with people like you. If possible, check for references and even ask some of their previous clients about their work process and results.
- What is their motivation for working with you? – there is no denying the bad reputation that some of the elements of the wellness industry have. Many of the so-called experts only want to sell their protein shakes, nutrition bars and other products with very little proven effect to the public. That is why you should always consider the business model of your nutritionist. If they are focused on selling you expensive products, maybe you are better off looking elsewhere. Avoid multi-level marketing schemes, because you may end up being provided with dietary products that don’t work. A reputable nutritionist will be more interested in providing you with good menu plans, and a list of whole foods and will take the time to understand your issues, like cravings, emotional eating, obesity, etc. In other words, they should be more of a coach than a marketer of questionable products.
- Check their experience – a good dietitian will be open and transparent about what they have to offer and what qualifications they have. You can tell a lot about them just by checking out their website or Linkedin profile. When it comes to nutrition, many things expand the knowledge of a professional in the field. Namely, you should be interested if they have a degree in health science or sport.
- Learn the difference between a nutritionist and a dietitian – on some levels, these are interchangeable words. However, there is sometimes a subtle difference. A nutritionist is someone who has a tertiary qualification and provides a range of services that all relate to nutrition. A dietitian delivers these same services, in addition to addressing certain medical conditions. They can even provide medical nutrition therapy if need be.
Following all of these tips can help you find the best nutritionist for your needs and benefit from their services.