Nutrition Technicians are not registered Nutritionists. They work with and under the supervision of a registered nutritionist to help plan and implement nutritional services and programs. Also known as dietetic technicians, they can work in a variety of different settings including hospitals, nursing homes, retirement homes, schools, community health centers, or correctional facilities.
Nutrition Technicians work with a variety of different types of patients and have a lot of work duties. They may meet with patients and interview them regarding their medical histories and dietary intakes. They help plan their patients’ meals to fit their dietary needs or health condition. They may discuss problem areas and report on patients’ progress to the supervising Nutritionist.
They may also work in a food service facility such as a nursing home, retirement home, school or prison. Nutrition Tecnicians plan meals and menus, and ensure food quality and safety standards. They may also devise and implement new food service systems into facilities.
Nutrition Technicians are not required to have a Bachelor’s degree. However, most employers require them to have an Associate’s degree in a nutrition related field from an accredited community college that is approved by the American Dietetic Association. Typical required courses are in biology, chemistry, algebra, English, home economics, physical education, business, psychology, and computers.
Aspiring Nutrition Technicians also combined their courses for study with practical experience as part of their training. Once they complete the college program, students must then also pass an examination to become certified or registered, depending on their state requirement.