Dietitians and Nutritionists

(NOC 3132)

in All Health

Dietitians and nutritionists plan, implement and oversee nutrition and food service programs. They are employed in a variety of settings including hospitals, home health-care agencies and extended care facilities, community health centres, the food and beverage industry, educational institutions, and government and sports organizations, or they may work as private consultants.

Job Outlook

Average

Read more

  • Estimate Moderate growth employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 45 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Low rate of unemployment in 2016

Compared to: All Health

  • Estimate Strong growth employment change, 2017-2019
  • Estimate 4385 openings due to growth and retirements, 2017-2019
  • Estimate Low rate of unemployment in 2016

The employment outlook over the next few years for this occupational group is “average”, which indicates the chances of a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This is a moderate sized occupation in Nova Scotia so some job opportunities may occur through turnover. The number employed in this occupation is expected to grow moderately over the next few years, which will likely provide some additional opportunities for employment. With a large percent of workers being 55 years of age and older, retirements are expected to be a key contributor to employment opportunities over the coming years. Dietitians and Nutritionists most commonly work full-time hours. Furthermore, the jobs are typically permanent positions.

The median employment income for 58% of Dietitians and Nutritionists who worked full-time, year-round in 2015 was $68,187. Across all occupations in Nova Scotia, 59% of those who worked full-time year round had a median employment income of $43,600.
(Source: 2016 Census)

Hourly Pay

$25.00

Minimum

$32.00

Median

$40.18

Maximum

Annual Pay

$16,932

Minimum

$55,463

Median

$76,874

Maximum

Compared to: All Health

Hourly Pay

$16.38

Minimum

$25.50

Median

$41.00

Maximum

Annual Pay

$10,740

Minimum

$43,853

Median

$88,944

Maximum

About the job

Nature of work

Dietitians and nutritionists plan, implement and oversee nutrition and food service programs. They are employed in a variety of settings including hospitals, home health-care agencies and extended care facilities, community health centres, the food and beverage industry, educational institutions, and government and sports organizations, or they may work as private consultants.

Job duties

Dietitians and nutritionists perform some or all of the following duties:

  • Develop, administer and supervise nutrition and food preparation and service programs in hospitals, nursing homes, schools, company cafeterias or similar settings.
  • Evaluate nutritional status of individuals and provide nutrition guidance and consulting to health professionals, individuals, dietetic interns, community groups, government and the media.
  • Aid in the prevention and/or treatment of inadequate nutrition.
  • Plan, evaluate and conduct nutrition education programs and develop educational materials for various audiences.
  • Practice on an individual basis or as a member of an interdisciplinary team to determine nutritional needs of patients and to plan, implement, and evaluate normal and therapeutic menus to maintain and enhance general health.
  • Analyze current scientific nutritional studies, conduct research and evaluate program effectiveness to improve the nutritional value, taste, appearance and preparation of food.
  • Work within industry in the development, testing and evaluation, and marketing of food and nutrition products or as a company representative supplying product related information to health professionals.
  • Confer with other health professionals, community groups, government and the media to provide consultation and advice in areas of nutrition interpretation, intervention and policy.
  • Supervise training of dietetic interns. // Dietitians and nutritionists may specialize in areas such as administrative dietetics, clinical dietetics, community dietetics, public health nutrition or research dietetics.

Sample job titles

  • clinical dietitian
  • clinical nutritionist
  • dietitian
  • nutrition consultant
  • nutritionist
  • professional dietitian (P.Dt.)
  • registered dietitian (RD)
  • registered dietitian-nutritionist (RDN)
  • research dietitian
  • research nutritionist

Skills

To work in this field, you should be interested in helping people, working in partnership with others, and promoting healthy lifestyles. You should have an aptitude for science. Good judgement, organizational skills, and leadership skills are important. You must be creative, tactful, and tolerant of others.

Job requirements

  • Dietitians require a bachelor's or master's degree in dietetics, nutrition or a related field such as food and nutritional science or biochemistry and a period of supervised practical training.
  • Registration with a regulatory body is required in Nova Scotia for dietitians.
  • Membership in the national association, Dietitians of Canada, may be required for dietitians to practice.
  • Nutritionists usually require similar education and training as dietitians.
  • Registration with a regulatory body is required for nutritionists in Nova Scotia, (as a registered dietitian-nutritionist).
  • Membership with the national association, Dietitians of Canada, and/or a provincial regulatory body is available for nutritionists who have the same education and practical training as dietitians.

Other considerations

Most dietitians and nutritionists work regular hours; however, those in hospitals may work evenings, weekends, or holidays. Dietitians and nutritionists may progress to management positions through additional experience.

By the numbers

Quick look

465

employed in 2016

75.8%

employed full-time

12.9%

self employed

97.0%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
3%
Icons/male Created with Sketch.
38.7

median age

Compared to: All Health

36,515

employed in 2016

77.1%

employed full-time

10.2%

self employed

83.6%
Icons/female Created with Sketch.
16.4%
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43.5

median age

Where will I likely work?

63.4%

Halifax

10.9%

Southern

10.9%

Northern

7.9%

Cape Breton

6.9%

Annapolis Valley

Compared to: All NS Occupations

47.0%

Halifax

15.6%

Northern

12.9%

Annapolis Valley

12.7%

Cape Breton

11.8%

Southern

Top Industries of Employment

75.8%

Health Care and Social Assistance

6.3%

Retail Trade

5.3%

Other Professional Services

5.3%

Public Administration

3.2%

Other Services

What is the age of Employment?

41.2%

35-44

23.5%

25-34

17.6%

45-54

17.6%

55-64

Compared to: All Health

31.4%

45-54

27.6%

35-44

20.5%

55-64

15.2%

25-34

4.9%

65+

Top levels of education

61.9%

Bachelor's degree

$85,807 median annual income
18.6%

Doctorate

$89,535 median annual income
10.3%

University advanced certificate or diploma

$82,401 median annual income
4.1%

University certificate or diploma

N/A
4.1%

College certificate or diploma

N/A

Compared to: All Health

39.4%

College certificate or diploma

$36,693 median annual income
27.6%

Bachelor's degree

$57,186 median annual income
7.2%

Medicine, dentistry, veterinary, optometry

$83,000 median annual income
6.9%

High school

$24,119 median annual income
5.1%

Master's degree

$87,808 median annual income

Education & training

Dietetics and clinical nutrition services - Other

This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.

This instructional program class comprises any program not listed above that relates to Dietetics and Clinical Nutrition Services.

Institutions providing this program

Mount Saint Vincent University

166 Bedford Highway

Halifax, NS B3M 2J6

(902) 457-6117

Dietetics/dietitian (RD)

This program is typically offered at the college or university level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that prepares individuals to integrate and apply the principles of the food and nutrition sciences, human behaviour, and the biomedical sciences to design and manage effective nutrition programs in a variety of settings. These programs include courses in human nutrition; nutrient metabolism; the role of foods and nutrition in health promotion and disease prevention; planning and directing food service activities; diet and nutrition analysis and planning; supervision of food storage and preparation; client education; and professional standards and regulations.

There are no schools in Nova Scotia offering this program.

Human nutrition

This program may be offered at the college, trades, or university level.

This instructional program class comprises any program that focuses on the relationships between food consumption and human development and health. These programs include courses in the cellular and molecular processes of food processing in the human body, related metabolic processes, the relationship of food and nutrition to disease, and nutritional needs across the lifespan.

Institutions providing this program

St. Francis Xavier University

PO Box 5000

Antigonish, NS B2G 2W5

(902) 867-2219

Cape Breton University

PO Box 5300 1250 Grand Lake Road

Sydney, NS B1P 6L2

(888) 959-9995

Canadian School of Natural Nutrition

800 Windmill Rd, Suite 205

Dartmouth, NS B3B 1L1

(902) 425-0895

Nutrition sciences

This program is typically offered at the college or university level.

This instructional program class comprises any scientific program that focuses on the utilization of food for human growth and metabolism, in both normal and dysfunctional states, from the interdisciplinary perspective of the agricultural, human, biological, and biomedical sciences. These programs include courses in food science, biochemistry, physiology, dietetics, food and nutrition studies, biotechnology, biophysics, and the clinical sciences.

Institutions providing this program

Acadia University

15 University Avenue

Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6

(902) 542-2201

Employment requirements & contacts

Regulations

Dietitian or Nutritionist

Right to Title: This job is regulated in Nova Scotia. The job title is protected (you may not use this job title without a professional designation). Professional designation shows that the holder has met provincial requirements for the job. Employers may require professional designation, however, you do not need professional designation to legally work in this job.

Regulating body:
Nova Scotia Dietetic Association
380 Bedford Highway, Suite 301
Halifax, NS B3M 2L4
(902) 493-3034

Contacts

Health Care Human Resource Sector Council
380 Bedford Highway
Halifax, NS B3M 2L4
Tel: (902) 461-0871
Fax: (902) 461-9572
Dietitians of Canada
480 University Avenue, Suite 604
Toronto, ON M5G 1V2
Tel: (416) 596-0857
Fax: (416) 596-0603

Additional resources

Job postings

CLINICAL DIETITIAN - CLINICAL NUTRITION

CLINICAL DIETITIAN - CLINICAL NUTRITION

DIETITIAN - CLINICAL NUTRITION

DIETITIAN - CLINICAL NUTRITION

DIETITIAN - CLINICAL NUTRITION

DIETITIAN - CLINICAL NUTRITION

Cultural Competence of Dietetics in Canada, NUTR*2261*01

Research Methods in Nutr/Diet, NUTR*3313*02

Issues in Food Productive Development, NUTR*4400*02/GAHN*6400*02

Seminar in Nutrition, NUTR*4406*04

View all job postings