The difference between Nutritionist, Dietitian, Personal trainer and Nutritional Therapy practitioner.
‘Nutritionist’ is not a protected title and therefore anybody can claim to be an expert in the field of nutrition and call themselves a nutritionist. They may not have qualifications or belong to a governing body; they may be linked to certain brands and products making advice biassed.
Registered Nutritionists normally have BSc and work in industry providing evidence-based information and guidance normally in research, education and in policy development. They are not trained in 1 to 1 consultation or governed by such a body.
A dietitian is somebody who has a degree in Nutrition and Dietetics and is regulated by the Health and Care Professions Council. Dieticians work with the NHS, specially trained to help patients who require special diets or feeding. Some will work directly with the public; however, they are more mainstream looking at symptoms, counting calories, using government guidelines.
A qualified Nutritional Therapist is someone who holds a BANT and CNHC registered degree or diploma. As such, a Nutritional Therapist is qualified to work in private practice and see clients on an individual or group basis.
Nutritional therapists usually work in private practice offering bespoke health plans, using nutrition and lifestyle interventions to help support the body towards maintaining health.
When taking advice from a nutritional therapist, always check they have appropriately qualified, are registered and belong to a regulated governing body as it is not a protected title.
As a registered nutritional therapist, in my clinic I specialise in menopausal issues e.g. weight management, hormonal health, stress and digestion. I also work as a BANT Registered Nutritionist providing comment for the media, giving talks, running corporate workshops and a wide range of other activities. BANT, my governing body has more to say about nutrition titles.