A popular field of study and the growing demand for the services of the dietary industry are related to the question “how much does a dietitian earn?”.
It is difficult to answer this question because, except for public sector institutions, the range of activities of nutritionists is relatively wide. They work in various positions, where the set of duties and practice determines different income.
The profession itself is becoming very popular. More and more study programs, dietary courses and public interest in the subject of dietetics contribute to the development of this profession.
Dietitian – qualifications vs. earnings
As in any industry, years of experience, skills and additional qualifications have a huge impact on earnings. The place where the dietitian is hired is also important. The finances of the public sector differ from private institutions.
Nutritionists from smaller towns and medium-sized cities earn relatively less than employees holding the same position in big cities or even so-called asphalt jungles.
Job perspectives for a dietitian
Before asking how much does a dietitian ear, let’s review the market.
The demand for dietary services increases every year. The number of people burdened with diet-related diseases is also growing. Obesity and overweight are social problems. It is estimated that, in 2025, approximately 30% of people will be obese.
If you are bored with your work in the accounting office or tired of filling Excel’s cells, start thinking about health and fitness industry.
Excessive body weight contributes to an increased mortality rate. Obese people get sick and die. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), over 2.5 million people worldwide die from diseases related to being obese.
Therefore, the need for services provided by qualified dietitians is growing. Consuming highly processed foods, lack of exercise and unhealthy eating habits point those nutritionists have a lot to do in the next few years.
In addition, various types of diets (Dukan, Copenhagen, vegan, vegetarian, etc.) are also becoming more popular. Therefore, the demand for individual nutritional plans is still growing. The dietitian not only composes diets but also assesses the health of the patients and determines whether the diet will work for them.
Apart from trends in nutrition (because a dietitian also deals with such diets), diseases that require a specialist diet, for example coeliac syndrome (where a gluten-free diet is implemented), are becoming more and more common. The demand for dietary services is growing, and career development and nutritionists’ earnings improve.
How much does a dietitian earn with his own clinic?
It should be remembered that running a sole trader – from the moment of its establishment – carries costs. Being a practitioner in your own office, you need to think over financial obligations in advance. It involves the following expenses:
- disposable (for example medical equipment),
- permanent (operation, insurance, taxes, employee remuneration).
The dietitian’s office is equipped with appropriate office equipment (computer, printer), software (diet calculators and other programs dedicated to dietitians) and devices supporting work with the patient (body composition analyzer, stadiometer, blood pressure meter, calipers, educational sheets, medical manuals).
A thriving dietary clinic requires more hands to work overtime. Employing an assistant–specialist is associated with bigger expenses, but it is also a guarantee of work continuity and efficiency. This is how you ‘make’ your brand.
Running your own business, requiring a separate office, is a monthly cost: property (potential loan), tenancy, service fees (water, electricity), commuting, office supplies, etc.
Dietitian – working in one’s own office
The owner of the clinic bears the costs of continuous training. However, in the profession of a dietitian, as with any medical specialty, what counts the most is competence. The “hidden costs” could include getting a major, but this is an investment, not a cost.
Dietetics is a developing field, so you should constantly update your knowledge. Rules, norms, types of diets and recommendations change all the time. New scientific research proves their effectiveness or lack of influence on various diseases and dysfunctions of the organism.
In the profession of nutritionist, you can count on a gradual increase in remuneration over the next few years. Given the worrying statistics of diseases resulting from dietary mistakes, including rising obesity, maybe even less?
Starting your private dietitian practice might seem difficult but with the right promotion you can get your first patients right away. The visual identification is important so instead of spending hours testing best online graphics programs, just hire a professional that will take care of it.
How much does a dietitian earn in other countries
Although the amount of earnings depends on many factors (experience, how many years one has been working as a dietician, education, competences), there are significant differences in the salaries of dietitians practicing in other countries.
- England: PLN 14,000 gross
- Germany: PLN 17,000 gross
- California $ 58,229 per year = approx. PLN 217,116.14
- New York / Hollywood 200,000–300,000 USD = approx. PLN 742,652.83–1,114,156.59
Remember, prices of apartments, current bills and food products abroad may significantly differ from the cost of living in your country.
Work for a dietitian – qualifications
A dietitian must show qualifications. At individual work positions an employee is required to have a dietician qualification if he or she holds a position in a medical entity that is not an enterprise.
Each of the positions listed below is associated with at least one of the listed requirements (graduation considering the date of the beginning of education).
It’s important to know every new trend in nutrition and keep yourself up to date. You should be familiar with gluten-free diet, paleo, keto and many many more to come.
A dietitian – professional duties
A dietitian can assess the nutritional status of a patient in several ways. A dietitian is:
- a graduate of post-secondary secondary school, who obtained a dietitian diploma;
- a graduate of a higher learning institution in the field of dietetics, if the syllabus included at least the content of education and the number of hours covered by the core curriculum in the profession of dietitian and obtained a bachelor’s or master’s degree.
The dietitian deals with:
- planning, supervision and application based on scientific grounds – individual and collective nutrition of population groups,
- the requirements and importance of the diet,
- ways of preparing meals,
- planning and composing meals,
- the importance of nutrients,
- the use of clinical nutrition, with the simultaneous use of natural and medicinal products for special nutritional purposes in the treatment of diseases,
- health and nutrition assessment,
- work on menus included in various types of diets,
- calculating nutritional values,
- supervision of the quality of raw materials and food products and the conditions in which they are stored,
- diagnosis and preventative action as well as participation in the treatment of obesity and malnutrition (also in hospital),
- anthropometric measurement:
- body circumference measurements,
- body height,
- body weight,
- circumference of the hips, waist, hips, shoulders,
- thickness of skin and fat folds,
- WHR ratio of waist circumference to hip circumference,
- BMI body mass index,
- WHtR ratio of waist circumference to body height,
- additional measurements, including body composition analysis,
- nutritional education:
- planning, conducting and evaluating preventive programs,
- developing educational materials,
- nutrition policy management, research and training,
- interdisciplinary consultations:
- health professionals,
- and even responsibilities of a human resources department if he/she hires people.
Work for a dietitian – where else can you work as a dietitian?
List of job offers – dietitian:
- lecturer, trainer in the field of healthy eating,
- laboratory – scientific research,
- nutrition-related institutions,
- work in the addiction treatment ward and clinic (obesity, bulimia, anorexia),
- corporations – working in offices as a dietitian for employees, coaching and support,
- shops, supermarkets – working with healthy food, dietary supplements,
- sales or pharmaceutical representative in companies related to food, mass catering, slimming preparations and supplements.