What Qualities Should A Dietitian Possess

Dieticians play an important role in the healthcare ecosystem. They are professionals who advise you on how to change your eating habits to be more nutritious and healthier. Not only that, but they help you in implementing nutritional programs that will help prevent disease and promote your overall well-being. However, dieticians should possess certain technical and personal qualities to be able to excel and connect with their patients. Being a well-rounded dietician who can be empathetic, analytical, and knowledgeable is key to creating a long-lasting patient relationship.  


All dietitians and nutritionists have to obtain a bachelor’s degree in clinical nutrition, human nutrition, or a related area. Programs will offer courses not only in nutrition, but a wide variety of other courses such as psychology, chemistry, and biology. However, this is enough to get you started, but not enough to continue excelling and learning. Many dietitians should consider obtaining the PALS certification and training alongside their degree. Basic CPR, first aid, and trauma management training will come in handy in dealing with many patients. A good dietician continues acquiring different certifications and taking courses to be more knowledgeable, not only in nutrition but in other areas.  


Technical Skills  

This skill is not related to technical fieldwork, rather technical skills with the tools and equipment needed to perform their duties. A lot of developments in the field have seen the addition of tools and equipment, such as calorimeters to assess metabolism, glucose meters for blood sugar readings, and other bioelectric machines to electronically measure body fat. A dietician needs to possess a high level of technological understanding and be able to use them with ease. Good technical skills will also be important when using analytical software programs, clinic databases, and patient management programs.    


Analytical Skills

A key quality any dietician needs to have is analytical perceptiveness. Dieticians work with a lot of symptoms that require problem-solving. In applying their nutritional knowledge, building a case for each patient and being able to customize the correct eating plan is crucial. Cutting the learning curve short through courses on United Medical Education can be crucial to getting this done properly. With the right education, they can be able to relate their scientific knowledge and their nutritional knowledge together and come up with a targeted plan through deductions and analysis.  


People Skills

Similar to a lot of medical roles, being a dietician is a very people-oriented position, so the practitioner must be able to work with a diverse range of people. A good dietician should possess good listening skills, empathy, and be able to build rapport with their patients. They should be able to explain to all types of audiences their message without using too much technical and scientific jargon. Additionally, they should be able to listen and communicate effectively; listening to their patients and addressing all concerns without rushing or interrupting them. They should also have the patience to explain things more than once and at the pace of the patients’ understanding. This will help in comforting patients and helping them adjust to a new lifestyle of healthy eating.


The key to becoming a successful dietician is to adopt qualities that are both technical and personality-related. With a combination of scientific knowledge attained through courses at United Medical Education, and interpersonal skills, you will be able to build a relationship with your patients that will be based on comfort and trust. In turn, they will entrust you in helping them change their lifestyle to a better and nutritionally healthier one.  


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Written by HealthStatus Crew
Medical Writer & Editor

HealthStatus teams with authors from organizations to share interesting ideas, products and new health information to our readers.

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