What is a Registered Dietitian?

Registered Dietitians (RD’s) are health professionals specializing in food and nutrition. In order to earn the nationally-recognized credential of RD, a candidate must complete a Bachelors Degree in Food and Nutrition and/or Masters Degree in Nutrition or American Dietetic internship. RD status also requires successfully passing the National Registration Exam and accumulating a sufficient number of on-going Continuing Education credits annually. A RD is sometimes referred to as a nutritionist, however, a nutritionist who has not achieved RD status may not advertise herself or practice as a Registered Dietitian. Also, in Texas, Registered Dietitians are licensed (LD) to prevent misuse of the term nutritionist.

RD’s and LD’s are the only health professionals permitted to counsel patients on medically-necessary dietary intervention. There are no laws about what credentials are needed to go by the title of “nutritionist”.

Health insurance often covers medical nutrition therapy (appointments with your dietitian) for diagnoses that are deemed “Medically Necessary.” These often include: Diabetes, Hypertension (High Blood Pressure), Sleep Apnea, Food Allergies, Unexplained Weight Loss/Gain, Hyperlipidemia (High Cholesterol), Gastrointestinal Problems, Eating Disorders, Kidney Disease, etc.

If you are not sure if your insurance will cover our services, please contact your insurance company for verification.