PDA

View Full Version : Dietitians in the HIz-OusE



lamb
10-14-2008, 10:33 PM
So I know a few of us are dietitians, but no one has ever spoke specifically on the topic.

I'm studying to be a registered dietitian, and am sort of losing heart- I just don't know that I can wade through so much "drink milk for strong bones" to finally make it to my own online consulting set up for veg'ns.

Any advice or info would be appreciated, such is what subfield you work in, how you've dealt with all the propaganda, etc. I may have to choose a new career, even though you guys have made it out there...

Ariann
10-14-2008, 10:59 PM
I don't have any helpful advice, but I just wanted to say I think it's awesome that we have VRF members studying to be dieticians or working already as dieticians. Even as a person who's never visited one, the messages put out by the "experts" are so disheartening and disappointing, I'm excited that there are more and more voices out there speaking for a whole foods plant diet instead of "drink milk to lose weight" and "100 calorie cookie packs make perfect snacks."

chikara_no_tori
10-15-2008, 05:12 AM
lamb, i have absolutely nothing worthy to add to what Ariann except i love the title of this thread.

anya the vegan
10-15-2008, 08:58 AM
lamb...it is beyond frustrating to be a vegan and be a dietitian. being a dietitian was not my ultimate goal while in undergrad. i was accepted into a public health graduate program where i planned on pursuing health policy and medical/nutritional anthropology...but due to finances and an ill family member, i dropped out the summer before grad school.

disenchanted with everything, i moved to colorado for awhile and went to a culinary school that specializes in veg*n cooking. i then realised i didn't want to be a personal chef for uppity twats in boulder, so i then opted to complete the internship to become a registered dietitian because unfortunately a BS in nutrition by itself does not get you very far. i hated most of the internship because everything was so wetsern medicine based, and I am much more into wellness/prevention. Not to mention the effing "food service" rotation which I basically refused to complete because I did not see the benefit of learning how to prepare 7356936 pounds of chicken for the hospital patients.

after completing my internship, i worked with a private practice RD for awhile, which was alright because i did see veg*ns on occassion. that job fizzled, and now i work in a clinic treating patients with end-stage renal disease. since this is not in the "members only" forum, i will just say that it is not my dream job by any means. it pays the bills :umm:

i'm not a member of the American Dietetic Association. they are a laughing stock in my opinion. their journal is nothing more than ad space for the beef, egg, milk, etc etc industries.

luckily, i have been able to put my credentials to good use by lecturing for Mercy For Animals and writing their vegan nutrition column in their mag, Compassionate Living. my lectures are actually packed with people, so that is refreshing to see that people are at least interested in vegan nutrition. i too will likely venture to the on-line consulting biz...

if i did it all again, i would have likely chosen a different career, but i am here now, so i have to make the most of it...at least until i win the lotto and can start a farm animal sanctuary ;)

eversosweet1013
10-15-2008, 11:07 AM
i always said if i didn't follow through with the psychology/criminal justice route, i'd have gone for nutrition. my dad reminded me how it would be difficult for me as a vegan to accept that a lot of the people i'd see would be meat-eaters and that i'd have to be open-minded... i have no useful advice for you, but i think it's great that you want to be a dietitian. you can give people a subtle nudge to a healthy life style that just so happens to be a vegan alternative.

because my friends and family were so concerned about MY health when i went vegan, to ease their nerves, i went to see a nutritionist. i was excited when she told me she, too, was vegan, then disappointed when she said "but i take fish oil pills and occasionally eat tuna." :sick: anyway, she didn't have much to tell me that i didn't already know because i did soooo much research to make sure i was doing things right. lamb i have no doubt you will be much more helpful than the person i went to see was!

on a side note, months ago, i had given my dad a copy of the ravediet.com video that initially turned me vegan in exchange for michael moore's "sicko". my dad would start to watch it but get bored and wander off. then out of nowhere, months later, he calls me and says "i just watched that video! WOW!" and proceeded to have a 45 minute long conversation with me about veganism and how he understands me now, and he's no longer concerned with my nutrition, and more concerned about his! it was a happy day for me! he hasn't changed his diet *yet* but i'm hoping with a little more encouragement he'll change his eating habits. i always told him those cholesterol-lowering pills were stupid and pointless... now he believes me! :)

gladcow
10-15-2008, 11:08 AM
I'm considering going to college and studying dietetics. I currently work in nutrition, as a researcher for a software company. If I were to go to school, I could possibly do my internship at my job (we've had interns regularly before), which is a major bonus. I'm not really sure what I would do with my degree outside of my current job, because I have no plans to leave. I just have a big interest in nutrition and want to know more and possibly move up in my job.

lullured
10-15-2008, 11:49 AM
I'm considering studying dietetics or nutrition as well. Actually, I'm more than considering, since the school has already accepted me and I'm starting next year. I just still have my doubts; I don't know how well I'll be able to handle all the issues around omnivores and meat and I don't know what to do.

If I don't start I don't know what else to do; physically I can't stay forever in my current job, and I don't think I'm strong enough mentally to finish a masters degree, so nutrition was sort of a compromise.

downwithapathy
10-15-2008, 12:00 PM
I've considered schooling in dietics and may go back for it (or something) yet. For now, I chose a slightly shorter path to financial independence. I'm studying medical transcription. I may look into more university schooling again in the future, but that comes post-financial independence (hopefully).

If anyone has questions about MT, by the way, feel free to get in touch. There's lots of scamming involving the MT industry (to take advantage of people who want to work from home). The fact is, the national companies pretty much hire from two schools. Any other school and you're probably wasting your time and money. :( I did lots of research into my school choice and believe strongly that the one I chose is the best option. Now I just have to make myself do the work. It's definitely not much of a shortcut to a career. For most, it's over a year of hard work. I'm only a lesson in.

bluedawg
10-15-2008, 12:36 PM
luckily, i have been able to put my credentials to good use by lecturing for Mercy For Animals and writing their vegan nutrition column in their mag, Compassionate Living.

hee, i keep meaning to tell you this story and i keep forgetting. i was just reading CL last week, and i saw your two-page spread in there, and i was skimming through it a bit, and then i looked at the picture. i started looking at your tattoo and suddenly felt like it looked familiar, and then i busted out HEY WAIT A MINUTE THAT'S ANYA! :silly:

anya the vegan
10-15-2008, 02:45 PM
...then i busted out HEY WAIT A MINUTE THAT'S ANYA! :silly:

Hahaha. Yep, c'est moi! :p

lamb
10-15-2008, 09:27 PM
thank you all :) It's so nice to have so much input, I was feeling pretty alone...


i hated most of the internship because everything was so wetsern medicine based, and I am much more into wellness/prevention. Not to mention the effing "food service" rotation which I basically refused to complete because I did not see the benefit of learning how to prepare 7356936 pounds of chicken for the hospital patients.

...

i'm not a member of the American Dietetic Association. they are a laughing stock in my opinion. their journal is nothing more than ad space for the beef, egg, milk, etc etc industries.

...

luckily, i have been able to put my credentials to good use by lecturing for Mercy For Animals and writing their vegan nutrition column in their mag, Compassionate Living.

thanks for so much info Anya, I was actually thinking of you when I made the thread :) I totally aree with the points you made, which is why I think I just decided officially to drop my nooch classes and wash my hands of it. I just feel like I can't wade through all the crap and politics.

(and it's so cool that you get to put your smarts to a good use!)

My next move is either flying planes or doing something with political science. Or international relations something.

I'm rather excited to go drop my "food selection and preparation lab," it's been sucking the life out of me with all the meat and dairy preparation and brainless "let's dismember this raw chicken carcass" group members.

eversosweet good on ya about your dad! I know small steps like that really feel amazing when they're accomplished.

and gladcow it sounds like you're in the perfect situation to do some nutrition training, it would be a really great match in your situation since you already have a great position to delve into

lullured, are you starting a four year program or starting the 2 year pre-professional dietetics program? Either way, good luck! I'm sure it would be a great match for some of you vrfers that have more patience to wade through the omni crap, I'm just believing more and more that that end of the fight isn't for me



Thank you everyone :kiss:

VegeTexan
10-15-2008, 09:34 PM
I'm not a Registered Dietitian, but I play one on the radio.

Seriously, I give out a lot of dietary advice and I wish I had a degree to give me more credibility. I really have thought about doing an online degree in nutrition.

But I really don't know where life will take me next.

Perhaps I will post a poll on VR, "what should VT do next." Maybe it could be a poll.
Marrying a millionaire would be high.

Learning as much about nutrition as we can is so very important for all of us who advocate a vegan diet. Read. Learn.

mamaquilla
10-15-2008, 09:44 PM
Lamb, hang in there, we need more vegan nutritionists!
:happy:

lullured
10-16-2008, 01:01 AM
lamb it will either be a 3 year program in general nutrition or a 4 year program i dietetics. The classes will be the same for all of us the first year, and then we'll have to make a choice.

And for all the patience that I would need (and don't think I have) well, I'm hoping that I'll get to work with refugees, mentally handicapped or something. I have been doing a lot of voluntary work with refugees and immigrants before, and I'm hoping go get back in that field.

anya the vegan
10-16-2008, 06:10 AM
lamb, i wish you the best in whatever career path you choose. ;)

i didn't want my earlier post to sound so "debbie downer", but anytime you are in a job where you will likely have to bite your tongue and act like nothing is wrong with eating animal products, it wears you down - at least it does me. the majority of full-time jobs out there are not vegan-based - most are in hospitals, nursing homes, etc. In this economy, people aren't wanting to pay to see a private practice dietitian out-of-pocket and most insurance companies don't cover dietitians unless the patient is diabetic or with kidney disease. this is the reason why so many hospitals and other institutions view dietitians/nutrition departments as an "expense" and don't invest in creating better programs for wellness/prevention, where dietitians could be of great use. until this country's health system starts focusing on prevention instead of treatment of the illness, our chance to ever really move forward and make a difference is going to be a hard battle.

lamb
10-16-2008, 07:42 AM
lamb, i wish you the best in whatever career path you choose. ;)

Thank you :) And you weren't a weren't a downer, more like an Honest Eddie. It's how I felt about everything anyway, I just wanted to know if I was missing a big, obvious "hey it's GREAT out here in the real world of dietetics!" Somehow my heart knew it wasn't true.


anytime you are in a job where you will likely have to bite your tongue and act like nothing is wrong with eating animal products, it wears you down

An emphatic +1


so many hospitals and other institutions view dietitians/nutrition departments as an "expense" and don't invest in creating better programs for wellness/prevention, where dietitians could be of great use.

a really good point, I'm actually reminded of this all the time. Online private practice is the big new thing, but I can't help but question a lack of interest, as I don't think dietitians are highly valued by much of the public (that could really benefit from their services)


I have been doing a lot of voluntary work with refugees and immigrants before, and I'm hoping go get back in that field.

That sounds awesome!!!!!! Any specific type of refuges? Do you think that maybe it would be easier-going or more rewarding to work with them dietetically because they're not engrained in the Western "fried chicken and cheese" doctrine?


A sidenote, I felt almost immediately that I didn't fit in with the dietetic program a year ago when I first met my classmates- all extremely tiny, beautiful, and perfectly polite, extremely christian girls. Not that I have anything against religion, but you get the demographic I'm trying to describe. Nevertheless I pushed on believing this was what I really wanted, but I'm starting to feel like I could help veganism on a different front that would be more engaging and rewarding for me.

lullured
10-16-2008, 10:19 AM
That sounds awesome!!!!!! Any specific type of refuges? Do you think that maybe it would be easier-going or more rewarding to work with them dietetically because they're not engrained in the Western "fried chicken and cheese" doctrine?

No, not really any specific type; we helped everyone that came to see us, but mostly adults, since there are other places for kids at different ages around town.

Part of the reason that I want to work with them is that it is harder to blame an illiterate or a torture victim for eating meat, since they might not have the resources to act in another way.
The other part of it is that several of them comes from cultures, where meat isn't something you eat every day and I'm hoping that I can use that to make them realize that you don't need meat at every meal.