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so you want to be a nutritionist…{day in the life of an RD, LD}

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{Today is a follow-up to my so you want to be a nutritionist… post – I have Kristina LaRue, RD, LD sharing what her day at work looks like. In a few weeks I have another guest post scheduled from a dietitian who works in a more traditional setting – enjoy!}

As a dietitian I wear many hats. I’ve enjoyed it that way since I first began my career. Mostly because I don’t like to get stagnant, however it can create a case of scatter-brained, so I’m always learning what that balance looks like for me.

Graduating from Auburn University with a degree in Nutrition/Dietetics, I did my internship at Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama. My internship was a distance program so it allowed me to shadow and learn from the dietitians that are in my local– Orlando, Florida. During college I had dreams of working with sports teams, eating disorders and writing.

I cannot thank my internship enough for the experience and doors it opened up for me. After getting my RD, I started a few jobs. Again I like to keep it interesting! I did project work at the hospital for a food service initiative, started consulting at the YMCA and teaching their diabetes prevention program, consulting with eating disorders and doing freelance writing.

After I finished the project at the hospital I transferred to another local hospital and worked as an outpatient dietitian working with underserved teens in the school system. We taught an afterschool camp for the kids that included Zumba, yoga, training for a 5K, and of course nutrition education and cooking demonstrations.

Currently my day looks very non-traditional, but I absolutely love it! I work for a big media RD, Tara Gidus, www.dietdiva.net, who is the RunDisney Nutritionist and Orlando Magic team dietitian.

We always have a new project going on, so my days never cease to look different. Sometimes I’m cooking at home, other days I’m at Disney, managing social media accounts, or on set preparing for a TV segment.

A big portion of my time is devoted to the University of Central Florida Athletics as I work as the sports dietitian. I’m co-authoring a cookbook, The Belly Fat Diet Cookbook for Dummies, so I spend many hours writing and creating recipes in the kitchen.

I continue to work with eating disorders and do consulting through my blog, www.loveandzest.com, recipe development, nutritional analysis, speaking, writing, and Skype/phone consultations.

A career in dietetics is what you make of it. You can truly pursue your dreams and create a niche for yourself if you desire. I love going to work every day, it’s a lot of fun!

A big Thank YOU to Emily for having me on her blog, A Nutritionist Eats is one that that I’ve been reading ever since I discovered the blogworld. I’m honored she asked me and happy to share my nutrition journey with you.

If you have any questions or want to send me a note please don’t hesitate to email me loveandzest@gmail.com.

{Thank you so much Kristina, your job sounds so incredibly interesting and exciting, I’m a little envious!  Stay in touch with Kristina here: facebook | twitter | linkedin | pinterest}

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  1. Jordan Rawlin

    Wow you really do alot Kristina what made you want to get in nutrition and dietitioning? And how do you have time for all that stuff haha?

    Jordan Rawlin (farmer teaching himself about nutrition 🙂

    • Kristina @ Love and Zest

      Hi Jordan! I’m learning how to balance my time better and better every day! My jobs have lent themselves to be a little flexible with scheduling so that is a blessing. I became interested in nutrition at a young age because there was disease (obesity and diabetes) in my extended family and I played competitive tennis which I needed to focus on my eating habits (not saying they were all good in high school, haha), I started out in college in physical therapy and quickly switched to nutrition after the first semester because that is what I found interesting and wanted to learn more about. I wasn’t aware of the different career paths at the time, but my interests were shaped while in school and so happy to be in the field now.

      • Joe

        Wow I laughed out loud–YES you’d better be a great time manager! That kind of balance is a REAL art, and, may I say, I am no artist… 😉

  2. Morgan

    Hi Kristina!

    I’m currently pursuing my Nutrition/Dietetics degree and got inspired from your post! I’d love to work for a media RD or do anything of that sort. It sounds really exciting. How did you get started doing that? I don’t even know where I’d start to look for such a job!


  3. Sammy

    I’ve always wanted to become a nutritionist. It’s fascinating to me because I love reading about health and focusing on my own… and I love the idea of helping others. However there are so many fantastic ones, and I think I like just letting them get the biz. 🙂

  4. ZacK

    Such a wonderful post! I am currently dieting so I can get to my weight that I use to be in high school! Thanks for the post Kristina!

  5. Khimmie

    Hi! I was looking for top nutrition blogs and I found this one on the top of a list.
    Looking through the posts, I learned I was in the perfect one!
    Sharing posts like this is awesome!

  6. Alison

    It sounds a really fascinating occupation – not just helping people who want to improve their lives through better diet and nutrition, but also gaining an insight into the deeper reasons why we eat the way we do.

    There’s a crisis in the dietary habits of our country today – and you’ll be making a very important contribution to the conversation, Kristina!