What is Nutritional Medicine?
Nutritional medicine is a holistic approach to health and wellness that supports the idea that the key to being healthy and happy lies in providing your body with the nutrients it needs to thrive.
While nutritional medicine is primarily focused on dietary factors –ranging from what you eat to how that food was grown and processed– it also considers a wide variety of environmental and lifestyle factors as well. For instance, nutritionists will often consider things like whether you drink or smoke, are exposed to chemicals, are dealing with high levels of stress and even the amount of exercise and sleep you’re getting.
Nutritional Medicine in Australia
The link between nutrition and health has received far greater attention in recent years, which has led to a massive increase in the number of Australians looking to make positive changes to their diet and lifestyle. As a result, nutritionists are now in higher demand than ever before, with approximately 6,000 professionals currently employed right across the country.
Nutritional medicine jobs typically involve working business hours in an office or clinic–type setting and can include working in private practice, public health, food technology, research and consultancies. Most jobs are found in New South Wales (24.9%), Victoria (22.5%) and Queensland (18.7%), with the average working week being 32.7 hours long. At present, the average salary is $68,832 per year for professionals in this industry.
Nutritional Medicine Courses
When you’re dealing with the inner workings of the human body, there’s a lot you need to know, and there isn’t a better way to get trained up than by investing in one of the many quality nutritional medicine courses on offer nation-wide.
If you’re looking for an introduction to nutritional medicine, consider studying a Certificate in Nutritional Medicines course, as they are designed to meet the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) and will, therefore, cover all of the most important basics. For example, you will get trained in the fundamentals of good nutrition, deepen your understanding of how the human body works, and get up to speed on the rules and regulations impacting nutrition and dietetics in Australia.
Investing in an Advanced Diploma of Nutritional Medicine provides a fantastic way to boost your knowledge even further. Here you’ll tackle topics such as how your body digests and metabolises food, the art of recognising healthy body systems, as well as the link between nutrition, exercise and weight management. These popular programs are a great stepping stone towards entry-level roles and provide a natural pathway to higher level learning as well, such as the widely-regarded Bachelor of Health Sciences.
While the field of nutrition isn’t regulated in Australia, to be accredited by industry bodies such as The Nutrition Society of Australia, you’ll typically need to complete a Bachelor of Health Science (Nutritional Medicine). These comprehensive programs look at everything from disease prevention, food quality and the use of nutritional supplements through to the social, environmental and ethical aspects of modern healthcare. You’ll also learn about physiology, anatomy, and biochemistry, as well as the food systems, frameworks, and policies currently in place in Australia.
Career Prospects in Nutritional Medicine
The long-term prospects in the field of nutritional medicine have never been brighter, especially in light of recent Australian Government data which predicts that there will be as many as 9,000 nutritionists working nation-wide by 2020.
Considering that knowledge of nutrition is also required in fields such as medicine, marketing education, fitness and weight loss; nutritional medicine graduates can expect to find plenty of opportunities for years to come through the easily transferable skills they receive.
Is a Career in Nutritional Medicine Right for You?
To enjoy a successful career in nutritional medicine, you’ll need to have a strong interest in science, be passionate about health and have a talent for dealing with people from diverse backgrounds. You will also need to have a positive, friendly and engaging personality and a non-judgemental attitude.
The following skills will certainly come in handy as well:
- Attention to detail
- Clear communication
- A tactful approach
- Creative problem solving
- High-level organisation
- Active listening
Find your program, sign up, and get ready for a career in one of the world’s most interesting, challenging, and rewarding sectors.