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Rehabilitation and the Registered Dietitian

Registered Dietitian

Registered dietitians, or nutritionists, assess and provide for the nutritional needs of the patient with a disability. They assist the physician and provide a treatment plan which may include the following:

  • ideal body weight, caloric, and dietary needs
  • foods that help facilitate swallowing
  • special diets
  • dietary modifications that need to be made as a result of the disability
  • tube feeding formulas and schedules for patients who are unable to swallow
  • patient and family education on nutrition topics related to diseases (i.e., diabetes)

Registered dietitians may practice in a variety of settings, including the following:

  • hospitals
  • inpatient rehabilitation centers
  • home health settings
  • private practice

Registered dietitians hold an undergraduate degree, and many have earned a Master's degree in dietetics or nutrition science, and may be certified by the American Dietetic Association.

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