By Ranjan K Baruah
We eat food for getting energy and we also get engaged in different activities for which we need good food for good health. We have been studying about the importance of balanced diet since our school days. In simple we can say that nutrition is must for pour progress. Well, nutrition is the biochemical and physiological process by which an organism uses food to support its life. It includes ingestion, absorption, assimilation, biosynthesis, catabolism and excretion. In simple it is the process of taking in food and transferring it into energy and additional essential nutrients vital for our life. It plays a pivotal role in leading a healthy life.
In a country like India there is a paradox which tells us that there are people who can easily afford nutritious foods where as there are millions who still needs it. There are scopes of experts to work in the field of ensuring nutrition to children of this country in many parts like rural areas or people belonging to financially marginalized communities. We are talking about it because nutrition can be a career options for many in India and also in abroad as there are changes in lifestyles.
There are courses like nutrition and dietetics in many colleges and universities which can be pursued after completing senior secondary or graduation. There are graduations, post graduation, diploma courses available in the country and in abroad. Aspirants shall get a broad understanding of clinical nutrition, food science, sports nutrition, public health nutrition and its control on human health and well-being. A Nutrition professional offers supervision to people, families, and organizations on how to change food, lifestyle, etc., for healthy living.
Career opportunities in the field of nutrition includes – Certified Nutrition Specialist, Clinical Dietician, Dietetic Technicians, Holistic Nutritionist, Licensed Nutritionists, Nutrition Specialties, Registered Dieticians, Registered Nurses, Rehabilitation Counsellors, Sports Nutritionist, among others.
Students may also choose home science or community science as a subject of their studies if they want to be in the field of nutrition.
Nutritionist may work in different sector which includes government as well as private sector. They may also become self employed and start their own ventures. Some of the area where they may work includes Hospitals (Government and Private), Multinational Corporations, Research and Advocacy, Schools, Private Clinics, Nursing Homes, Community Health Programmes, Wellness Centers, Fitness Clubs, Health Product Companies, Diabetic Clinics, International Organisations like UNICEF, etc.
The Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition or POSHAN Abhiyaan or National Nutrition Mission, is Government of India’s flagship programme to improve nutritional outcomes for children, pregnant women and lactating mothers. Launched by the Prime Minister on the occasion of the International Women’s Day on 8 March, 2018 from Jhunjhunu in Rajasthan, the POSHAN (Prime Minister’s Overarching Scheme for Holistic Nutrition) Abhiyaan directs the attention of the country towards the problem of malnutrition and address it in a mission-mode. 16th March to 31st March is POSHAN fortnight and many activities are carried out to ensure proper nutrition. Programme like POSHAN Abhiyan reminds us the importance of nutrition and the scopes in the field of nutrition.
Apart from working in the community there are options in the metros too due to increase of lifestyle diseases. Aspirants with employability skills and qualification may work in both urban and rural areas when it comes to nutrition. As mentioned earlier there are also scopes to start new ventures or begin with startups related to nutrition.
(Ranjan K Baruah is a career mentor and skill trainer and can be reached at 8473943734 or [email protected])