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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county & community efforts.
Why Consult A Licensee
Many people know about the impact that licensed dietitian/nutritionists (LDNs) and licensed nutrition counselors (LNCs) can have on overall health by improving eating habits and promoting weight loss and healthy weight. They can also provide medical nutrition therapy, which has been shown to decrease the length of hospital stays and the chance of low birth weight infants, as well as reduce complications from chronic diseases and enhance performance in sports.
Even though the advantages of seeking nutritional advice from a licensed professional are apparent, the risks of not using a licensed professional may not be as apparent.
A few reasons you may consult a licensed dietitian/nutritionist or nutrition counselor:
- Chronic disease management and prevention-If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, heart disease or other chronic disease, or are at risk of developing these diseases an LDN or LNC can provide medical nutrition therapy and help you develop an effective eating plan that will not compromise taste or nutrition.
- An LDN or LNC works with the treating physician when implementing a dietary plan for a condition under which the patient is under a physician's care.
- Weight loss or gain - An LDN or LNC can offer suggestions on caloric intake and nutritional choices for healthy weight loss or gain.
- Digestive problems - Working with your physician, an LDN or LNC can help you adjust your eating habits in a way that will cause the least aggravation to your condition.
- Nutritional advice when preparing for pregnancy, during pregnancy and while breastfeeding - An LDN or LNC can help make sure you receive all necessary nutrients to yield a healthy pregnancy and baby.
- Childhood obesity - An LDN or LNC can assist with diet assessments and help develop a diet plan that is practical for your child.
- Eating Disorders - An LDN or LNC can assist with eating disorders as well as weight issues.
- Gastric Bypass Surgery - An LDN or LNC can help develop a dietary plan that works for you.
- Seniors - An LDN or LNC can help with food or drug interaction, hydration, hypertension, and other nutritional needs that can change with age.
- Education - An LDN or LNC can provide education for you and your family regarding nutrition, healthy cooking and forming healthy habits.
- Sports Nutrition -An LDN or LNC can help you improve your performance in sports by setting nutritional goals that will help you achieve desired results.
Risks of not using a licensed nutrition professional include:
Qualifications and experience are unknown because there are no educational or training requirements. You may purchase unnecessary or ineffective supplements or products.
- You could harm your health by following fad or unproven diet regimens that are not based on nutrition science.
- Serious damage can occur to your health if the wrong type of nutrition therapy is prescribed for certain types of illnesses.
No consultation or communication with your physician.
Nutrition consultations and or services are covered by some insurance providers. Please contact your insurance provider and ask if they cover nutritional counseling or services. Even without insurance coverage, the cost of a visit with a LDN or LNC is lower than the cost of treating a chronic condition.
The State of Florida no longer issues new licenses for Nutrition Counselor. Those persons licensed in this profession were licensed under a grandfather clause which closed in 1997. There is no longer an avenue to become licensed in the State of Florida as a Nutrition Counselor. The license must be kept active or on a paid inactive status as any Nutrition Counselor license which becomes null and void is ineligible for renewal or submission of a new application.