College's Definition of Practicing Dietetics

College's Definition of
Practicing Dietetics 


Dietetic practice is paid or unpaid activities for which members use food & nutrition-specific knowledge, skills and judgment while engaging in:

  1. the assessment of nutrition related to health status and conditions for individuals and populations;
  2. the management and delivery of nutrition therapy to treat disease;
  3. the management of food services systems; building the capacity of individuals and populations to promote, maintain or restore health and prevent disease through nutrition and related means; and
  4. the management, education or leadership that contributes to the enhancement and quality of dietetic and health services.

For greater clarity, dietetic practice includes the following activities:

  • Assessing nutrition status in clinical settings to provide meal plans, nutrition guidance or advice and/or formulating therapeutic diets to manage and/or treat diseases or nutrition-related disorders.
  • Assessing, promoting, protecting and enhancing health and the prevention of nutrition-related diseases in populations using population health and health promotion approaches, as well as strategies focusing on the interactions among the determinants of health, food security and overall health.
  • Managing food and management services and developing food services processes in hospitals and other health care facilities, schools, universities, and businesses.
  • Conducting research, product development, product marketing, and consumer education to develop, promote and market food and nutritional products and pharmaceuticals related to nutrition disorders or nutritional health.
  • Assessing compliance of long-term care homes to meet the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care standards related to nutrition and hydration of residents.
  • Developing or advocating for food and nutrition policy.
  • Teaching nutrition, food chemistry or food service administration to students in dietetics, the food and hospitality industry and/or to other health care providers.
  • Planning and engaging in direct food & nutrition research.
  • Communicating food & nutrition information in any print, radio, television, video, Internet or multi-media format.
  • Directly managing, supervising or assuring quality of front-line employees who are engaged in any of the previously-mentioned dietetic practice circumstances.

Members are not considered to be practicing dietetics when engaged in the following activities:

  • Holding a position solely in non-dietetic management (e.g., Vice President or Administrator of a hospital or other organization).
  • Holding a position solely in the area of human resources (HR), information technology (IT), or risk management.
  • Engaging in sales or marketing of pharmaceuticals that are not related to nutrition.
  • Assessing facility processes to meet accreditation standards.