Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving

The dark side of dietetics

8 Comments

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Is there any other profession in which there is as much infighting as there is in dietetics? Seriously though. Is there?

All too often I see RDs attacking each other, undermining each other, subtweeting the heck out of each other. Maybe it’s that social media has brought our differences to the fore. Maybe it’s that it’s far too easy to belittle someone when you just have to tap out a short message on social media and it’s there for all the world to see. But why is there what seems to me to be an excessive amount of vitriol amongst members of my profession?

Perhaps it’s that there aren’t enough jobs to go around so it feels like everyone’s stepping on everyone else’s toes. The pie isn’t big enough for everyone to get a reasonably sized piece (yes, I had to use a food metaphor. It’s my duty as a dietitian).

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that we all have to agree on everything. There are many approaches to various aspects of dietetics and with such an evolving field there’s bound to be differences of opinion. Honestly, I’ve been critical of other RDs myself although I try not to make it personal. I find it hard to resist calling out examples of what I believe to be a lack of ethics or subpar advice.

But seeing dietitians attack other dietitians for differing opinions is not cool. There’s no need to insult someone because you don’t agree. Just because you are so confident in your dogma, or perhaps because you’re so insecure about your promotion of specific products that doesn’t make those who see things differently wrong or bad dietitians. There’s no need to publicly disparage them. It does a disservice to our entire profession. And god knows with everyone else and their dog thinking that they’re qualified to spout nutrition advice we don’t need those within our profession taking each other down. The pie isn’t going to get any bigger. Rather than squabbling over one piece while the self-styled nutritionists run away with the pan we need to figure out a better way to share amongst ourselves.

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Author: Diana

I'm a registered dietitian from Nova Scotia, living and working in Ontario, Canada. My goal is to help people relearn how to have a healthy relationship with food.

8 thoughts on “The dark side of dietetics

  1. could be worse. could be politicians and the fights broadcast in the national media :-)

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  2. As a “patient” this is why I’m not sure about who to believe. It would be great to see a post about how to find a good dietician.

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  3. “If you have nothing nice to say (or say it tactfully) then say nothing at all.” I am more about the personal approach. Sometimes we need more information from the person/group. We all can learn from each other without attacking each other. Who would think that I would be okay with nut cheese – yummy!

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  4. You’re right! The pie isn’t getting any bigger and I do think it hurts the public trust if we are cutting each other down.

    Liked by 1 person

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