Benefits of AND


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By: Nikki Nies

My time in the nutrition field has been short.  2 years to be exact.  But I’ve thrown myself into learning all I can about nutrition that one can learn in such a short period of time.  One of the best, but undervalued resources is the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND).  This is the largest nationwide organization for food and nutrition professionals with the philosophy

 “maintains that the only way to lose weight is through a healthy, well-balanced diet and exercise.”

When I started my undergraduate career at Montclair, I was told I had to join.  I noticed a lot of other people weren’t members, but I joined anyways.  As a student, there’s a discounted $50 yearly fee and I really wasn’t sure what I was paying for at first.  In the last two years, I’ve spent a lot of great time on the organization’s website, eatright.org and wouldn’t be where I am today without the great resources and information provided by AND.

At the end of the semester last year, the secretary of my school’s dietetic organization asked if I wanted to present the benefits of being a member of AND since she knew I was one.  As stated before, I’ve personally grown a lot throw the program.  I’ll share a few of my experiences as followed.

Benefits:

  • Be in the “know” to nutrition related celebrations, such has RD Day, National Nutrition Week, Dairy Month, etc. as well as access to information on such information
  • Ability to apply to dietetic internships—the path to becoming a Registered Dietitian (RD)
  • Educational opportunities—earn CPE credit through workshops and conferences
  • Career resource—anyone from students to seasoned health professionals
  • One can find a RD based on certain parameters—geographic area, area of interest, years of experience, languages spoken, types of mentoring, etc.
  • Networking with an active community with those sharing common interests
  • AND runs third party programs, such as Kids Eat Right—supporting White House’s efforts to provide nutrition education to children
  • Great discounts and insurance
  • Tremendous amount of volunteer experiences and leadership opportunities through DPG and MIG
  • Last year, I was one of the two Student Liaison’s for AND my school’s dietetic organization
  • Networking with an active community with those sharing common interests
  • Access to Evidence Based Library that has the most up to date research and information
  • Access to monthly publication Journal of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (ANDJ) that provides peer reviewed research, position papers and publications on the latest health news
  • Additional membership to Dietetic Practice Groups (DPG) and Member Interest Groups (MIG)
    • I am currently a member of Sports, Cardiovascular and Wellness Nutrition (SCAN), Chinese American in Dietetics and Nutrition (CADN) and Thirty and Under in Nutrition and Dietetics (TUND)
      • I have an interest in helping those with eating disorders and as a member of SCAN, I have access to a plethora of RD’s that work with those with eating disorders, an array of fact sheets and newsletters that provide current information
      • I helped pioneer CADN’s mentoring program, wrote for their newsletter by interviewing Zhang Lin Kong, MS,RD and expanding my network of health professionals in the Chinese American realm of dietetics
      • Tremendous amount of volunteer experiences and leadership opportunities through DPG and MIG

Also, if you’re interested in applying to dietetic internships, you must be an AND member. Even though the website can seem daunting, there are so many resources that you definitely won’t regret joining.

AND’s users are not limited to Registered Dietitians, but Dietetic Technicians, physicians, pharmacists, consultants, nurses, students, educators, food service managers, researchers and many more in the field of health care.  AND is not only for health professionals and students, but as a lot of information accessible to the public.  No matter who you are, check out eatright.org and get ready to learn some invaluable information!

I’ve enjoyed these last two years, becoming more acclimated to AND’s website daily.  I worked with RD’s from across the country, but with a shared interest of nutrition, I have gotten an array of perspectives.  As stated before, one doesn’t have to be in dietetics to be a member, but members reap the most benefits.  Check it out!

Source:eatright.org

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