In today’s society, there is a lot of competing information available to the public on the subject of nutrition. Fad diets and trends compete heavily with the latest in cutting-edge nutritional information, trying to gain the attention of an increasingly health-conscious population. As a nutritionist, you’re better off if you can secure membership in a reputable professional association. This boosts perception of your authority, as well as providing you with direct access to the latest news and information coming out of current and ongoing research.

Here is a list of five of the best professional organizations in existence for nutritionists, as well as others looking to enter into closely related fields.

1. National Association for Nutrition Professionals

The National Association for Nutrition Professionals, or NANP, is America’s primary resource for holistic nutrition. It provides support to independent professionals, as well as to larger firms, and gives access to the latest in nutritional information. It offers its own certification programs, and maintains a number of resources for students, as well as for those who may be considering moving into the nutritionist career field.

2. American Nutrition Association

The American Nutrition Association has been around since 1972, and is one of the most reputable organizations in the country with regard to the maintenance of good health and nutrition. The ANS concerns itself with all aspects of proper eating, diet, and exercise, so that the benefits of maintaining good nutrition may be maximized through a healthy lifestyle. They are concerned with childhood nutrition, as well as with common deficiencies in adults. The ANS is particularly good for students, given its extensive database of student resources.

3. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics provides ample, well-organized resources categorized by age range and sex, both of which are pertinent to the maintenance of good nutrition. The AND is particularly concerned with safe and healthy eating practices, as they are applicable to everyday life; where other organizations might tell you “what you need,” the Academy will tell you where to find it, with specific resources for children, the elderly, women who are pregnant, and so on. As a nutritionist, this organization will provide you with invaluable information that can be passed directly on to your clientele.

4. American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition

The American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, or ASPEN, focuses upon good nutrition as an important part of patient care. In addition to being a large and well-funded organization, ASPEN is particularly well-reputed within the medical community. It offers expansive resources on promoting patient health through good nutrition, and on healthy lifestyles to help avoid common medical conditions, with ample guidelines and clinical practices for the benefit of its member professionals. There are also continuing education resources available, to help ensure that ASPEN’s members remain on the cutting edge of nutritional science.

5. American Council on Science and Health

The American Council on Science and Health is a popular, up-to-date foundation for the maintenance of good health and nutrition, which is noted for being on the cutting edge of the latest in ongoing nutritional research. The ACSH provides excellent resources relevant to the pursuit of careers within the nutritional field. It also provides access to student information, direct contact with its organizers in the event that there are any questions, and a popular newsletter concerning the ongoing direction of nutritional thinking in America today. Common nutrition-based conditions and illnesses are addressed; there is ample information here for any nutritionist or other professional to share with their client base.

Related Resource: 30 Most Affordable Online Master’s in Nutrition Degrees 2017

Conclusion

Only you know what you need, in terms of what information will work best for your particular client demographic. Between these five highly reputed organizations for nutritionists, at least one of them should be able to provide you with enough information and professional accreditation to make membership more than worth your while. For further information, visit the United States Department of Agriculture‘s online listing of professional associations.