Infuse Infuse 9 September 2019 - Page 4

From the Desk of Maree Ferguson Founder & Director, Dietitian Connection I’m calling for a name change! Dietitian – diet – die: it’s hardly the best name for a profession wanting to promote health and wellness. We’ve all been at a party when somebody asks what you do; before you proudly announce you’re a dietitian and brace yourself for the response that follows. When the word dietitian is mentioned most people immediately think “food police” and fear we’ll judge them on what they eat. Someone once said to me “they thought going to see a dietitian would feel like a punishment for something they’d done wrong”. A thought that saddened me – for if only people could see the typical dietitian, is seldom judgemental, highly empathetic and truly just wants to help. Aside from those dietitians working in the media, who mostly use “nutritionist”, or those in research using “doctor” or “scientist” somewhere in their title, the name dietitian continues to define the profession! © Dietitian Connection If we want to be the “go to” people for nutrition advice, I now believe more than ever, our name is holding us back. As a profession, we’ve come a long way in the last few decades from the concepts of dieting, and for some reason our name hasn’t kept up with our current thinking of non-dieting and HAES. I acknowledge, changing the name of an entire profession globally, will be no easy feat. For starters, what do we change our name to? I actually first raised this topic in June 2016 on the Dietitian Connection Facebook page and it created quite a stir, with many people thinking we shouldn’t change our name at all. Other suggestions included: 4 "Nu Infuse | September 2019