Many people wonder if a dietitian is the same thing as a nutritionist. You could say that all dietitians are nutritionists, however not all nutritionists are dietitians. Registered Dietitian is a legal credential with a nationally recognized exam and standards that must be met to take the exam and maintain registration. There are no specific requirements or recognized guidelines for credentials as a nutritionist. A dietitian’s education provides academic and practical emphasis on the science of both food and nutrition. This allows the dietitian to translate science-based messages that involve health needs, performance and wellness to more basic needs of what to eat, how to choose foods, and ways to enhance health through lifestyle choices.