What’s the difference between a Nutritionist and Dietitian?

nutritionist is a person whose job is to give advice on what you should eat to remain healthy. Nutritionist are qualified to provide information about food and healthy eating and often work in roles including public health, health improvement, health policy, education and research, etc.

People with different levels of training/certifications and knowledge can call themselves a “Nutritionist” since the term Nutritionist is not protected by law.

The title “Registered Dietitian” and “Dietitian” will be protected by law so that only qualified practitioners who have met the required education qualifications can use that title. A Dietitian is a health professional who has a Bachelor’s degree specialising in foods and nutrition, as well as a period of practical training in a hospital and a community setting. It takes at least four years of full-time study at a university to qualify as a Dietitian.  

In many cases Dietitians have a dual qualification which qualifies them to practice as Dietitians and Nutritionists. 

Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) are health professionals who are trained to provide counselling on nutrition and eating habits. An RDN can provide personalized dietary advice taking into consideration your health status, lifestyle, food likes and dislikes and when dealing with specific diseases, including Cancer, Celiac Disease, Diabetes, Heart disease, High blood pressure, High cholesterol, etc.

What is the difference between calories and kilocalories?

The “calorie” we refer to in food is actually kilocalorie. A kilocalorie is the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 kilogram of water one degree Celsius.  


1 Cal = 1 kcal

How many grams of protein should I consume per day?

You just need to multiple:

Weight (Kg) x 0.75-1 grams

For example, a 130-pound sedentary adult needs around 47 g of protein per day. Since the requirements increases with physical activity, adults who exercise regularly typically need about 70 g of protein daily

How do I get protein on a plant-based diet?

It was once thought that various plant foods had to be eaten together to get their full protein value; this practice was known as “protein complementing.” We now know that intentional combining is not necessary. As long as the diet contains a variety of grains, legumes, and vegetables throughout the day, protein needs are easily met. 

When I eat more than I need what happens to the extra calories? 

Consuming extra calories results in an accumulation of stored body fat and weight gain. This is true whether the excess calories come from protein, fat, carbohydrate, or alcohol.

Is it possible to burn fat and gain muscle at the same time?

From a thermodynamics = movement of energy perspective, it is impossible to build muscle and burn fat at the same time. You must be in energy surplus to gain muscle and in a deficit to lose fat.  

From a nutritional perspective, a caloric surplus isn’t necessarily needed to build muscle. This is because muscle and fat tissue are different functional compartments in the body. Your body can’t turn fat into muscle or vice versa. But, you can use your stored energy (fat) to fuel the muscle-building process when that fuel isn’t coming from additional food intake. That’s the part most people miss. 

Of course, it is important to point out that the use of those stored calories (fat) will be determined according to the intensity of the workout and overall performance, composition and hormone levels.

How many calories do I need to burn to lose a pound of weight? 

You need to burn off 3,500 calories more than you take in to lose 1 pound. This translates into a reduction of 500 calories per day to lose 1 pound in a week. 1-2 pounds per week is generally considered to be a safe rate of weight loss.

What’s the best time to exercise?

There’s no reliable evidence to suggest that calories are burned more efficiently at certain times of day. But the time of day can influence how you feel when exercising.

Choose a time of the day you can stick with, so that exercise becomes a part of your daily routine.

I advise you to try different times of the day. First you can try by working out in the morning for a few weeks, then at noon, and then early evening.

There’s always time for exercising. You don’t need to stay at the gym for three hours. You can do 20 minutes workouts with no issues. 

They key after all, is consistency and commitment with yourself.  

What do muscles use for energy during exercise? 

Most activities use a combination of fat and carbohydrate as energy sources. The intensity and duration of your workout directly affects the type of fuel your body uses. For short-term high-intensity activities like sprinting, athletes rely mostly on carbohydrate for energy. During low-intensity exercises like walking, the body uses more fat for energy.

How many calories are in 1 gram of protein, fats and carbohydrates?

Protein à 4 kcal per gram

 Carbohydrates à 4 kcal per gram

 Fat à 9 kcal per gram

 Alcoholic drinks à 7kcal per gram

Do Carbs make you fat?

“Carbs” are a hotly-debated topic, especially in the weight loss world, due in no small part to the popularity of low-carb diets which have left many people confused about carbohydrates and their importance for our health.

Carbohydrates should be the body’s main source of energy in a healthy balanced diet, providing about 4kcal per gram. Carbohydrates are sugar and starches found in foods like grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, milk, honey, etc.

They are broken down into glucose (sugar) before being absorbed into the bloodstream. From there, the glucose enters the body’s cells with the help of insulin. Glucose is used by your body for energy, fuelling all of your activities, whether going for a run or simply breathing. Unused glucose can be converted to glycogen found in the liver and muscles. But, if more glucose is consumed than can be stored as glycogen, it is converted to fat; and here’s where the importance of knowing the type, quantity and quality of carbohydrates will determine if there’s an excess of glucose or not.

For example, fibre, starchy and complex carbohydrates release sugar into the blood more slowly than sugary foods, which are normally made or combine with a high percentage of fat causing an excess amount of calories. Carbohydrate-rich foods help with permanent weight control because they contain less than half the calories of fat, which means that replacing fatty foods with complex carbohydrates automatically cuts calories.

In conclusion, the type of carbs you decide to consume will determine its purpose in your body. Those which are by themselves with no added fat will provide the same amount of calories a gram of protein does (4kcal per gram) while highly refined carbs (which still provide 4kcal per gram) combined with saturated and/or trans fats (9kcal per gram) will provide 12kcal per gram in total 

I've been eating healthy and exercising, but I'm still not losing. What am I doing wrong?

It is very important to really track your food and exercise calories, because nine times out of ten, “mysteries” about not losing weight are due to underestimating calories consumed or overestimating calories burned.

Are diet pills safe and will they help me lose weight?

Sometimes these pills claim amazing results that sound too good to be true.  Some diet pills work because they usually contain stimulants, such as high doses of caffeine, which speed up your metabolism, making it easier for you to lose weight. These can be addictive, and cause serious health problems such as heart problems, medication interactions, and even death. In addition, as soon as you stop taking them, you’ll likely put all the weight you lost back on.

Should I be on a Gluten free diet?

For high percentage of the population gluten is not an issue, but it can be a serious problem for the 1 percent of the population with celiac disease (gluten intolerance). Sometimes individuals may not have celiac disease but can have a sensitivity to gluten, which affects roughly 6 percent of total population and can be managed by a gluten-free diet.

Some of the most common symptoms are: diarrhea, unexpected weight loss, vomiting, anemia, abdominal pain and distention, fatigue, joint pain, foggy mind, and tingling of the extremities. If any of these symptoms persist, it’s best to seek medical attention.