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Welcome to Clinical Nutrition

It is our hope that our nutrition site will help answer all your questions about nutrition, provide definitions, explain Food Services at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and provide helpful and informative links to other organizations.

Find out about our Clinical Nutrition Resource Handbook.

» What is the difference between a Registered Dietitian and a Nutritionist?

The titles “Registered Dietitian”, “Professional Dietitian”, and “Dietitian” are all protected by law. These titles can only be used by those who have met national standards.

The letters RD, RDN, P.Dt., Dt. P. and R. Dt. are the legal designations for qualified Registered Dietitians in Canada. In Ontario, the legal designation for Dietitians is RD.

Dietitians are uniquely trained to advise you on food, diet and nutrition. All Dietitians have a Bachelor’s degree specializing in food and nutrition, and have completed an accredited internship or a graduate degree.

Law does not protect the term “Nutritionist” in all provinces.  People with different levels of training and knowledge can call themselves a “Nutritionist”. While some Registered Dietitians will refer to themselves as “Nutritionists”, to be sure you are speaking to an expert, look for the letters RD.

In every province, practicing Dietitians are regulated, (ie. belong to a professional college) so you can be sure that you are getting safe and ethical advice. The regulatory body in Ontario is the College of Dietitians of Ontario

Registered Dietitians work in hospitals, community health centres, health care facilities, home care and a variety of other settings. In all settings, Dietitians train professionals and conduct research.

Below are some of the duties Registered Dietitians perform in different settings: 

In the hospital

Clinical Dietitians provide medical nutrition therapy for a variety of inpatient and outpatient medical conditions.

In the community

Public Health and Community Health Dietitians offer nutrition programs and healthy eating resources. 

In food service

Dietitians manage food preparation and distribution.

In private practice

Dietitians consult to individuals and groups, workplace, institutions and the media.

In industry and businesses

Dietitians participate in product development, marketing and consumer education.

The above was adapted from Dietitians of Canada 10/00

» What is a Nutrition Technician?

In the Hospital, Nutrition Technicians work in consultation with the Dietitian in order to provide optimal nutrition care to patients. The Nutrition Technician is involved with the day-to-day operation of the food and nutrition/dietary department. They act as a link between Dietitians and foodservice personnel.  At Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre Nutrition Technicians also work with Dietitians to provide nutritional care to patients at low or moderate nutrition risk. Our Nutrition Technicians have an education in nutrition science and/or nutrition management.


Adapted from: The Canadian Society of Nutrition Management

Nutrition & food blog

Location and contact

Clinical Nutrition

Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre
2075 Bayview Avenue,
E-wing, ground floor,
room EG 49  (off EG 38)
Toronto, ON  M4N 3M5

Current Patients *

Phone: 416-480-4222   
Fax: 416-480-6743

* Please note that due to regulations, reception may not be able to provide information directly, but can hopefully put post-discharge patients in touch with the Registered Dietitian that provided care.

SUNDEC appointments

Phone: 416-480-4805

Patient Food Services

Phone: 416-480-6100 ext. 2390