Lifestyle-related chronic diseases now account for 70% of all U.S. deaths and 75% of U.S. health care expenditures. Nutritional therapy is widely accepted as a low-risk, low cost, highly effective intervention for the prevention, risk reduction, and treatment of obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease, and certain cancers. Although 94% of physicians believe nutrition counseling should be a standard component of primary care, only 14% feel qualified to provide it. The MS in Medical Nutrition will target medical students, residents, and fellows; physician assistant students; and other students in health professions.
More than 50% of applicants to medical schools and physician assistant programs are not admitted on their first attempt (and, for many, their second or third attempts) thus face at least one gap year. Additionally, many post-baccalaureate students purposefully plan a gap year experience in order to improve their competitiveness prior to seeking admission to a professional school. This program will target pre-professional students in their gap years (e.g., medical students, physician assistant students, dental students, or physical therapy students) as well as others (including medical residents and fellows) seeking to strengthen their knowledge and skills related to human nutrition relative to disease prevention and treatment. This degree represents a viable gap year experience to improve the competitiveness of applicants to a range of professional schools.
The core nutrition competencies will encompass nutrition basics; nutrition across the lifespan; nutrition related to the cardiovascular, metabolic/endocrine, gastrointestinal, and immunology systems; and emerging topics including the microbiome, nutrigenomics, nutritional and botanical supplements, and personalized medicine.
Students completing the MS in Medical Nutrition program will be proficient in basic nutritional sciences; have the skills to evaluate a patient’s diet and current nutritional status based on the Dietary Guidelines; understand how to integrate nutritional assessment information into an individualized nutritional management plan for optimal health and risk factor reduction; and be able to evaluate research evidence for most accurate, current general and disease-specific nutritional information and recommendations.
Developing the health workforce of the future:
The Nutrition Program is committed to rigorous, high caliber education for students in areas of health. This program is dedicated to designing research with the intent to promote a healthy lifestyle and reduce the risk of chronic diseases.
- In the fall 2016, the College of Health Solutions had 247 Barrett Honors scholars, 146 faculty, 5,813 students and 9 million in research expenditures.
- ASU is #1 in the nation for innovation
- A leader in undergraduate education
- 100% pass rate on the Registration Examination for Dietitians over the past 10 years (national average was 86%)
- The Nutrition Program at ASU houses the largest undergraduate dietetics program in the U.S.