Food Science vs Nutrition: Career ROI

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Updated: March 25, 2024, Reading time: 7 minutes

Do you like food? Does the food-making process interest you? Are you curious about how food impacts human health? Perhaps a job involving Food Science and Nutrition could be right up your alley!

Food Science is a multidisciplinary study and practice that involves nutrition. Because it is science-oriented, it applies the principles of Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Microbiology and Physics to food groups, the food system, and the process by which food is stored in and utilized by the body.

Meanwhile, Nutrition branch of Food Science that focuses on the nutrients that help people survive. Ultimately, this discipline is about how to maintain healthy eating habits. It emphasizes that people can manage their health issues by watching what they eat!

Food Science vs Nutrition - fact

How Can You Get Started in Food Science?

Food Science highlights food safety, food development, food preservation, and food processing. Particular methods like drying, farming, dehydrating, freezing, pasteurizing, and canning are widely discussed.

It also concerns the modern processes of flavor chemistry, food packaging, and genetically engineered food products.

Essentially, food scientists are expected to be well-trained in the following:

Essential Skills in Food Science 

Education Required in Food Science Careers

Ideally, a Bachelor’s in Food Science is the best option if you plan on becoming a food scientist. The most common concentration areas in Food Science are:

Food manufacturing and packaging industries as well as government agencies often partner with academic institutions to offer internships in Food Science programs. 

Opportunities for Advancement in Food Science 

Because of the competitive landscape in the Food Science field, it’s crucial to find strategies and resources to give you an edge in the industry. To elevate your practice and focus even more on research, earn a Master’s in Food Science degree.

If you plan to teach at the university or college level, you need a doctoral degree, such as a Ph.D. in Food Science and Human Nutrition specializing in Food Science.

Getting a Certified Food Science (CFT) Certification can help improve your visibility as a food science professional, network with industry professionals, and keep up with the latest Food Science developments.

To Be or Not To Be

Why a career in Food Science could be for you:

Why a career in Food Science isn’t for you:

How Can You Get Started in Food Science - Image

How Can You Get Started in Nutrition?

Nutrition investigates the overall process by which food is swallowed, digested, absorbed, utilized, metabolized, and excreted, as the interactions between these processes and components, and their general effect on human health and disease. 

If you are interested in Food Science but particularly want to advocate healthy eating, becoming a nutritionist or dietitian is your best career option! Nutritionists give expert advice on proper eating habits with the aim of promoting a healthy lifestyle.

Essential Skills in Nutrition 

Education Required in Nutrition Careers

Nutritionists must complete a Bachelor’s in Nutrition program or any other related field like Food Service System Management or Dietetics. BS in Health Care Administration Leadership, and BA in General Studies with a Health Care concentration are also popular academic tracks for becoming a nutritionist.

Gaining hands-on experience in the field helps you prepare for actual work. It is also an effective way of building your network in the industry. Ideally, you should complete around 500 to 1200 hours of internships in a nutrition-related environment.

Whether in communities, the private sector, or schools that need some expert advice on their campus food options, nutritionists are the go-to experts. As such, it pays to keep up with the many developments in the field. It is to your advantage to attend food nutrition classes to be on top of your game!

Opportunities for Advancement in Nutrition

Nutritionists are not required to hold advanced degrees. However, having one can lead you to researcher or educator positions in the industry. A Master’s in Nutrition program takes two years of full-time schooling, requiring students to complete courses in Medical Nutrition Therapy, Statistics, Public Policy, Molecular Biology, and Health-related subjects. 

You also need a master’s degree if you wish to become a Board-certified nutritionist. To further boost your credentials, you need to earn certifications granted by nationally-recognized organizations.

Depending on your type of practice and the state where you practice as a nutritionist, you may need to earn any of the following:

As food and nutrition experts, nutritionists with a Ph.D. in Nutrition or Dietetics usually engage in research to refine their understanding of the relationships between diet and health. They are equipped to create and implement public health policies designed to teach people to make the right decisions relating to nutrition.

To Be or Not To Be

Why a career in Nutrition could be for you:

Why a career in Nutrition isn’t for you:


Food is a basic and essential need. Therefore, any discipline that relates to food will always be considered an important field of study—and a constant demand for nutritionists and food scientists can always be expected!

If you’re interested in the actual food development and process or want to advocate healthy food consumption, you’ll find a fulfilling and well-paying job in either!

Additional Information: