Romina Barritta de Defranchi, RD
for something nutrishus
As the first Argentinian in the series, it seems fitting that Romina is passionate about international dietetics, networking and connecting with dietitians across the globe. As such, she sees the challenges that we share as dietitians and the need for us to support each other and strengthen our brand. She's also actively involved with the American Overseas Dietetic Association, of which I, a Canadian, am a member. Through this series I hope to help share our experiences worldwide, and as always, I'm glad Romina is on our team!
Why did you become a RD?
Because I love helping others and I love everything about food, so being a dietitian is the perfect combination of health, human and food sciences.
What area of dietetics do you work in?
Clinical Dietetics, Communications, Recipe Development.
How would you explain what you do?
I work in a 100 bed hospital as an inpatient and outpatient dietitian, involved mainly in nutrition support. My other passion is to write and share experiences in my blog GlobalDietitians.com. I’m also Professional Development Chair of the American Overseas Dietetic Association (AODA), the international affiliation of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
What are your ‘typical’ daily/weekly tasks?
I work in the hospital 6 hours M-F and I dedicate 8-10 hours/week to my other tasks (my website, AODA, recipe development, etc.).
What has been your career path?
I graduated as a dietitian in Argentina (Licenciada en Nutricion), where I also did a 3-year Nutrition Residency. Then, life took me to the U.S. where I have the wonderful opportunity to work as a Dietetic Technician Registered at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. I was immensely enriched -not only professionally but also personally- as I learned from the leading experts in the nutrition field with unique teamwork approach and values. It was there when I became interested in international dietetics and networking with dietetic professionals around the globe. I realized that despite our differences all dietitians want the same: to better position our profession with the ultimate goal to improve nutrition and health of the people we serve. Looking for international dietetics communities I came across the American Overseas Dietetic Association, the international affiliate of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, where I became Country Representative for Argentina.
What advanced education or special training do you have?
3-Year Residency in Nutrition. Expert in Nutrition Support (Certified by the Argentinean Association of Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition).
In an ideal world, what does the industry look like 5 years from now?
With rising food prices, environmental issues and a growing population, I think food companies will focus more on sustainable ways of feeding the world, decreasing food waste and providing food that is produced, processed, bought, sold and eaten in ways that provide social benefits and contribute to thriving local economies.
What would you like people to know about RDs?
We are the food and nutrition experts that can translate the science of nutrition into practical solutions for healthy living.
What are challenges you encounter as a RD?
Professional intrusion from other disciplines (like chefs, journalists, and personal trainers that provide nutrition counseling) is becoming an issue in Argentina and in many countries. That is a global challenge for us, and if we unite in this we can achieve a better image and positioning of our profession worldwide.
What is your favorite meal?
As an Italian daughter, I love pasta and my favorite dish is Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni, and why not with a glass of Argentinean Malbec.
What tip(s) would you give to our readers?
“Share our similarities, celebrate our differences” M. Scott Peck
I invite my colleagues to get together and share experiences worldwide to make our profession stronger. We can easily communicate with today’s tools and it’s a great idea to connect with local dietitians if you have the chance to travel to another country. Be always curious, share your passion, & love your food!
More about Romina:
Facebook: Global Dietitians
Linkedin: Romina Barritta de Defranchi