Prince Yalley Abban, RD
for something nutrishus
Prince and I connected on Instagram and we were both excited to get Ghana featured in the series. I too was working remotely on social media accounts as a communications dietitian, one area I wasn’t even aware of (or didn’t exist) after internship and undergrad. He is currently a new grad with a bright future ahead and ambitions to help the growing dietetics field understand the possibilities within the profession in West Africa.
Why did you become a RD?
My path to becoming a dietitian has been a chequered one. Back in high school I had the intention of becoming a dentist (I have always desired a profession that allowed the flexibility for private practice whiles I get to work with people).
I could not meet the requirement for medical school, however I proceeded to the University. After a year of studying Agricultural Science I decided to re-apply for a new programme.
I was stuck between Medical Laboratory Sciences and Dietetics. After countless google search binges and reading I finally settled on dietetics and the rest they say is history.
What area of dietetics do you work in?
Presently, I work in private practice in Accra and across the country. My work involves nutrition workshops and presentations with organisations and small groups, private clients, nutrition communication and consulting. All this I do with my growing private practice DietCare Ghana.
I also look forward to exploring my interest in research and academia.
How would you explain what you do?
For the most part of what I do I work remotely. All I need to work is a reliable internet connection, laptop or phone, a notebook and a pen. With nutrition communication and consultancy what I do involves managing social media accounts, creating content for social media and making presentations to organizations and small groups.
What are your typical daily or weekly tasks?
For typical days of the week, I create graphics as part of DietCare Ghana’s social media plan, replying to emails, posting content on social media, connecting with other dietitians for future projects and following up with clients and I do a bit of writing as well.
What has been your career path?
I have practiced as a dietitian just over a year but I have learnt a lot in this not so distant period.
My dietetic internship offered me the opportunity to know my strengths and weaknesses and how I could leverage that to make a necessary impact.
I look forward to contributing to research and sharing my expertise to the growth of dietetic practice in Ghana. There is currently an increase in the number of students who enroll to study dietetics in the various universities. With this there is the need to make resources readily available for students so that they can make informed decisions and also share opportunities for professional development.
At DietCare Ghana we seek to inspire a new generation of dietitians to explore the passport of opportunities that non-traditional dietetics jobs / practice offers.
What advanced education or special training do you have?
I am currently pursuing a Masters of Dietetics programme at the University of Ghana. I am a work in progress and always make time to learn something new considering the plethora of resources the internet has to offer and the dynamics of the science of nutrition.
In an ideal world, what does the industry look like 5 years from now?
The future of nutrition and dietetics is unimaginable. I look forward to a future where malnutrition would be considered in a multi sectorial approach as well as considering nutrition in a systems approach.
Five years from now, I see a future where dietitians would embrace technology, write more, whiles making basic nutrition easy to comprehend for all and sundry.
A future where stakeholders in the healthcare sector would recognize the competence of dietitians as pivotal in the multidisciplinary team in the clinical setting.
What misinformation about RDs would you like to clear up?
The notion that all dietitians work in the hospital or clinical setting. There are diverse areas of dietetics practice. There are dietitians who work with the media, research, some work with football teams etc. Considering the current situation in Ghana, most dietitians work in the clinical setting. But I believe this will evolve with time. As some dietitians test the waters with non-traditional dietetics job roles, others will be inspired to come on board.
What are the challenges you encounter as a RD?
One recurring challenge I have come across is the unwillingness of clients to pay good money for dietetics service offered. It is unfortunate many people are ready to dole out money to buy an online meal plan for the trending or latest nutrition craze but reluctant to pay for the services of a professional nutrition expert.
What are you passionate about in dietetics?
Evidence based dietetics and exploring the passport of opportunities the dietetics profession has to offer. I know every country has its own dynamics but I believe with time we can learn from what is working for others and localize it in our practice as nutrition professionals.
What tips would you give our readers?
The loudest voice on social media may not be the most credible source of nutrition information. Celebrities and social media influencers are not dietitians. If you need personalized nutrition advice consult a registered dietitian. Most of the information you get on the internet is for educational purposes only.
Social Media has become the mainstay of communication globally. Due to the nutrition information overload I believe it is about time we all embrace social media and harness the opportunities it presents. This would also serve as a great platform for dietitians to share credible food and nutrition information hence establishing our credibility as the nutrition experts.
More about Prince:
Facebook: DietCare Ghana
Linkedin: Prince Yalley Abban, RD