Becoming a Licensed or Non-Licensed Nutritionist in Kansas

The Kansas Dietitians’ LicensingKansas Act specifies that you must be licensed in the state of Kansas to practice nutrition care or dietetics. This means that there is no such thing as a licensed nutritionist in Kansas, unless you are referring to a licensed dietitian nutritionist. Some exemptions do exist, however, to the Kansas Dietitians’ Licensing Act, allowing unlicensed nutritionists to perform some nutritional duties. We will delve into the ins and outs of this act and discuss what unlicensed nutritionists may legally do, versus what licensed nutritionists may legally do, in this article.

Can I Become a Licensed Nutritionist in Kansas?

As mentioned above, a licensed nutritionist is actually a licensed dietitian in Kansas. In order to become a registered, licensed dietitian in Kansas, you must follow the rules of the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) of the American Dietetic Association (ADA). Their rules coincide with Kansas law. You can find out details on becoming a licensed dietitian in Kansas here (Becoming a Registered Dietitian in Kansas)

The CDR and Kansas law both mandate that you must have at least a bachelor’s degree from an approved program, majoring in food and nutrition, food service management, human nutrition, or dietetics. Additionally, you must complete 1000 hours of supervised dietetic practice experience, as well as pass the CDR’s registration examination, before becoming eligible for licensure as a dietitian in Kansas. 

Finally, to become a licensed dietitian nutritionist in Kansas, you must file the Application for Kansas Dietitian License and pay the specified licensure fee (pro-rated, varying depending upon what month you are applying. Check here for your amount owed.  If you have questions about the licensure process, contact Wendy Jacobs of Health Occupations Credentialing at

Can a Nutritionist Work Without a License in Kansas?

If the idea of many years of schooling, examinations and bureaucratic red tape involved in becoming a licensed, registered dietitian in Kansas does not appeal to you, can you still practice as a nutritionist in the state? The answer is yes, as long as you don’t call yourself a nutritionist or dietitian. There are some exemptions to the Kansas Dietitians’ Act allowing non-licensed persons to provide certain nutritional services. 

Here is what persons without a license may legally do in Kansas, as long as they do not call themselves a nutritionist or dietitian:

  • Licensed medical facility/adult care home – If you work in one of these institutions,under the direction of a licensed dietitian, you need no license to provide nutritional services. 
  • Weight control services – If you work under the direction of another licensed healthcare professional, you may provide weight control services.
  • Food, food materials, dietary supplements – You may provide nutrition information as to the use of these product, provided that you don’t tell people you are licensed. If you market, sell or distribute these products, you may also provide information to customers about them. 
  • You have a degree in home economics – If you have a degree in home economics, and your nutrition-related activities fall within the scope of your education and training, you need no license.
  • Religious practices and observances – If you are working under religious practices and observances, you may care for the sick and their nutritional needs without a license.
  • Dietetic technician or assistant – As one of these professionals, you do not need a license to practice nutrition and dietetics, as long as you don’t call yourself a nutritionist or dietitian.
  • Anyone licensed to practice healing arts (including doctors, dentists, nurses, psychologists, physical therapists, and pharmacists)- If you are one of these professionals, you do not need a license to practice nutrition and dietetics.
  • Represent a trade association on dietetic activities – If you work for a dietetic/nutrition related trade association, you do not need a dietetic license.
  • Work for state, federal government, military, public health, veterans’ administration – if you work for any of these entities, you do not need a dietetic license.
  • Teaching a clinical demonstration in an educational, clinical or health care institution – you do not need a dietetic license to do this.
  • You are an educator employed by a state institution, elementary/secondary school, other educational institution, licensed institution or nonprofit organization – If this is you, you do not need a license to provide information and services related to nonmedical nutrition.

A person without a dietetic license in Kansas may not:

  • Call themselves a nutritionist or dietitian
  • Advertise that you assess the nutritional needs of groups and individuals, provide nutrition counseling, provide goal setting, provide nutritional advice
  • Advertise that you practice dietetics; that is, the integration and application of principles from the sciences of nutrition, food, biochemistry, physiology, behavioral and social sciences, and management, to achieve and maintain others’ health

What Education Should I Pursue to Become a Non-Licensed Nutritionist in Kansas?

You need not pursue any specific course or duration of education if you wish to become an unlicensed nutritionist in Kansas, as no rules regulate the profession. It is good to get education in a nutrition-related field, however. Examples of degrees and certificates available in Kansas that are appropriate for non-licensed nutritionists include:

  • Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Health – Kansas State University, Manhattan
  • Undergraduate Certificate in Nutrition – University of Kansas, Edwards (online)
  • Associate in Science in Pre-Nutrition – Kansas City Kansas Community College
  • Bachelor of Science in Sports Nutrition – Kansas State University, Manhattan

Are Jobs Available for Non-Licensed Nutritionists in Kansas?

There are plenty of jobs for non-licensed nutritionists in Kansas, if you know how to search. Make sure to avoid any jobs featuring the words “dietitian,” “license,” or “nutritionist.” The following jobs were available as of August 2022:

  • Director of Nutrition, OFM, Inc.–Peabody, KS
    • Salary: $36,000 to $40,000/year
    • Need experience in hospitality, supervising and leadership
  • SNAP-Ed Nutrition Educator, K-State Research and Extension – Hays, KS
  • Dietary Director/Manager, Westview of Derby Property, LLC – Derby, KS
    • Salary: $48,200 to $61,000/year
    • Need one year of supervisory experience in long term care setting
  • EFNEP Nutrition Assistant, Shawnee County, Kansas State University – Manhattan, KS
    • Salary: $13.50 to $15.50/hour
    • Need education in nutrition
  • Dietary Technician, Kiowa District Hospital – Kiowa, KS
    • Salary: $23,400 to $29,600/year
    • Need supervisory experience