Date Approved


Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department or School

Health Sciences

Committee Member

Judith Brooks, PhD, RD, Chair

Committee Member

Anahita Mistry, PhD

Committee Member

Rubina Haque, PhD, RD


Background: Healthcare consumers have a plethora of resources of nutrition guidance available, yet many sources provide unreliable information. Healthcare professionals are expected to be the expert source of nutrition information and dietary guidance for their clients and patients.

Purpose: To determine the nutrition knowledge, behaviors, and beliefs of healthcare professionals to identify which, if any, professional group are experts in nutrition and which professionals are the best resource for nutrition information and guidance for healthcare consumers.

Research Design: A self-reported online survey gathered information on participants’ (n=201) BMI, knowledge of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, dietary intake, and beliefs about healthcare professionals’ knowledge of nutrition and providing dietary guidance.

Conclusions: All groups demonstrated knowledge of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, though RDs displayed the greatest knowledge of the guidelines and most congruence between guideline recommendations and reported dietary intake, and were identified as experts in nutrition by all professional groups surveyed.