Nina German Hall, PhD, RDN, LD, had almost settled into a career in research. But in 2006, after earning a doctorate in nutrition sciences and completing two postdoctoral positions, Hall embarked on a journey to become a registered dietitian nutritionist.
“Because of the increased emphasis on the relationship between health and food, specifically on disease prevention through improved dietary habits, I saw a dire need for dietitians to address the growing epidemic of obesity, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease that plagues our society,” she says. “As a dietitian, I believe I’m improving quality of life in communities, one person at a time.”
Hall does it all, with five jobs that keep her busy and constantly learning. As an acute care clinical dietitian at Southern Regional Medical Center in Riverdale, Ga., Hall provides nutrition care for hospitalized patients and is a preceptor for dietetic interns. When she’s not at the medical center, Hall is a consultant to three businesses, providing expertise in the areas of family medicine, behavioral health and worksite wellness.
“I provide medical nutrition therapy and nutrition counseling for patients at South DeKalb Family Physician, LLC, in Decatur, Ga., where the emphasis is on disease prevention and management of chronic conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes,” she says.
With the DeKalb Community Service Board, Hall provides one-on-one consultations with clients who have developmental or mental health challenges as well as conditions such as elevated blood sugar, blood pressure or cholesterol, physical inactivity and nutrition-related side effects of medication. Hall also teaches nutrition classes that focus on introducing new foods, healthy recipes and physical activity.
“As the link between diet and mental health strengthens,” Hall says, “it is imperative that we consider the relationship between what we eat and our brain and overall health.”
Through CareATC, Inc., Hall provides nutrition counseling and medical nutrition therapy to people enrolled in a worksite wellness program. In this role, she also leads group education classes and food demos to teach people how nutrition can help prevent, manage and even reverse some chronic diseases.
Most recently, Hall launched her own nutrition consulting business: Nina’s Nutritional Values, LLC. She says her mission is to ensure that people have the skills, knowledge and confidence needed to achieve their diet and health goals.
“It’s very important that each client views our relationship as a partnership or therapeutic alliance,” Hall says. “As a result, the client is more apt to believe that he or she can make healthy changes.”