Update to Mississippi Law Effective May 16, 2022
The law of Mississippi provides licensure for dietitians, and only those with a license may provide Medical Nutrition Therapy and nutrition care. In response to a lawsuit filed by the Mississippi Justice Institute in 2020, new exceptions and exemptions became effective on May 16, 2022. The Mississippi State Department of Health has amended Mississippi Code § 73-10-21expanding the exemptions/exceptions for unlicensed holistic nutrition professionals.
The regulation protects the titles of “dietitian” and “nutritionist” or use of the letters “LD,” “LN” “RD” or any other facsimile thereof when he or she is not licensed in accordance with the provisions of these regulations. The regulation further states that any person who violates any provision of the Act or Regulations may be found guilty of a misdemeanor. The punishment, is a fine of $1,000.00, imprisonment of up to six months, or both a fine and imprisonment for each offense.
Exceptions: No person shall engage in the practice of dietetics or represent himself to be a dietitian unless he is licensed by the Board, except as otherwise provided in this section.
- A student enrolled in an approved academic program in dietetics, if such practice constitutes a part of a supervised course of study, and if the student is designated by a title which clearly indicated his or her status as a student or trainee.
- A registered dietitian who is serving in the Armed Forces or the Public Health Service of the United States or is employed by the Veteran Affairs provided such practice is related to such service or employment.
- Any person providing dietetic services, including but not limited to dietetic technicians, dietetic assistants, and dietary managers, working under the direct technical supervision of a licensed dietitian, except that such persons may not use the title “dietitian” or “”
- Persons licensed or registered to practice the health professions when covered under the scope of practice of his or her profession, except that such persons may not use the title “dietitian” or “”
- Persons who perform the activities and services of a nutrition educator in the employ of a federal, state, county or municipal agency, or another political subdivision, or a chartered elementary or secondary school or accredited degree-granting educational institution insofar as such activities
- Regulations Governing Licensure of Dietitians Mississippi State Department of Health – and services are part of a salaried position except that such persons may not use the title “dietitian” or “”.
- Federal, state, county or local employees involved with programs providing the services of nutrition educator that help to prevent disease and maintain good nutritional health, including but not limited to the Cooperative Extension Service, the Child Nutrition Program, and Project Head Start, except that such persons may not use the title “dietitian” or “”
- Individuals who do not hold themselves out to be dietitians from marketing or distributing food products including dietary supplements as defined by the Food and Drug Administration or from engaging in the explanation and education of customers regarding the use of such products, except that such persons may not use the title “dietitian” or “”
- Any individual who provides individualized nutrition recommendations, nutrition information, guidance, encouragement, health coaching, holistic and wellness education, motivation, behavior change management, or non-medical weight control services, provided that the individual does not: (i) provide medical nutrition therapy as defined in Rule 3.1.3(11) or (ii) hold himself or herself out as a licensed dietitian or licensed nutritionist as prohibited under Rule 3.5.1.
- A nonresident dietitian may practice dietetics in Mississippi for five (5) days with other state’s licensure or with registration with the American Dietetics Association.
Link to Full Text: Regulations Governing Licensure of Dietitians Mississippi State Department of Health: Title 15: Part 19, Subpart 60, Chapter 3
Subchapter 9: Exception and Exemptions: Rule 3.9.1 Exceptions
Criminal Offenses and Punishment:
Rule 3.10.1 Offenses: Any person who violates any provision of the Act, or these regulations promulgated thereto shall, upon conviction thereof, be guilty of a misdemeanor.
Rule 3.10.2 Punishment: Such misdemeanor shall, upon conviction, be punishable by a fine of not more than One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) or by imprisonment for not more than six (6) months or by both fine and imprisonment for each offense.