Edit ModuleShow Tags
Published:

Virtual Reality: The New Frontier in Dietetics?



Virtual Reality: The New Frontier in Dietetics?

Photo: Thinkstock/g-stockstudio


You’ve probably heard about virtual reality, or VR, but have you experienced it? Up until a few months ago, I was one of those people who hadn't. I had my first VR experience when I was asked to create content for FNCE by filming in a grocery store with a 360-degree camera. 

Going from something familiar like a point-and-shoot to something that covers everything around me was challenging. I had to get used to being aware of not just what I was filming, but the little things like my feet being in a shot or the person walking beside me in the grocery store. After working around these challenges, the camera became easy to use.

The real fun came when it was time to edit and watch my content. With a special set of goggles — I used an affordable cardboard brand — I was immersed into the virtual world. When I looked up, left or right, I could see what was around me at the time of recording. It was as if I was back at the grocery store again. It felt very much like reality.

Practical Use of VR

Virtual reality is fun, but is it practical? The answer is yes! Most of my filming was in a grocery store, and the technology would be perfect to give grocery store “tours” for clients unable to go to a store, helping them to have a better understanding of what it’s like to select healthier options in the store. VR also can be used as a tool for cooking demonstrations. Watching someone cook food on TV or the internet is one thing, but being immersed into a virtual reality where you feel as though you’re the one cooking would make techniques and ingredients easier to understand. Lastly, both client and dietitian can benefit from use of VR in private practice. Instead of doing a 24-hour recall or even a food diary, dietitians can ask clients to record their meals, from purchasing and preparing to cooking and eating. This would give RDNs an immersive, firsthand experience and a better understanding of their clients’ daily lives.

The Future of Dietetics

Finally, VR also could be the next step in training future RDNs. This could be extremely beneficial in the clinical setting. For example, most dietetics students have seen pictures or videos of how to insert PEG tubes or TPN IVs, but what about doing it firsthand? For pre-internship students, VR can help with familiarity of what to do before doing it in person. This would greatly increase dietetic interns’ confidence in their abilities.

Virtual reality is a tool we can use in dietetics to benefit students, RDNs and clients alike. Whether it be simply learning a new way of teaching or gaining a better understanding of clients, VR is the way of the future and the possibilities are endless.


EJ OttoEJ Otto is a graduate of LaSalle University with a BSN in Nutrition, and a Foodservice Manager with Aramark's Higher Education Division. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn

More Articles

Informatics Is a Skill to Take with You

Informatics Is a Skill to Take with You

I have been a RDN for almost eight years and I've found that, no matter where I go, technology and informatics are changing the way we do everything.
Renée Mitchell Simpson: "Green Is the New Black"

Renée Mitchell Simpson: "Green Is the New Black"

Through her private practice, Renee Simpson, RDN, counsels predominantly African American women because, "with an overwhelming four out of five African American women being obese, I found this to be the niche I needed to fill."
Savor: Clams

Savor: Clams

Found along the East and West Coasts of the U.S., both hard- and soft-shell clams are mildly salty and have a soft, chewy texture.
Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Advertise with Food & Nutrition
Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags


Student Scoop

A guest blog written for students members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

About This Blog

Student Scoop is a guest blog written by members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics for students and interns in nutrition and dietetics. Content – including information, recipes and views expressed – is that of the authors and does not reflect the positions or policies of Food & Nutrition Magazine or the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Bloggers are required to pledge they will not write for Student Scoop on topics, companies or trade organizations they currently represent or have represented at any time. 

Learn about our guest blogs!

Comments Policy

Food & Nutrition Magazine provides this forum to exchange ideas, opinions and contributions within a positive community. Diverse viewpoints and constructive, respectful dialogue are welcome. Rudeness, misinformation, self-promotion and abuse are not. We reserve the right, without warning or notification, to remove comments and block users we determine violate this policy or our Terms & Conditions. You must include your name or be logged into a personal account on Disqus, Facebook, Twitter or Google+ to comment.

Archives


Edit Module

Get Student Scoop in Your RSS

Use your RSS reader's instructions to add Student Scoop to your list:

Atom Feed Subscribe to Student Scoop ยป

Get Our Blogs in Your Email

Stone Soup
Student Scoop