10 Essential Tips for Dietitians Nailing Live Television Segments

by Lindsey McGregor, RD
Lindsey McGregor, Dietitian

Live television segments offer a fantastic opportunity for Dietitians to share their expertise and educate the public about healthy eating habits. However, the fast-paced, and LIVE nature of these segments can be both exhilarating and nerve-wracking. 

To ensure your message is effectively communicated and resonates with the audience, here are 10 invaluable tips for Dietitians preparing for live television appearances.

Choose a Compelling Message: Start by selecting a message that truly matters to you and your audience. Whether it’s debunking a nutrition myth or highlighting the benefits of a particular diet, a clear and impactful message will help you connect with viewers and keep them engaged.

Briefing and Background Research: When pitching a segment, provide the show’s producers with a comprehensive briefing that outlines your expertise and the key points you intend to cover. This helps them tailor the segment to your strengths and ensures a seamless discussion.

Food Presentation Matters: Remember, television is a VISUAL medium. Collaborate with a chef or culinary expert to present the food in an appealing and visually enticing manner. Their expertise can elevate the presentation, making the segment more engaging for viewers.

Dress the Part: Choose clothing that aligns with your message and the tone of the segment. Opt for solid, plain colours that complement your skin tone. If the segment takes place in front of a green screen, avoid wearing green. Makeup will enhance your appearance, and don’t forget the pressed powder which helps reduce shine.

Green Screen Alert: Be cautious with green foods if you’re in front of a green screen. Green items might appear invisible due to the screen’s colour. Ensure you’re aware of the technical setup to avoid any visual glitches.

Food Demonstration vs. Cooking: While demonstrating food preparation is important, remember that your primary goal is education, not a full-blown cooking show. Focus on showcasing basic foods that support your message, and avoid getting caught up in the cooking process itself.

Rehearse Key Messages Not Lines: Prepare and rehearse your key messages, but avoid memorizing lines. Embrace flexibility in your delivery to maintain a natural and conversational tone during the segment. Practice will build your confidence and ensure a smooth flow.

Relax and Be Yourself: Remember, you’re the expert in the room. Take a deep breath, and remind yourself that you’re sharing valuable insights. Nerves are natural, but your knowledge will shine through as long as you stay calm and confident. 

Kindness to Yourself: Perfection isn’t the goal—delivering valuable information is. If you find yourself critiquing your performance, remember that even seasoned professionals have room for improvement. Acknowledge your efforts and use each appearance as a learning opportunity.

Public Speaking Support: Join a group like Toastmasters to enhance your public speaking skills. Minimizing filler words such as “ums” and “ahs” will result in a polished and impactful delivery. The ability to communicate clearly and confidently is a powerful asset in live television segments.

Stay True to Your Purpose: Always center your focus on your mission to promote wellness. This isn’t about showcasing your expertise or ego—it’s about helping people make healthier choices. Keeping this purpose at the forefront will ground you and ensure your segment remains impactful.

As a Dietitian, sharing your knowledge on live television can be an exciting endeavor that has the potential to positively impact countless viewers. By adhering to these 10 essential tips, you’ll not only ensure a seamless and engaging presentation but also empower individuals to make informed choices about their diets. Remember, every appearance is a chance to inspire change and foster a healthier, more informed society.

Are you a Dietitian in private practice? Consider listing yourself on Dietitian Directory where people can search by practice area and location.

Here is a link to a recent Heart Health Segment I did promoting Dietitian Directory in Calgary.