South Bedfordshire and Luton Dietetics


The Nutrition and Dietetic Service provides dietetic services for adult and paediatric patients across South Bedfordshire and Luton including clinical care in the hospital, community (clinic, domiciliary, care home), mental health and learning disability settings.  Our Food First team focuses on tackling malnutrition by identification, management and prevention within the community. We also have a public health team that delivers public health nutrition initiatives in the community.

The Dietetic team offers effective and evidence-based dietary assessment and treatment for a wide range of conditions. We can help people to understand why dietary changes are necessary and how to manage these changes within their lifestyle. We work individually with patients to set patient centered goals to meet their nutritional needs.  Patients are fully involved with the formulation of their care plans and are reviewed as appropriate.  We share expertise with local groups and work closely with other health professionals.

Community dietitians are able to refer to dietetic colleagues as part of our department based at Luton and Dunstable Hospital (i.e. patients with gastrointestinal conditions or specialist cardiac conditions may need to be under the care of a specialist dietitian).

Who to Refer

Adult patients:

The following types of patients will be offered either clinic appointments (Leighton Buzzard or Houghton Regis) or domiciliary visits (own home or care home) for the following conditions:

  • Malnourished/underweight patients requiring ongoing Food First advice after initial advice on Food First page followed
  • Obesity:  Weight management group sessions will be offered where appropriate; if the patient does not wish for group sessions then an individual clinic appointment will be offered 
  • Patients with long term conditions requiring dietetic advice and support e.g. neurological conditions, coronary heart disease, oncology, COPD
  • Coeliac Disease- Patients with known Coeliac disease requiring additional advice on diet or not under the care of the Gastroenterology Team can be referred to the Community Dietitian. Patients with Diabetes & Coeliac disease should be referred to the Diabetes Dietetic Team
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) -  Patients with confirmed IBS will be offered a group session based at the Luton and Dunstable Hospital. See information attached below for specific advice for diagnosing and referring IBS patients

Home Enteral Tube Feeding
Home Enteral Tube Feeding

Mental Health 
The dietetic service provides a service to inpatient and long stay mental health units within South Bedfordshire and Luton; units refer directly to our service.

Learning disabilities
We visit service users with a learning disability in care homes or their own homes.

Eating disorders
Adult service users with eating disorders will be seen as part of the multidisciplinary eating disorders team based at the Disability Resource Centre.  Please send referrals directly to the DRC.

Patients requiring dietetic advice with Diabetes who meet the criteria will be seen as part of the Bedfordshire Integrated Diabetes Service. All other patients not meeting the criteria for the integrated service will be seen as part of the community service.

Paediatric patients
Information coming soon

Who not to Refer

Patients who are not ready to make changes and engage with the dietetic service including agreeing shared treatment goals

Renal patients under the care of Renal consultants or receiving dialysis- Dietetic care is provided by the renal dietitians based at the Lister Hospital

Underweight/malnourished patients who have not had Food First advice first*- see Food first section if you require additional training or advice (*unless it is an urgent case)

Patients who require support with weight reduction who have a BMI of < 30 with no co-morbidities - please treat in primary care or refer to local weight management groups.

Patients requiring referral to Specialist Obesity Clinic based at the Luton and Dunstable Hospital; this is a separate service. N.B. The Obesity service will reject the referral if the patient has not previously had a community dietetic intervention.


See Food First section for guidance on the management of malnutrition and the Oral Nutritional Supplement formulary as well as other useful resources to support patients at risk of malnutrition.

Additional information on a variety of topics available from British Dietetic Association -  click on 'Food Facts' icon on left

IBS information letter for GPs



Calcium - Dietary Sources

Constipation - Eric's Guide to Children's Bowel Problems

Cow's milk free diet for breastfeeding mums

Fluid - How much do you need

Iron - Dietary Sources

Lactose free - Health Professional Factsheet

Lactose free - Parent Factsheet

Reflux - Healthcare Professional Factsheet

Reflux - Parent Factsheet

Vitamin D Information Sheet

Last updated: 05/09/2018

Update due: 05/09/2019