Nutrition is a sticky subject in our industry. While the potential revenue could be attractive, we don’t really have much wiggle room in our scope of practice for nutrition consultation. I don’t think there are issues with us explaining the current available guidelines and giving examples. But creating menus and giving specific food recommendations is still out of our scope. And the only legitimate source of such services are Registered Dieticians. I help clients understand the nutritional information on food packaging. I help them with meal timing and counting calories. I give them examples of foods with specific nutrient content and on understanding the “food groups”. But I never tell clients “eat spinach” or any similar direct food choice instructions.
Hi Dianne, I recently completed the ACE Weight Management Certification. It was very broad, covering topics from childhood obesity to understanding behaviors and habits, it provided a good foundation to think about how weight management can be addressed. As others have said, while it is beyond scope of practice for trainers to prescribe meal plans, I think we can inform clients on healthy behaviors as well as counsel them on FDA guidelines on healthy eating and nutrition. Several of my clients follow diets on their own, including Weight Watchers. Also, asking clients to keep a log of what they eat can help those that do it well tremendously. There are many free apps that can do this, and it will allow you to see what they are eating and guide them toward healthier alternatives.
Hello Dianne Della Ratta,
I have the health coach cert and am working on the nutrition specialty cert. We have six months to complete the health coach cert. Yes, we need to still stay in our scope of practice; but, clients will always ask about food and it is good to know more, to keep the conversation going, which is part of the change process, right?
Natalie aka NAPS 2 B Fit.