It’s everywhere! And for good reason of course. Most of us know that good nutrition is extremely important for literally every aspect of our lives. We don’t need any convincing here.
But what we do need to be aware of is that there are a lot of different nutritional experts out there who practice nutrition in very different ways.
The intention of this post is to draw your attention to some of the different types of nutritional services around so that you can choose the type that suits your needs best.
Nutrition Experts and Services They Offer
Clinical Dieticians/ Dieticians – These are the most regulated type of professionals. Usually they work in a clinical setting with either healthy or sick patients. If you have a very specific nutritional need for example you have coeliac disease or kidney problems etc… then these are the people to go to.
Registered Nutritionists – These are people who have done an approved nutrition course and have registered with a professional body. They usually work with healthy patients and with groups of people to promote optimal health and nutrition. They usually work privately but recently many government programmes are beginning to involve Nutritionists in clinical settings. An example of this is the Healthier You programme and the Diabetes Prevention Programme by the NHS in the UK.
Nutritional/Health Coach – This is a relatively new profession, created by the sheer demand of it. These are people who are usually registered Nutritionists and who want to take it a step further and offer a more hands on approach to their practice. They work mostly with healthy individuals who want to lose weight, reduce body fat percentage or simply optimise their diet.
The Demand Created by Today’s Society
Let’s be honest here. Most of us know what is healthy for us to eat and what is not. Buuuut we slip off the healthy bandwagon one too many times.
We need accountability. We need someone to keep pushing us and keep reminding us of our goals so we can keep going. We need that emergency contact to reach out to when we feel we’re about to sway or if we feel the dreaded taste of guilt after a binge.
That’s what Nutritional Coaches are here for.
Reasons Why Nutritional Coaching Is a Must in Today’s World
- They will give you a flexible healthy nutritional plan that is designed to be easily integrated into your lifestyle.
- They will bring you back in for follow-ups at regular intervals. This is very important as those sessions are extremely motivational. You will share the struggles you experienced since your previous session and your coach will offer you tips and tricks on how to tackle them. You will leave the follow-up feeling super excited and pumped to continue your healthy lifestyle.
- You will have body composition measurements taken at every follow-up. Your coach will keep a track of your progress. Simply seeing the changes from week to week will give you that extra boost in confidence and motivation.
- You will never feel alone on your journey. Usually nutritional coaches organise facebook groups, WhatsApp groups or some other type of social media page and encourage all participants to share their journey, ask questions or simply chat with other fellow health enthusiasts.
- They will help you change your lifestyle for good. You will quite literally have your hand held at every step of the way until you feel confident and comfortable enough to continue your healthy lifestyle on your own.
How to Find a Good Nutritional Coach
This really depends on where you live, although there are many excellent experts that operate online too. The only difference with online coaches is that the progress tracking would need to be done by you rather than your coach. And for some people, particularly if they lack the necessary tools such as machine analysing body fat percentage – it may be a problem. Nevertheless, something is better than nothing.
In the UK, Australia and USA a simple online search will undoubtedly yield a large number of potentially great nutritional coaches. Make sure you read their reviews and check whether they fulfil all the key points mentioned above.
If you are in Cyprus you are welcome to come and see me. My background is in Herbal Medicine and I am a Registered Nutritionist. I’ve worked for the Healthier You and Diabetes Prevention Programme in the UK which is a big reason I believe nutritional coaching is so important. Because it works and I’ve seen it work time and time again.
Otherwise, if you’re anywhere else in the world – perhaps visit your primary care practitioner and see whether they are aware of such professions or search online as well.