Is a Nutrition Certification Worth It? Learn the Benefits of Being Certified

What do a physician, dietitian, licensed medical social employee, side-hustling diet coach, and private coach all have in widespread?

No, this isn’t the starting of a horrible joke…

The reply: We interviewed folks in every of these careers, and all of them stated getting a diet certification was price it. 

However is a diet certification price it, for you?

On this article, we’ll discover that query.

The reality is, a diet certification’s worth-it rating depends upon your scenario.

That can assist you weigh all the professionals and cons, we put collectively this complete information, full with a free self-assessment instrument that can assist you make the determination for your self.

On this article, you’ll additionally discover:

  • The important questions to think about earlier than getting a diet certification.
  • 5 surprising aspect advantages of getting licensed.
  • Why a diet certification usually interprets into higher shopper success.
  • How a diet certification can increase your revenue potential.
  • Insights from seven profitable licensed diet coaches from a wide selection of professions.


5 questions that’ll provide help to resolve if a diet certification is price it

Determining whether or not a diet certification is price it may be difficult. Partially, as a result of all of us outline “price it” in a different way.

As an example, is a diet certification price it in the event you:

  • Acquire data you could obtain your profession objectives?
  • Earn extra money as a result of of it?
  • Get extra purchasers or new alternatives afterwards?
  • Learn one thing that adjustments your diet philosophy?
  • Create connections with like-minded folks in your trade?

Take into account the following inquiries to outline what “price it” means to you.

How one can use this quiz to make your determination

Every part under ends with a query. You’ll rank your response on a scale from Zero to five. (Simply click on the quantity in your display screen, and your outcomes will routinely populate at the finish of the quiz.)

When you’ve answered all 5 questions, you’ll get a price it/not price it consequence.

Should you’re undecided find out how to reply a number of of the 5 questions (or simply need to contemplate it from a number of angles), you’ll discover bins labeled “dig deeper” with prompts for additional reflection.

Our recommendation: Hold a journal helpful. Jot down your ideas so that you’ll have one thing to seek advice from when making your determination.

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Query #1: Does a diet certification fill a hole in your data?

A diet certification is price it if it helps you achieve key data or abilities, in response to the coaches we interviewed.

Listed here are a few real-life examples of how a diet certification can fill data gaps.

The private coach who needed to grasp diet

The discharge of a massively popular Netflix nutrition documentary, coupled with a ensuing deluge of shopper questions, made private coach Tyler Buckingham, PN1, PPSC, understand the full extent of diet misinformation.

He needed to higher perceive the dialogue in addition to be capable to reply shopper questions with authority. “I used to be like, okay, it’s time to get licensed in diet,” says Buckingham, who trains a group of former athletes.

Since getting licensed, he’s way more adept at answering the diet questions purchasers lob his approach—particularly difficult ones with no clear reply.

“I like having that flexibility and having the ability to say, ‘Hey, you possibly can do this, or you possibly can attempt that. What do you need to do? Let’s have a dialog about it.’”

In the finish, Buckingham is aware of his purchasers are getting solutions to their questions, and the actionable recommendation they should hold transferring ahead.

The physician who needed to present higher recommendation

A household medication resident and CrossFit Degree 1 coach, Kristina Hines, DO, PN1, felt assured speaking to sufferers about train. However the few hours of diet training she obtained in medical faculty simply weren’t slicing it.

“I didn’t actually know what to inform sufferers nutritionally,” she says.

Her sufferers usually had particular questions on find out how to eat, whether or not numerous diets have been proper for them, and what meals calmed their signs.

Dr. Hines needed a deeper degree of dietary understanding, so she determined to pursue a diet certification.

Because of the certification course, Dr. Hines now feels comfy answering nearly any diet query sufferers provide you with.

The registered dietitian who needed to study conduct change

Jennifer Broxterman, MS, RD, was already a dietitian when she obtained her diet certification. However she needed to study extra about the psychology of conduct change and motivational interviewing.

“As a college professor, I prefer to see totally different instructing strategies and totally different studying kinds,” she says.

For her, getting a Precision Nutrition Degree 1 certification meant gaining perspective on how conduct change really works, so she may higher implement it along with her purchasers.

Will a diet certification fill a hole in your data?

already know all the things
have a main data hole


Dig deeper

  • What are you hoping to study from a diet certification? How will the certification provide help to study it?
  • What abilities would provide help to attain extra folks, or enhance your work with them? May a diet certification assist?
  • How do you’re feeling when diet questions come up? How does that evaluate to the way you’d prefer to really feel?

Query #2: Will a diet certification carry you further and invaluable advantages?

Folks usually cite advantages of turning into licensed that transcend their preliminary motive for doing so, resembling:

  • enhanced credibility
  • extra confidence
  • improved communication abilities
  • alternatives to study from friends and specialists in the area
  • a more healthy relationship with meals

Beneath, we’ll cowl every of these advantages intimately, so you may resolve in the event that they’re price it for you.

Profit #1: Enhanced credibility

After Vivian Gill, MA, RN-BC, CPT,  earned her diet certification, she seen one thing that stunned her: “My credibility elevated,” says the registered nurse, private coach, and way of life coach. “Shoppers know I’m evidence-based and never biased, they usually’ve felt the distinction.”

Gill noticed that tons of different trainers in her neighborhood pushed weight-reduction plan, counting macros, and detoxing. Her diet certification helped her understand that a totally different strategy would resonate extra along with her purchasers.

“I’ve determined to be the voice of motive and beauty,” she provides.

Profit #2: Extra confidence

What does Buckingham see as the greatest hidden profit of getting licensed? “Undoubtedly the confidence I’ve now,” he says.

Not way back, a shopper got here to him eager to shed extra pounds. Throughout their consumption, Buckingham discovered the shopper had already misplaced a number of kilos. Clearly, the individual was doing a lot proper.

In the previous, Buckingham would have felt pressured to ship a utterly totally different program—for the sake of it. Because of what he discovered from his certification, nevertheless, he confidently inspired his shopper to maintain going with some of the identical methods.

Buckingham additionally feels extra relaxed speaking about diet’s grey areas.

As a substitute of claiming to know all of it, he feels comfy saying: “Hey, I don’t know the reply to this query, however I’ll discover out,”  or “Why don’t we see if it really works? Then after a week, we will see what occurred, and take it from there.”

Profit #3: Improved teaching and communication abilities

Some diet certification programs, like Precision Nutrition Degree 1, embody info on the artwork of teaching in addition to diet science. In different phrases, half of the course trains you to speak to your purchasers extra successfully. (Need to see what we imply? Try our FREE Nutrition Coaching e-course.)

Josh Chang, PN1, a dietitian and proprietor of Mycro Nutrition, says getting a certification was price it for him as a result of it taught him find out how to discuss to purchasers about their obstacles.

“Dietitians are educated to make use of a little bit of motivational interviewing and empathize with purchasers, however Precision Nutrition teaches you to take that one or two steps additional—to get to know the shopper and find out how to dig into why they could be saying what they are saying or doing what they’re doing.”

“A diet certification could also be price it in the event you want a little assist strengthening these communication or rapport constructing abilities,” he provides.

Profit #4: Alternatives to study from friends and specialists in the area

Some diet certifications provide Fb teams, on-line boards, and even in-person occasions. These assets present coaches with a likelihood to attach with like-minded well being professionals, get enter from others on challenges and, in some instances, entry prime specialists in the diet area.

Having a giant neighborhood of coaches at his fingertips was one of the greatest surprising advantages for Chang.

“When you enroll in PN Degree 1 or 2, you get invited to a Fb group. I significantly take pleasure in seeing how totally different coaches reply when folks publish questions. Some teaching options are simply so out of left area, in a great way. I’m like, ‘I’d’ve by no means thought of that, however it’s good.’”

Profit #5: A more healthy relationship with meals

Jenna Ashby PA-C, PN1, an oncology doctor assistant, determined to turn into a diet coach after overcoming disordered consuming.

Although Ashby primarily makes use of her diet certification in her aspect job at Breathe CrossFit in Derry, New Hampshire, she additionally got here away from the expertise with some private takeaways.

“It helped solidify what I’ve been constructing upon the previous few years, and it helped me discover extra peace with myself,” says Ashby. “I now know, with out a doubt: I can love my physique, be okay with my physique, and appropriately nourish it.”

“That’s large as a result of I as soon as thought that, if I needed to eat, I needed to train, or vice versa. Now, that mentality is reversed: As a way to be sturdy and really feel sturdy I have to nourish myself. The PN certification actually solidified that for me,” she says.

Will a diet certification carry you further and invaluable advantages?

not invaluable in any respect
massively invaluable


Dig deeper

  • How would you want purchasers to view your data about diet, and the way do you suppose you’re at the moment measuring as much as that?
  • How assured do you’re feeling about your diet suggestions when working with purchasers? Whenever you aren’t certain about one thing, how do you deal with it?
  • How would you charge your present teaching and communication abilities? Whenever you discuss to folks about diet, how does your message appear to be obtained?
  • The place do you at the moment join with friends and specialists in your area? How may you profit from further alternatives?
  • How would you describe your present diet philosophy and your relationship with meals? Is there room for enchancment right here?

Query #3: Does a diet certification line up together with your profession objectives?

A diet certification lets you make diet suggestions to in any other case wholesome purchasers. 

With a diet certification, you’ll be certified to:

  • Give the proper diet recommendation at the proper time
  • Develop an motion plan your purchasers will really observe
  • Assist folks remodel their our bodies and their well being

These {qualifications} may be helpful in a selection of careers.

What are your profession alternatives with a diet certification?

Folks usually surprise if they should go to (or return to) a college to get began with a profession in diet. For sure jobs (resembling registered dietitian), you want a specialised diploma and coaching.

However there’s additionally a lot you are able to do with a diet certification alone. Coaches in our neighborhood have job titles like:

  • Nutrition coach
  • Sports activities diet coach
  • Weight reduction coach
  • Weight administration advisor
  • Company wellness educator
  • Nutrition program supervisor at a gymnasium or different well being facility
  • Excessive-performance advisor
  • Keep-at-home mother or father and part-time diet coach

If you have already got further certifications or levels (or plan to get them), there could also be different profession choices. Some PN-certified coaches are additionally:

  • Registered dietitians
  • Sports activities nutritionists
  • Private trainers and power coaches who do diet teaching
  • Bodily therapists who do diet teaching
  • Medical doctors, nurses, and doctor assistants who do diet teaching
  • Psychologists, psychotherapists, and social staff who do diet teaching

What are you not certified to do?

It’s vital to notice that Medical Nutrition Remedy (MNT)—which entails giving diet recommendation to deal with or treatment illness—is out of scope until you’re particularly MNT-accredited. You gained’t be certified to do that with a diet certification alone, and you must by no means attempt.

Relying on the place you reside, guidelines and rules range on what folks with diet certifications are allowed to do.

As an example, in some states in the US, the solely individuals who can present meal plans are registered dietitians. However in these states, diet coaches can nonetheless assist folks with their consuming so long as they’re not telling folks precisely what they need to and shouldn’t eat.

Should you take a Precision Nutrition certification, you’ll study that meal plans, deeming foods “off-limits,” and telling people exactly what to eat aren’t our fashion anyway. In our diet certification, you’ll learn to get outcomes with out utilizing these techniques.

Does a diet certification line up together with your profession objectives?

don’t line up in any respect
sure, they utterly line up


Dig deeper

  • How can diet teaching match into your present job? Or are you seeking to pursue a new profession in diet?
  • Take a have a look at the job titles listed above. Which of them sound attention-grabbing to you and/or resonate together with your profession objectives?
  • Do you want a diet certification to be certified (or really feel assured sufficient) to carry the job titles you listed in the earlier query? Why or why not?

Query #4: Will a diet certification assist the purchasers you’re employed with (or need to work with)?

Our grads say a diet certification might help you present a higher service to your purchasers (or potential purchasers). This service can’t solely concentrate on what they eat, but additionally how they suppose, really feel, and go about their each day routine. (We name this “deep health” coaching.)

This lets you work out what’s actually holding purchasers again from making the lasting adjustments they really need.

That’s vital since many individuals get a diet certification, no less than partly, as a result of they need to assist folks—even when it’s their buddies or members of the family. So it’s worthwhile to think about how getting licensed will assist the folks you’re employed with (or ultimately need to work with).

As an example, Buckingham now consists of diet teaching his private coaching purchasers as an added worth service. “Should you’re assembly me in individual, I’ll usually say, ‘Hey, let’s discuss diet. Let’s just remember to get these questions answered,’” he explains.

Getting a diet certification may additionally enhance shopper experiences. “I believe it’s made me a higher practitioner,” Dr. Hines says.

Growing her motivational interviewing abilities, she says, helped her strategy conversations about diet in a approach that makes sufferers really feel extra relaxed.

“Now, I’m in a position to meet my sufferers the place they’re as an alternative of having them really feel like I’m simply lecturing them. I actually attempt to empower sufferers to know that they’ve a say on this. It’s not simply me telling them what they need to do.”

Lastly, a diet certification could assist purchasers get higher outcomes.

For instance, Kelly Lynch, LCSW, EMT, CPT, PN1, a therapist who makes a speciality of treating first responders, started suggesting purchasers discuss to their physicians about blood work and different diagnostic assessments, particularly when she suspected their psychological well being signs could be associated to (or exacerbated by) dietary deficiencies, GI dysfunction, or hormonal points.

When one of her purchasers described worsening melancholy together with digestive points, Lynch thought of a situation she’d discovered about throughout her certification that would contribute to those signs: SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth). She inspired the shopper to ask their physician about it.

Positive sufficient, testing revealed Lynch’s hunch was right, and the shopper’s melancholy improved as soon as the SIBO was handled.

Will a diet certification assist your purchasers?

gained’t assist in any respect
will assist majorly


Dig deeper

  • What further worth would your purchasers obtain in the event you obtained a diet certification?
  • How would extra data and higher teaching/communication abilities enhance purchasers’ experiences?
  • In what approach would diet and training experience assist your purchasers get higher outcomes?

Query #5: Will a diet certification increase your revenue potential, or present different monetary advantages?

Primarily based on our survey of 1000 nutrition coaches and additional independent research, coaches with a diet certification earn barely extra per hour than coaches with out one.

In case you have two to 3 certifications, you’ll earn a median $12 extra per hour than coaches with only one.

And coaches with a Precision Nutrition certification earn 11 % extra than folks with different certifications.

So it’s secure to say that, on common, licensed coaches earn extra.

For Chang, getting a diet certification was the impetus to start out his personal teaching enterprise, getting him out of a hospital diet setting and into the driver’s seat of his personal profession and incomes potential.

Lynch skilled higher curiosity in her remedy companies after sharing that she’d gotten licensed in diet. It additionally helped her launch a teaching aspect enterprise, offering a further income stream.

For some, a diet certification could be an avenue to saving cash. Along with enabling her to start out a aspect job as a diet coach, Ashby says getting licensed meant she not felt like she wanted to pay for diet teaching from another person. Now, she feels completely assured adjusting her personal consuming habits.

Will a diet certification increase your revenue potential, or present different monetary advantages?

by no means
sure, completely


Dig deeper

  • Will getting a diet certification mean you can cost purchasers greater than you might be at the moment, or provide new companies?
  • How may getting licensed in diet improve curiosity in your companies? May it assist develop your shopper base?
  • How may getting a diet certification doubtlessly prevent cash, in phrases of companies you’ll not want or outsourcing you’ll not need to do?

So is a diet certification price it?


Now discover your rating vary to see if a diet certification is price it.

20 and above: Sure, a diet certification is price it for you!

Primarily based in your solutions, it appears like a diet certification will repay. By getting licensed, you’ll degree up your:

  • diet science and training data
  • profession alternatives and training companies
  • potential to assist purchasers
  • revenue potential
  • and a lot extra.

6 to 19: A diet certification could be price it for you.

Primarily based in your solutions, it appears like a diet certification will repay in some methods, however won’t in others.

The massive query so that you can contemplate: Do the doubtless advantages outweigh the prices?

To reply that, take one other have a look at your quiz solutions, particularly at the ones the place you scored a Four or 5.

Evaluate the advantages with the price related to getting licensed.

For instance, let’s say you ranked excessive for a certification filling a data hole in addition to for it doubtless bringing in additional revenue. For prices, perhaps you have already got the cash put aside in addition to the time to take and cross a course. In that case, you’ll doubtless resolve that a certification is price it.

On the different hand, let’s say you picked 5 for a certification lining up together with your profession objectives. For all of the different questions, you select a Three or decrease. On prime of that, you’d need to borrow cash to pay for a certification. And also you’re already working two jobs. Oh, and also you’ve obtained a child on the approach. Effectively, a certification won’t be price it to you—not proper now anyway.

5 and beneath: It doesn’t seem to be a diet certification is price it for you.

Primarily based in your solutions, it’s not clear that you just’ll discover a diet certification to be price it. That stated, there are at all times exceptions.

You could be taken with getting a certification simply in your personal private profit—not in your profession. It’s possible you’ll not need to work with purchasers, earn cash by diet teaching, or change jobs, and that’s completely legit.

It doesn’t matter what you resolve, it’s vital to have a clear image of your reasoning. Hopefully, that’s what you’ve gained by this self-assessment.

The place to go from right here

Should you resolve to get a diet certification, you might have fairly a few packages to select from.

For steering, try this in-depth article: How to choose the right nutrition certification program for YOU.

Studying find out how to coach purchasers, sufferers, buddies, or members of the family by wholesome consuming and way of life adjustments—in a approach that’s customized for his or her distinctive physique, preferences, and circumstances—is each an artwork and a science.

Should you’d prefer to study extra about each, contemplate the Precision Nutrition Level 1 Certification. The subsequent group kicks off shortly.

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