What does a Nutrition Coach and a Health Coach do?
A Nutrition Coach and Health Coach both support, guide and motivate clients to make lifestyle changes helping them achieve their health goals. They work alongside clients to create achievable action plans and provide ongoing support and encouragement enabling behaviour change and success.
Their skills in coaching and wellness are in huge demand as society moves towards preventative healthcare away from sick care providing and a healthier future for everyone.
What can a Nutrition Coach and Health Coach not do?
Neither a Nutrition Coach nor Health Coach is able to assess symptoms, make a diagnosis, assess the root cause, treat a health issue or recommend supplementation. They are able to guide and support clients. They are not Nutritional Therapists, Nutritionists, Dieticians, Doctors, Therapists or Counsellors. They are not medically trained.
Nutritional Therapists and Registered Nutritionists are able to assess symptoms to find the root cause of health issues and recommend supplementation to provide support but are not able to diagnose or treat. Only medically trained doctors are able to diagnose or treat any health issue.
The difference between a Nutrition Coach and a Health Coach
If you are considering a career in wellness it is important to understand the difference between a Nutrition Coach and a Health Coach.
A Nutrition Coach specialises in guiding clients in healthy eating whereas a Health Coach guides in more general lifestyle changes. It is worth noting that the titles Nutrition Coach and Health Coach are not protected and there may be a large variation in-depth and quality of the training and approach of individuals using these titles.
At Sano, we train a Nutrition Coach in nutritional science enabling them to personalise healthy eating based on a client’s personal preferences and health concerns. Health Coaches are only trained in basic nutrition and dietary models and rather focus on supporting lifestyle and behaviour change, using coaching techniques.
As a Sano Nutrition Coach you are able to support and coach your clients by creating meal plans, recipes and a model for healthy eating specific to your client. You may also guide in grocery shopping choices, store cupboard and fridge cleanouts and basic cooking skills to create simple healthy meals.
Your training ensures you understand how the body works, the impact specific nutrients have on its functioning and how those nutrients can be best obtained from food to be incorporated into your client’s diet specific to them.
By taking a personalised approach rather than a ‘cookie cutter’ dietary model or generalised approach you are able more effectively drive behaviour change ensuring results for your clients.
As a Nutrition Coach you can aid clients in many different health areas including weight loss, immune support, blood sugar balance, metabolic issues, cardiovascular support, sleep and stress management, digestion, gut health, skin health and ageing, mood and musculoskeletal support.
Which is more appropriate for me as a career?
If you have a passion for healthy eating focusing on food and nutrition to help others through coaching and mentoring then it will be more rewarding to develop a career as a Nutrition Coach.
If you are more interested in broader lifestyle change including fitness and exercise coaching but without a truly personalised healthy eating approach then a Health Coach career may be more appropriate. The focus will be more about overall wellness for instance by helping people, get fitter or create a more balanced life.
Why do we at Sano train Nutrition Coaches rather than Health Coaches?
Nutrition is the most important aspect of our health. Without adequate nutrition, the body cannot function and results in illness. Other aspects of lifestyle such as sleep, stress reduction, movement, etc are important but without adequate nutrition, they are not supported.
Without certain nutrients the body cannot support the stress response, cannot produce neurotransmitters to promote sleep, the musculoskeletal system cannot operate effectively.
These are just a few examples of how nutrition is vital to every aspect of our wellbeing. Although not ideal, we can survive without adequate sleep, too much stress and limited exercise; we cannot survive without food!
As a qualified Sano Nutrition Coach, you will be able to support and coach your clients to ensure optimal nutrition supporting their overall wellness and a healthy lifestyle.
Your Business and Career Opportunities
As well as working with clients on a one-to-one basis (online, in person or in groups) both Nutrition Coaches and Health Coaches can be employed in a variety of settings such as the healthcare sector in doctors surgeries and clinics, corporates, schools, colleges, wellness centres and health food stores.
A Nutrition Coach may also work within hospitality (restaurants, cafes, hotels, etc), private catering, product development, provide healthy cooking demonstrations in multiple settings, organise wellness retreats, provide freelance media on food and nutrition.
For those already working within wellness i.e. pilates or fitness instructors, who wish to differentiate their services, becoming a Nutrition Coach is a natural choice as it complements their existing skills. There are so many different ways that you can work as a Nutrition Coach – the list really is endless.
Making your choice
Which route you take depends on where your real passions lie. Health coaches support and mentor general lifestyle changes. A Nutrition Coach will have a strong interest in food and health with in-depth nutrition knowledge and is able to provide their clients with a personalised approach to healthy eating.
A Sano Nutrition Coach brings back the joy of eating to others, helping them have the freedom to eat food they love whilst staying healthy. There are an infinite number of ways to achieve this and our coaches all develop their unique businesses that play to their strengths and fulfil their own passions.