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What is a Health Coach?

Health coaching is a quickly evolving field, and it’s growing more in popularity. With millions of people suffering from preventable lifestyle-related diseases, Health Coaches are uniquely positioned to bring about lasting change in the lives of individuals all across the globe and help spread the ripple effect of empowered health and happiness. Health Coaches use a forward-thinking approach. The support Health Coaches can offer is both science- and experience-based; it’s a combination of traditional and modern approaches catered to each bio-individual client. In addition to supporting clients with specific goals, Health Coaches empower clients to choose health-promoting behaviors that work for them. They raise awareness and offer support as clients move in their own bio-individual ways toward the greater health they want for themselves. Coaching hopefully leads to long-term behavior change, but only because Health Coaches help clients do the meaningful work that forms a strong foundation.

What is the difference between a dietitian, nutritionist, and a Health Coach?

A dietitian – sometimes called a registered dietitian (RD) or a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) - is a food and nutrition expert who completes rigorous training and satisfies national standards to practice. Dietitians can help diagnose and treat nutrition-related illnesses. Clinical dietitians work in hospitals, long-term care facilities, in- and outpatient clinics, and private practice. They often care for individuals experiencing eating disorders, substance abuse issues, or medical conditions with symptoms that can be improved or managed with diet. Registered dietitians often collaborate with mental health professionals to screen for eating disorders. They create unique nutrition plans for their clients and help them maintain healthy eating habits based on their medical needs.

Nutritionists focus on the dietary aspect of a client’s well-being so desired health goals can be reached through food and potential supplementation, such as weight loss, biomarker improvement, and even chronic disease reversal. They create meal plans based on the client’s specific needs (e.g., a low-sodium, low-sugar, high-fiber diet for someone looking to reverse their high blood pressure), and look into whether their clients would benefit for nutritional supplements. Nutritionists aid their clients in understanding how food and supplements are digested and assimilated in the body, which helps explain why they recommend certain foods and supplements