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What does a Holistic Nutritionist do?

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  • Written By: D. Jeffress
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 21 May 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
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A holistic nutritionist helps clients make smart, natural dietary choices to improve their overall health. He or she typically focuses on the benefits of organic foods and all-natural dietary supplements. In addition, a holistic nutritionist promotes the importance of a positive attitude toward nutrition and exercise to fully reap the benefits of a healthier diet. Many nutritionists work for private companies, health food stores, and hospitals, but some professionals are self-employed consultants.

When meeting with a client, a holistic nutritionist typically asks about his or her health concerns and weight goals. The nutritionist can explain how organic foods and herbal supplements can help to improve digestive and immune system health, and tailor a custom diet plan to meet the client’s specific goals. He or she explains that sticking to the plan and staying positive about fitness can lead to a happier, more fulfilling life.

It is important for a holistic nutritionist to be familiar with a wide variety of available natural remedies. There are hundreds of different types of herbal supplements, essential oils, and vitamins on health store shelves, and a nutritionist needs to know the benefits and shortcomings of each in order to provide clients with accurate information. In addition, a nutritionist usually knows where to look for local deals on certain products and foods.

The requirements to become a holistic nutritionist can vary, but professionals who want to earn licensure or certification typically need to hold bachelor's degrees. A degree program in nutrition or health can provide a fundamental understanding of digestion, disease, exercise science, and the importance of healthy living. A student learns about the functions of fiber, vitamins, and other essential nutrients that can be obtained from organic foods and supplements. With a degree, a person typically needs to take regional licensing exams or certification tests before he or she can start working independently with clients.

While few people would argue against the benefits of healthy foods and natural diets, an individual who suffers from chronic health problems should consult with a doctor before making major lifestyle changes. A physician can make sure the patient understands that certain natural remedies are not good substitutes for proven medications. Herbal supplements can certainly be helpful, but many of the products at health food stores have not been subjected to the same rigorous clinical trials as pharmaceuticals. By working with a doctor and a holistic nutritionist together, a person can be sure that he or she has all the tools necessary to stay healthy.

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