Although I’ve been eligible for board certification by the National Association of Nutrition Professionals for 6 years, I finally took the time to sit for the exam. When I initially graduated, the test was in an update process and if you know anything about nutrition, you know that it is a new(ish) science and we are learning more day by day. This is why I think continuing education is imperative for any nutrition professional. Studying outdated materials and trying to “guess” the correct answer as of the time the test was written was not appealing to me. All that said, Board Certification is something that can help clients differentiate between a nutrition professional and many of the other terms used by nutrition enthusiasts. In most states, nutritionist is not a defined title and anyone taking a quick certification course can use the title of nutritionist. I’ve even seen a nutritionist certification for sale on Living Social!
What does it mean to be a Board Certified Nutrition Professional? It provides clients and partners with confidence in the following areas.
Credibility - Board certification indicates that I have met the educational and ethical standards required by the professional credentialing body. Many nutrition educational programs are not accredited by the NANP because the scope of study does not meet their rigorous academic standards.
Assurance - Clients, insurance companies, the medical community, and other complementary practitioners are aware that I conduct my business within my legal scope of service and standards of professional conduct.
Validation - My educational and professional qualifications meet the board standards, including proof of a qualified internship as well as validated, positive work directly with clients.
When you consider working with any service professional it’s most important that you trust them, believe in their knowledge and value their experience. It’s an honor and a privilege when you entrust someone so make sure they deserve it! I value any opportunity I have to work with my clients and make a difference in their lives!