How to Become a Nutrition Consultant

How to Become a Nutrition Consultant: Career Path Guide

If you want to become a nutrition consultant, you first need to determine if this career path is a good fit for your skills, interests and personality traits. If the following description sounds like you, then you’re probably well suited for a career as a nutrition consultant:


• You have a keen interest in science, food and nutrition

• You have an interest in helping others

• You are responsible and ethical

• You enjoy the idea of collaborating with and advising other professionals

• You are kind, empathetic and patient

• You have a results-oriented approach to work activities


Below we've outlined what you'll need to begin a career as a nutrition consultant. We've also included helpful information for this career, such as job description, job duties, salary expectations, a list of possible employers and much more!



Education Needed to Become a Nutrition Consultant

The educational requirements for becoming a nutrition consultant vary by employer; some require only a diploma or a bachelor’s degree, while others require a master’s or doctoral degree. This variance is due to the level of knowledge the nutrition consultant needs to perform their job duties with competence, and the level of responsibility inherent in their position.


Some employers require that you have an advanced degree (doctorate or master’s) in a specialized area of nutrition or a closely related field, such as animal nutrition or food science, if you want to work with them as a nutrition consultant.


If an employer requires an advanced, it is degree because their nutrition consultants need extensive knowledge in the area in which that employer operates in order to perform their job with competence.




Nutrition Consultant Job Description

In general, nutrition consultants support the delivery of comprehensive, high quality nutrition programs to groups (which may be businesses, families, community groups and other organizations) or individuals. They also provide guidance, training and technical assistance to these groups and individuals, as well as any staff that work on the program. Their services may be contracted by schools, businesses (for employees wellness programs), food manufacturers, families and other clients.


Part of the scope of responsibility for nutrition consultants may involve supervising the activities of a department that provides food services, counsels individuals, or conducts nutritional research.


The job description of a nutrition consultant can vary widely however, as they may apply their expertise in food science to a variety of industries, and they may work for many different types of employers or clients.


For example, a nutrition consultant that works for a human food or animal feed product manufacturer may have a completely different set of responsibilities. They would likely be responsible for establishing and enforcing ingredient, nutrient, and physical product standards and regulatory compliance for human food or animal feed products, as well as formulating diets, establishing labels and maintaining regulatory compliance.



Nutrition Consultant Job Duties

• Review nutritional assessment data for each client and make recommendations for correcting client’s nutritional status, as needed

• Assist staff with obtaining information about major client nutritional issues

• Ensure that meals and snacks are prepared in such a way that a minimum of nutrients are lost from foods, that foods taste good and look appealing

• Develop and monitor the provision of special diets for clients with documented food allergies or special nutritional needs

• Participate in the client's self-assessment process

• Deliver nutrition education including development of appropriate resources

• In a school setting, ensure that mealtime atmosphere is conducive to socialization and development



Who Creates Jobs for Nutrition Consultants?

Nutrition consultants are employed on a part-time, full-time or contractual basis by organizations in private practice or public practice. They may work independently or in conjunction with other professionals such as doctors, chiropractors, acupuncturists, physical and mental health therapists, researchers, program managers, marketing managers, and many other professionals.


Types of Organizations that Employ Nutrition Consultants


• Hospitals, long-term care facilities and home care programs

• Clinics and community health centres

• Social service agencies

• Correctional services

• Food service and catering companies

• Food manufacturing and marketing companies

• Animal feed manufacturing and marketing companies

• Pharmaceutical and supplement companies

• Schools, colleges and universities

• Municipal, regional and federal government agencies

• The Armed Forces

• Non-profit and community organizations

• Public and private research facilities

• Fitness centres





Nutrition Consultant Salary

The salary level of nutrition consultants can vary depending on their level of education, their level of experience, the size and type of their employer, the specific responsibilities of their job, and many other factors.


Nutrition Consultant Salary Alberta: According to the 2013 Alberta Wage and Salary Survey, Albertans working in the Dietitians and Nutritionists occupational group earn an average wage of $43.19 per hour.


Nutrition Consultant Salary Canada: According to Service Canada, Canadian workers in the Dietitians and Nutritionists occupational group earn an average salary of $48,610 per year.


Nutrition Consultant United States: According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary level of American workers in the Dietitians and Nutritionists occupational group is $55,240 per year.



Characteristics Needed to Become a Nutrition Consultant

In order to enjoy performing the duties of a nutrition consultant, you need to have certain traits. Taking enjoyment from your duties as a nutrition consultant is important, as it helps you maintain a positive attitude towards your work, which usually leads to having a long and successful career.


• You have a keen interest in science, food and nutrition

• You are willing to keep up to date with the latest nutrition research

• You have an interest in helping people, animals and communities

• You enjoy consulting with and advising other professionals

• You have a results-oriented approach to work activities

• You have an honest, ethical and caring personality

• You take enjoyment from analyzing information



Skills Needed to Become a Nutrition Consultant

In order to become effective in a career as a nutrition consultant, and perform your job duties with competence, you need to posses a certain set of skills, including:


• Data analysis and management skills

• Able to prepare and present thorough reports

• Specialized knowledge in the field in which the employer operates

• Program coordination or project management skills

• Being fluent in a second language is usually considered an asset

• Proficient with MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint

• Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to communicate with internal and external stakeholders at all levels



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Careers Similar to Nutrition Consultant

Listed below are careers in our database that are similar in nature to Nutrition Consultant, as they may involve many of the same skills, competencies and responsibilities.



Fitness Consultant

Home Economist


Public Health Inspector



References: Nutrition Consultant Career Information

Please consult the references below to find more information on the various aspects of a career as a nutrition consultant.



Wages & Salaries in Alberta:Dietitians & Nutritionists.” (n.d.). ALIS website - Alberta Learning Information Service. Retrieved January 5, 2020.

Healthcare:Dietitians and Nutritionists.” (September 10, 2019). Occupational Outlook Handbook - United States Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Retrieved January 5, 2020.

Get Certified:AANC Certification.” (n.d.). American Association of Nutrition Consultants website. Retrieved January 5, 2020.

Consulting Jobs:Fitness & Nutritional Consultant.” Lindsey Thompson (n.d.). Houston Chronicle website. Retrieved January 5, 2020.



Scholarships for Becoming a Nutrition Consultant

Scholarships listed for majors that apply to becoming a Nutrition Consultant can be found on our Nutrition Scholarships and Human Ecology Scholarships pages.


Success Tip: Be sure to apply for any scholarships that you even barely qualify for, as there are millions of dollars of scholarships that go unused every year due to a lack of applicants!



Becoming a Nutrition Consultant: Applicable Majors

Studying one of the university majors listed below is an excellent starting point to becoming a nutrition consultant. Click on the links to find out what else you can do with these majors!


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