Nutrition Certifications

Whether your interest is in holistic nutrition, nutrition coaching, optimizing diets for sports, or weight management, AFPA has a curriculum for you.

Become a nutrition professional online in 6 months or less

Become a Nutrition Professional

With the increased awareness of the importance of healthy eating and the rising incidence of metabolic disease, the demand for nutrition professionals is at an all-time high. The nutrition industry is growing faster than ever before. The projected growth for this industry is expected to increase 15% over the next 8 years, which is much faster than average. Learn how you can promote health and prevent disease through nutrient optimization with our online nutrition certification programs.


What You Will Learn

How to Teach Healthy Eating Habits

From weight management to peak fitness performance, clients need to be educated on the most optimal nutrition regimen for their needs. Discover the most effective ways to teach your clients how to achieve a healthy lifestyle with research-based nutritional advice.

Strategic Counseling and Goal Setting

Getting clients the results they’re looking for requires effective communication and proven goal setting methods. You’ll learn the tried-and-true approaches so the nutrition plans you assign are completed fully and client goals are achieved.

Dispel False Nutritional Beliefs

Discover our proven procedure for distinguishing what information is right and wrong. You’ll learn how to spot unreliable nutrition knowledge while educating clients on the correct way to approach dietary changes, no matter what age or demographic.

Key Benefits

Learn the Best Counseling Practices

Our accredited nutrition certification programs will show you the most effective way to counsel clients into making proper food and lifestyle choices. Implementing our counseling approach will give you the ability to guide others into making the right nutritional changes supported by scientific research and evidence.

Modular Nutrition Certifications

Each AFPA nutrition certification program has a modular design, giving you the ability to sign up for further knowledge in the specific nutritional field you want to learn more about. Our curriculum is structured to help you dive deeper into the subject you want to specialize in so you can give the best advice possible.

Valuable Business Resources

Once you’re certified, you can choose to be your own boss and start your own practice. We have the resources to help you get started. If you decide on the entrepreneurial route, AFPA provides several business resources and guidance to help you establish a successful nutrition consulting business along with specialized credentials to increase your client base right away.

Not sure if coaching is the right path for you? Hear what our graduates have to say.

The way my life has changed after getting the certification is like a complete 180, honestly. I definitely could not have counseled people the way I do now without AFPA. I was surprised the most when I just realized really how much I was learning. I knew I was going to learn a lot, and that there were so many different curriculum topics, but at the end of it, I learned even so much more than I expected.”

Candace Bell, AFPA Holistic Nutritionist

Working with an accredited organization like AFPA has been really beneficial for me. It gives me a leg up on my colleagues because they might know a lot about nutrition, but don’t have the certification behind that. When you’re actually certified, it opens up a lot of doors and opportunities. Once I became certified with AFPA, I was pretty much immediately hired, which helped me get my name out there.”

Allison Wells, AFPA Nutrition & Wellness Consultant

AFPA instantly gives you credibility and is super well respected in the industry. Clients know that if you have that certification, that they’re getting credible, reliable information. I also chose AFPA because of the course structure. With the courses, you get to make your own schedule and it’s perfect for anyone who may have another job, is going to school, or has a family.”

Brett Bennett, AFPA Master Nutrition Consultant

Our Accreditations

AFPA is recognized and fully meets the American Association of Drugless Practitioners (AADP) education requirements, providing students with the most comprehensive education to gain eligibility to also become a Board Certified Nutrition Professional.

Our Holistic Nutrition, Nutrition & Wellness Consultant and Masters Nutrition courses are all American Naturopathic Medical Accreditation Board (ANMAB) approved, which makes our graduates eligible to become board certified Holistic Health Care Practitioners through ANMAB.

AFPA is an approved CEU provider for NANP, NASM, AFAA and others. Completing one of our nutrition certification programs could earn you valuable CEUs to renew existing credentials with other organizations.

AFPA is a recognized coaching organizational member of the Association of Coach Training Organizations (ACTO).

AFPA is an International Institute of Complementary Therapists (IICT) Approved Training Provider for the modality Holistic Health Coach in Australia, NZ, South Africa and the UK/EU.

AFPA is an approved school with the Canadian Association for Integrative Nutrition. We’ve also received CEC Accreditation with CANFITPRO.

Nutrition Certifications FAQ

What is a Certified Holistic Nutritionist? Answer

A Certified Holistic Nutritionist is someone who can understand a client’s nutritional status and provide information about how a holistic nutrition approach can support them in strengthening all dimensions of wellness. The dimensions of wellness include physical, emotional, occupational, interpersonal, intellectual, spiritual, and cultural wellness.

Simply put, a Certified Holistic Nutritionist helps people implement nutritional strategies to make their lives better.

Certified Holistic Nutritionists are an integral part of the overall healthcare system; they offer supplemental care that helps fill in the gaps in traditional care.

While they cannot diagnose disease, they can meet someone where they’re at—whether someone has a disease, feels generally unwell, or is looking to add preventative measures—and help them make health behavior changes.

What are the requirements to enroll in any of your nutrition certification programs? Answer

To qualify for any of our nutrition certification programs, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Have a solid understanding of the English language

For our Gut Health Nutrition Specialist program and Autoimmune Holistic Nutrition Certification, we also recommend (but do not require) that you:

  • Hold at least one current certificate in a health, wellness, nutrition, or fitness discipline (OR) have an undergraduate degree in a health or science discipline
  • Have knowledge of health and wellness coaching strategies and practices

How soon can I start my nutrition certification course? Answer

We have open enrollment, so you may enroll whenever you are ready.

What happens after I enroll in my nutrition certification course? Answer

Shortly after you enroll, you will receive access to the online learning platform where you can begin your program whenever you are ready.

If your course includes textbooks:

If you complete an order during regular office hours (Monday-Friday 8 a.m.- 5 p.m. EST), we will process and issue your course ebook codes via email within 24 hours. If you complete your order outside of our regular office hours or on a federal holiday, please give us until the following business day to send your ebook codes.

Can I complete one of your nutrition certification programs while working a full-time job or balancing family responsibilities? Answer

Many of our students complete the program while holding down full-time jobs or balancing other responsibilities, like being a stay-at-home parent. Our flexible programs allow you to move at your own pace over the course of 6 months and create a study plan that works with your unique schedule.

Once certified, some of our graduates chose to build a part-time nutrition business that allows them to also work another job, raise a family, etc.

Do you offer payment plans? Answer

AFPA accepts AFFIRM for financing your enrollment.

When you pay with AFFIRM:

  • Pick the loan that fits your budget, over 3, 6, or 12 months.
  • Instant approval. Safe & secure.
  • Security of your personal information is the top priority.
  • Payment reminders are sent via email and text.
  • At checkout, select AFFIRM as your payment source for instant approval.

Do I need to complete continuing education to maintain my certification? Answer

Yes, you will need to complete at least 16 continuing education credits (CECs) every two years to maintain your certification. Learn more about renewing your certification.

How do I start a career in holistic nutrition? Answer

In our free guide, Holistic Nutritionist Program Guide, you’ll learn how to turn your passion for health and nutrition into a profession with a holistic nutritionist certification

How can I find clients as a certified nutrition professional? Answer

We have created this free guide, The Nutrition Consultant’s Guide to Finding and Winning Clients, for you to learn how to build a solid client base so that you can do the work you love. This guide covers everything from selecting the right client niche to creating a website that attracts clients.

What are the employment opportunities for a Certified Holistic Nutritionist? Answer

Holistic nutritionists usually work as consultants, either in an integrated clinic or as solo practitioners, and/or have their own independent business or online consultation business. They may also work in school or corporate settings. Some holistic nutritionists choose to specialize in areas such as holistic sports nutrition, home nutrition or family nutrition therapy. Other careers in holistic nutrition include research, teaching and working for a supplement manufacturer or whole foods company. Writing nutrition guides or working as a chef are other career possibilities.

How much does a nutrition professional earn? Answer

Nutritionists earned a median annual salary of nearly $62,000 in May 2021, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience, and a variety of other factors. Your earning potential throughout your career will depend partially on variables like where you live, what services you provide, if you cater to a particular niche of clientele, and your area of expertise. In addition to these factors, your earning potential will also depend on your ability to work hard and to market yourself in your field, as well as your ability to network in your community and online. Consider building your base of clients with those who know and trust you enough to refer you to friends and family. Additionally, the nation’s health concerns and growing awareness of the importance of healthy eating will continue to boost earning potential for professionals in the nutrition field.

What’s the difference between a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and a Registered Dietitian? Answer

Certified Holistic Nutritionists provide clients with information about how a holistic nutrition approach can support them in strengthening all dimensions of wellness (physical, emotional, occupational, interpersonal, intellectual, spiritual, and cultural wellness).

Registered Dietitians are professionals who completed a four-year college degree with specific coursework in nutrition and passed the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

The word “nutritionist” is less regulated, and four-year college degrees are not necessarily required to use the term.

What’s the difference between a nutritionist and a health coach? Answer

Both health coaches and holistic nutritionists play essential roles in supporting individuals’ health and well-being, but there are notable differences in their focus and approaches.

A holistic nutritionist specializes in the field of holistic nutrition, which emphasizes the interconnection of various aspects of wellness, including physical, emotional, occupational, interpersonal, intellectual, spiritual, and cultural wellness. Holistic nutritionists primarily focus on the power of nutrition and its impact on overall health. They are trained in understanding the relationship between food, nutrients, and the human body. With their knowledge of holistic nutrition principles, they provide clients with personalized guidance and strategies to optimize their health and well-being through a balanced and wholesome diet.

On the other hand, a health coach takes a more comprehensive approach to wellness. While nutrition is an essential component of their work, health coaches often address a broader range of lifestyle factors that contribute to overall health. They consider aspects such as stress management, exercise, sleep, relationships, and personal development. Health coaches aim to empower individuals to make positive changes in various areas of their lives and support them in achieving their overall wellness goals.

While holistic nutritionists focus primarily on nutrition and its impact on health, health coaches use their coaching skills to address multiple dimensions of well-being. Ultimately, both professionals can make a positive impact on individuals’ health.

Read our full blog on the difference between a nutritionist and health coach.

What is the difference between the Health and Wellness Coach and Nutrition & Wellness Consultant certification courses? Answer

The Health & Wellness Coach (HWC) certification programs focuses on the processes of coaching, how to be an effective coach and how to elicit behavior change from your clients. This program focuses on how health is not specifically dependent on diet and exercise, but also dependent on supportive relationships, meaningful work, work/life balance, spirituality and more. HWC also looks at many areas of a client’s life that may be contributing to stress and poor health, instead of diet and exercise alone. Nutrition is not the focus on the HWC program as it is in the NWC program. Learn more about the Health and Wellness Coach Certification program.

The Nutrition and Wellness Consultant (NWC) certification program focuses on how to elicit dietary changes from your client. Nutritional wellness consultants are professionals who use their knowledge of nutrition and human physiology to improve the physical well-being of their clients by improving their diets. The course focuses on individual characteristics of clients to devise food-based strategies that can enhance their life.  You will learn how to analyze eating habits and behaviors, look at a person’s physical health and makes suggestions based on your findings. Learn more about the Nutrition and Wellness Consultant Certification program. 

The NWC and HWC certification programs have the importance of nutrition and exercise in common. The NWC is much more rigorous in the Nutrition learning component. In addition, coaching and consulting are somewhat different.

As a Nutrition and Wellness Consultant, you are asking guiding questioning, giving advice, and co-creating to help solve problems. Consulting is unlike coaching because with pure coaching, the answers come from the client.

As a Health and Wellness Coach, you are supporting someone to uncover their internal obstacles and to learn how to manage them. Coaches partner with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential. The coach is the subject matter expert at coaching, not necessarily the subject matter expert of the client’s coaching topic, e.g., nutrition, exercise.

Are there any restrictions in my state regarding what I can do as a certified holistic nutrition professional? Answer

The laws around certified wellness practitioners can be confusing, especially because they differ from state to state. Check out this guide to help you better understand those laws, the different types, and how they impact your ability to practice. To learn more about the laws impacting you, browse by state here.

What can you tell me about the Master Nutrition Consultant certification program? Answer

We have created a program guide specially directed at answering questions about our most comprehensive nutrition program yet. Check out the Master Level Nutrition Consultant Program Guide to see if this program is right for you.

AFPA Certified Holistic Nutritionist Program Guide


Certified Holistic Nutritionist Program Guide

The demand for nutritional professionals is growing as people increasingly prioritize health. Download our official Certified Holistic Nutritionist Program Guide to learn more about the benefits of pursuing a career as a nutritionist.