Nutrition counselors are knowledgeable advisors who provide support and guidance as you set nutritional and dietary goals, and pathways to fulfill those goals. Many of us have forgotten the simple equation of eating well and clean and the numerous health benefits it ensures. Nutrition counselors serve as champions to help you navigate the world of contradictory nutrition advice and assist you to determine what adjustments are necessary for you to reach your optimal dietary lifestyle, which ultimately brings you energy and balance, in both mind and body. Having a nutrition counselor offers you ongoing support and coaching as you put into action new dietary habits and pave new roads to wellness. Many people know what they need to do to improve their health through nutrition, but when it comes to putting it into action, they are lost.
Ultimately, you are responsible for what you put on your plate and into your body each day, so get interested! Simply having a genuine interest in health through nutrition, and the desire to develop the habits you need, is the first step on the path to vibrant health. No one else can really do this for you!
Deciding to hire a nutrition counselor, means that you have decided to make time in your life to focus on your health and diet. Honor this time, just as you would honor time for an important work meeting, time for a friend or family member or an important event in your life or anything in your life that you cherish. Your nutrition counseling program will only last a few months, but you are cultivating lasting changes that you will take with you, so begin to consider this element of your life, just as important as other things, and soon they will become an effortless part of everyday life. It’s a lifestyle!
Before deciding on a nutrition counselor, check their credentials and understand their approach. You want to make sure that the nutrition counselor you choose is aligned with your values around health and food, and your goals. For example, if you are looking to adapt a more plant-based diet, then you would not choose a nutritionist that specializes in the Paleo diet. Navigating new dietary and nutritional habits is very personal, so you also want to be comfortable with the person who is supporting you on this journey. Interview a few and go with the one that you feel will most successfully support you in reaching your nutrition goals.
Nutrition is presented by the media and advertisements to promise us quick fixes through dietary supplements, fast-track programs and wonder foods. Of course, any process of improvement takes time and progression. One of the benefits of having a nutrition counselor, is that they are there for you during the process, which includes the challenging times. It is usually during a relapse that people will quit a program and feel disheartened. Going to a nutrition counselor one or two times, may give you some useful information, but allow yourself to follow through with a program series, which is usually between 5 – 12 sessions, so you can really develop some lasting changes and new habits under the supervision and care of your nutrition counselor. It’s wonderful to have such a presence in your life!
Often when you adjust even just a few things in your diet, ailments heal and you feel amazing. And many people do come off prescription medications when they make these key adjustments to their diet. This of course is wonderful, but it is important not to disregard any medical care that you are receiving. Nutrition counseling can be a great accompaniment to the medical treatment you may be receiving for a particular ailment. In fact, your doctor may suggest that you see a nutritionist. All in all, be wise and before discontinuing any treatment, check with your medical practitioner.
Have you noticed how many nutrition and diet fads are out there? Don’t fall for them! You may hear of one diet working one week, and the next week it has been proven otherwise or there is a new trend. The abc’s of eating well have not changed much over time, and this is because they work! Be open to being a clean slate when you start your nutrition program, and allow your counselor to guide you back to simplicity. Be flexible! If you come in with a list of diets you want to try, it will be hard to launch a program that is customized just for you. You may have a friend that was successful in one approach, but that doesn’t mean it is right for your body.
Your nutrition counselor will support you in reaching your dietary and nutrition goals. Many of us set our goals too high and too big and they are unattainable. Then we are left disappointed and frustrated. Set goals that will stretch your limits but are also doable. If you set a goal to be a raw vegan and loose 25 pounds in a month, you will not be happy! Setting attainable goals will allow you to get the most out of your nutrition counseling sessions.
A nutrition counselor is there to listen, in fact, they are more trained in listening than many practitioners, and probably, most people in your life. Take advantage of this great opportunity during your time with your nutrition counselor, and don’t be afraid to speak up. Your nutrition counselor is there to coach you, as you make the adjustments and changes you need to cultivate a life of wellness. They will certainly ask you questions about the process, so take these as your cues to express what is working or what is not working, so they can best serve you. If there is a recommendation that you feel you absolutely cannot do or try, let them know. And, if something is working well and you love it, talk about that too! We don’t want to set ourselves up to feel uncomfortable or blocked in anyway during nutrition counseling. Truly, get everything out on the table!
Once you embark on a nutrition counseling program, you will discover how food is related to so many elements of your life and the challenges have just as much to do with lifestyle as they do with food choices. You will touch on issues of time management, planning, relationships and stress. Food interfaces with so many areas of our lives which greatly affect our eating habits and nutritional health. A nutrition counselor will support you in developing an uplifting and healthy relationship with food, which opens doors to avenues of health in all areas of our lives. Get your eating in order, and see how many other things in your life fall into place!
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