What is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist?
First I want to start off by explaining the difference between nutritionists. Each type of nutritionist out there comes with a different degree of education. It's important to note that the term "Holistic Nutritionist" is unregulated. This means that really anyone can call themselves that. This is why it's really crucial you understand exactly who you are getting your nutritional advice from and what (if any) education they have under their belt.
I am certified as a Registered Holistic Nutritionist after I graduated from the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. This is one of two schools in Vancouver that certifies graduates with a Diploma of Natural Nutrition. ONLY graduates from CSNN are allowed to use the designation of Registered Holistic Nutritionist. Other designations you may come across include Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant (CHNC) or Certified Holistic Nutrition Practitioner (CHNP). These designations are used by both graduates of CSNN and the Institute of Holistic Nutrition depending on their province of practice. To complete the program at CSNN you must finish your studies, complete case studies, write and pass a board exam. This takes 1-2 years depending on your frequency of classes. Once you pass the board exam you are registered with the CSNN Alumni Association.
As a Registered Holistic Nutritionist I follow a code of ethics and scope of practice. I use evidence and science based tools to help my clients overcome health concerns and achieve their health goals. Like most holistic practitioners I look at my clients as a whole. I believe the body-mind-spirit are all connected and this is why a holistic nutritionist should never just talk to you about the food on your plate. I take into account your sleep, stress levels, diet, exercise and lifestyle habits. Since each person has a unique bio-chemistry, each person has unique nutritional requirements. During our initial consultation we will dive deep into the root cause of your concerns to identify nutritional imbalances and I work my recommendations based on that. Many RHN's and CHNP's also work in a preventative manner rather than trying to work backwards. Many Extended Benefits are now covering Registered Holistic Nutritionists, especially if you have a health spending account. You can find out more by contacting your insurance company directly and asking if they cover "nutritional counselling". Following my scope of practice, I refer out when I believe you need more specialized treatment or testing. For example, it is out of my scope to provide you with a formal diagnoses.
A Registered Dietician is a regulated profession. Most RD's are graduates of a University Nutrition Program with a Bachelor of Science degree in Food, Nutrition and Health. Many RD's use the Canada food guide as a base on their food recommendations and often see patients who are greatly suffering with health issues. Many work in hospital settings. Because they are a regulated health profession they are often covered by almost all Extended Benefits.
If you are getting your nutritional advice from someone who has not graduated from a recognized institute, I would ask yourself if they are really benefiting you as an individual.
How can I help you?
My practice specializes in women's health, specifically around building families, but I do see other health concerns as well. Often this is digestive concerns or type 2 diabetes management. Because many of my clients have seen me through infertility, pregnancy and postpartum, naturally I see their children through food introductions as well. These are just a few of the common concerns I see:
Blood sugar imbalances
Stress and Sleep issues
(in)fertility and miscarriage
Prenatal nutrition optimization
As a Registered Holistic Nutritionist it is my job to evaluate your symptoms that indicate imbalances and provide recommendations that are tailored to your specific needs. These recommendations often include nutrient-dense whole foods, lifestyle and natural supplements to bring you back into a state of equilibrium. I often provide meal plans and recipes as well as teach you how to read labels and navigate the mountain of nutrition information out there. Proper nutrition is key to living a long and balanced life.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out! I look forward to working with you and helping you reach your health goals.