Nutritional therapist

Nutritional therapists help people by giving advice on diet and nutrition.

Average salary (a year)


Typical hours (a week)

37 to 39 variable

You could work

freelance / self-employed managing your own hours

How to become a nutritional therapist

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course


You'll need to get a qualification that is recognised by one of the professional organisations for nutritional therapy.

The Nutritional Therapy Education Commission (NTEC) accredit courses in nutritional therapy. Graduates are eligible to apply for direct entry to the professional register held by the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council.

You should check how the course is delivered and how much of the course involves clinical placements.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree

More information

More information


Career tips

Your prospects will be greatest as a self-employed therapist. To be successful you need to build up and maintain a sound reputation and client base which may mean working long hours at first.

Networking and training in other therapies may help to increase the number of clients that you see.

Further information

You can find more about careers in nutritional therapy from the  British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine and the Naturopathic Nutrition Association.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • active listening skills
  • customer service skills
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • knowledge of biology
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with others
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

These will involve:

  • taking a detailed medical history
  • conducting tests using hair samples and allergy testing
  • encouraging clients to understand the link between diet and their own future health

You’ll then give advice on:

  • which foods to remove or increase from their diet
  • whether to take vitamin or mineral supplements
  • lifestyle changes they should make

Working environment

You could work at a client's home, at a GP practice or in a therapy clinic.

Career path and progression

With experience you could move into teaching or research.

Current opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a nutritional therapist right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Certificate in Food Science and Nutrition

  • Provider: Bishop Heber High School
  • Start date: 01 September 2020
  • Location: Malpas

Level 3 Diploma in Food Science and Nutrition

  • Provider: Chosen Hill School
  • Start date: 01 September 2020
  • Location: Gloucester

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