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
  • a specialist course run by a professional body


Examples of courses that will allow you to practise as a nutrional therapist are:

  • BSc (Hons) in nutritional therapy (five years, part time)
  • BSc (Hons) in nutritional science (three years, full time)
  • PgDip or MSc in Nutritional Therapy (if you already have a degree level qualification)

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels for a degree
  • a degree in any subject for a postgraduate course

Other routes

You could do the Diploma in Nutritional Therapy run by the Institute of Optimum Nutrition. Entry requirements for this are similar to what you need for a university degree, for example 2 or 3 A levels or equivalent qualifications. 

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. You'll need to be prepared to market your business, which may mean working long hours at first until you have established your practice.

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 this area from:

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
  • Being able to use a computer terminal or hand-held device may be beneficial for this job.

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.

Training 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

D&T Food Science and Nutrition

  • Start date: 01 September 2019
  • Location: CHELTENHAM

WJEC Level 3 Diploma in Food Science and Nutrition

  • Provider: Brine Leas School
  • Start date: 01 September 2019
  • Location: Nantwich

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