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Nutritional therapist

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

Annual Salary

variable

Average UK salary in 2019 was £30,378
(source Office for National Statistics)

Working hours

37 to 39 variable

You could work: freelance / self-employed; managing your own hours

6%
Future employment

There will be 6% more Nutritional therapist jobs in 2026.
In your local area

Day to day tasks

As part of this role, you could:

  • take a detailed client case history focusing on diet and lifestyle
  • decide on which tests to carry out in the lab
  • encourage clients to understand the impact of diet and lifestyle on health
  • analyse and report back test results and agree on a nutritional plan
  • monitor a client's progress over a period of time
  • create and update confidential case notes
  • refer clients on to other healthcare services when necessary

Working environment

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

You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
University

You'll improve your employment prospects if you 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.

Courses are available at undergraduate degree, postgraduate diploma and Master's level.

You should make sure that you are satisfied that courses have a good reputation and you understand how they will be taught. It's also important to find out how much clinical experience you will gain as this may vary.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • 2 to 3 A levels, or equivalent, for a degree
  • a degree in a relevant subject for postgraduate study
For 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.

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You could specialise in working with people with specific medical conditions like arthritis or chronic fatigue.

You could grow your business and supervise or manage other staff.

With experience you could move into teaching, writing content on nutritional therapy or doing research.

Skills required and how your skills match up

What skills are required?

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
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
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