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How to Find a Steady Stream of Clients as a Functional Nutrition Counselor - Blog Image

How to Find a Steady Stream of Clients as a Functional Nutrition Counselor

BY: Andrea Nakayama

DATE: 2018-05-22

One of the most common questions I get from newly trained Functional Nutrition Counselors is: “How can I create a steady stream of new clients?” It’s a great question. And a necessary one, because you cannot make enough of an impact (and make a good living!) if you don’t have enough clients.

The good news is that there is a way to find a huge population of people who need your help. And it has nothing to do with becoming an internet personality on Instagram, Tiktok or Facebook. I promise.

The key lies in the answers to 2 questions:

  1. Who is already looking for a Functional Nutrition Counselor?

  2. What do these people need that’s different from 80% of the population?

    And how do you deliver it to them?

1. The clients who are looking for a Functional Nutrition Counselor.

Let me start by stating something that might sound obvious: The people who aren’t looking for your help are the people who’ve already found a solution. This may sound ridiculously simplistic, but it’s not. Bear with me.

There is a portion of the population (roughly 80%) that can look up their ailment on Google, find a remedy or a boxed solution, and presto, they feel better — or better “enough”. Those people might need someone to help them stick to their new diet, make meal plans, or connect them with like-minded people who are looking to get on the healthy train. You can undoubtedly do that work, but there’s more you can do too. And it’s when you step into that ‘more’ that you can make the impact and the living you’re seeking.

If you’re keen on working with people who finally want to feel better, on helping people resolve the health challenges that Google cannot solve, and on changing the way we do healthcare by elevating the status of “food as medicine” to take its rightful place as a valued aspect of clinical intervention, then chances are that the 80% that I’m referring to aren’t looking for you, the Functional Nutrition Counselor.

This is what I’ve named the 80/20 rule for practitioners. And trying to speak to that 80% with your passion, knowledge, and conviction can be frustrating. But wait…

There are billions of people who do need your help! The people who are looking for you are the ones who cannot be served by Dr. Google, or Beachbody, or green smoothies and coconut oil alone. They need someone who knows how to look beyond the X for Y Paradigm and quick-fixes, and instead dig for root causes and sustainable solutions. That population is growing every day, and they need you. In fact, there aren’t enough practitioners to serve the people who are (sometimes desperately) searching for relief. So thank you for your conviction and commitment!

2. The unique needs of your potential clients

So what do these particular people need that’s different from 80% of the population? The people who are looking to work with a Functional Nutrition Counselor need more clinical attention than most. They need more than coaching. More than accountability. More than supplements or dietary approaches. And more than lab tests alone.

They need an entirely new paradigm. And maybe, in order to serve this population, you do too. The paradigm most of the world operates in works for the 80% that don’t need your help. But that paradigm doesn’t work for those who need your specialized expertise. The people that need your help require the Functional Paradigm. A paradigm that looks for root causes instead of a diagnosis alone, and fosters a therapeutic  partnership with both clients and fellow practitioners.

Embracing a functional paradigm

As a Functional Medicine Nutritionist and educator of thousands of Functional Nutrition Counselors, I’ve dedicated my life to teaching practitioners the science and art of Functional Nutrition. Physiology is riveting, as is biochemistry, but the community of like-minded practitioners — doing the work to embrace and practice in a new paradigm that works — might be the greatest part of it all. Functional Nutrition Alliance has become the home for thousands of committed and purposeful practitioners. They come together in my signature training program – Full Body Systems – to learn what it takes to bring resolution to even the most complex cases, help clients out of suffering, and make their mark in healthcare.

And that steady stream of clients you need in order to make an impact and a living? Both come naturally out of the Functional Paradigm — it just works.

Related Blog Posts

the 80/20 rule for nutrition practitioners
Fx Nutrition Tip – ditch the X for Y paradigm
What’s Functional and what’s not Part 1

Andrea Nakayama

By: Andrea Nakayama, FxNA Founder & Functional Medicine Nutritionist

Functional Nutrition Alliance provides the comprehensive online Functional Nutrition training in the Science & Art of the Functional Nutrition practice. Learn to address the roots of your clients’ suffering with client education, diet & lifestyle modifications.


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