One of the biggest challenges most nutrition coaches face is helping clients stick to nutritional plans. It can be tough to make lasting changes to someone’s diet, especially if they have been eating a certain way for a long time. Here are some things you can do to increase their compliance to the work necessary to accomplish their goals.
First, it’s important to make sure that your clients understand the reason behind the importance of their plan.
Help them see how the plan will benefit them in the long run, whether it’s weight loss, improved energy levels, or better overall health. You can also inform your clients of the negative consequences should they not follow their plan, such as weight gain or an increased risk of health problems. Taking the time to explain why relevant items are important and what to look for can increase their buy-in and likelihood of steering their own programs.
Another key to increasing compliance is to make the nutritional plan as easy as possible for your clients to follow. This means giving them clear and simple instructions. Depending on their communication style, we generally recommend giving them enough strategies and tactics to help execute their plan. An example of this may be as simple as discussing a protein nutrient recommendation and translating the numerical recommendation into a recognizable food and portion. Keeping foods recognizable and familiar will help people establish a more mentally healthy relationship with their food.
Another helpful tip is to teach your clients to track progress while you monitor the outcome. This can be as simple as having them write down what they eat each day or using a tracking app on their phone. We encourage you to identify 3-5 of the most important measures of success for your clients and regularly assess their changes. Seeing their progress can be a great motivator and help them stay on track. It also serves to help coaches best refine the best process of your clients. Offering support and encouragement along the way, such as checking in with them regularly or providing tips and resources can also help keep them on track!
Finally, be sure to address any issues or challenges your clients may be facing that could be hindering their compliance using a regular communication loop. Some potential obstacles include anything from a lack of time to prepare healthy meals to a lack of support from their family. Addressing these roadblocks as they come up can help your clients overcome any obstacles and maintain momentum.
Ultimately increasing client compliance with a nutritional plan takes time and effort. But by helping your clients understand the importance of the plan, making it easy to follow, encouraging progress tracking, and addressing any challenges, you can increase the chances of your clients sticking to their plan and achieving their health goals.
Hope this helps!
NCI VP of Education
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