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ISSA Vitamin Certification Evaluation (2023)

Having already earned my CPR/AED and CPT certifications by the Worldwide Sports activities Sciences Affiliation (ISSA), I used to be desperate to discover different choices that would improve my skills and income-earning alternatives as a health skilled. As I expanded my consumer base at YouFit, the place I began working as a private coach shortly after getting my certification, I rapidly realized that few understood the fundamentals of diet. In truth, it was evident that many individuals want extra assist with determining the right way to gas their our bodies reasonably than the right way to transfer them.

I took benefit of the partnership between ISSA and YouFit and scored a reduced charge on a specialization course: the nutritionist certification course. This certification course allowed me to realize an in-depth understanding of the right way to put collectively an efficient diet program. Ripe with useful assets like video lectures, downloadable consumer varieties, and direct entry to ISSA’s resident diet professional, the course incorporates all of the instruments you must not solely go the ultimate examination, but in addition grow to be a extra assured and succesful well being and health coach.

This ISSA diet certification evaluation gives a complete breakdown of the course supplies — together with the Health Vitamin textbook and chapter quizzes — and covers different key elements so you’ll be able to determine whether or not to make the leap and buy the course. (Trace: It’s effectively price it.)

Key Takeaways

  • For about $650, the ISSA diet certification course is a smart funding for private trainers and well being coaches who wish to develop their enterprise by providing a helpful service to each present and potential purchasers.
  • Apart from going in-depth on scientific matters like macronutrients, micronutrients, metabolism, digestion, and hydration, this diet program additionally addresses vital areas like habits change, objective setting, and motivation — all of which contribute to a consumer’s success.
  • Whereas the ultimate examination incorporates 100 multiple-choice questions and a six-part essay portion, it’s an open-book check. You should not have any bother assembly the 70 % threshold to go, particularly if you happen to make the most of the examine supplies and carry out effectively on the chapter quizzes.

ISSA Nutritionist Certification

ISSA Nutritionist Certification


  • Price: Begins at round $53.27 monthly
  • Course size: 10 weeks or fewer
  • Examine supplies: Digital textbook, video lectures, quizzes, Vitamin Bootcamp
  • Minimal passing rating on closing examination: 70 %

Test Worth

What’s the ISSA Vitamin Certification?

Certainly one of many specializations out there by ISSA, their diet certification course is an effective way to get a leg up on the competitors and assist your purchasers crush their objectives sooner. For licensed private trainers like me who wish to present the very best science-backed steering on the right way to keep correctly fueled, it’s arduous to go improper with a program like this. It permits you to work at your personal tempo as you find out about every little thing from figuring out a consumer’s preferrred macronutrient consumption to assembling a well-rounded complement stack to constructing a diet teaching enterprise.

A young man setting in a gym holding his ISSA Nutritionist certificate
Holding my ISSA Nutritionist certificates

Alongside the best way, your data will likely be examined with chapter quizzes to see your progress. Pairing the Health Vitamin textbook with video lectures gives a stable basis for studying that you would be able to construct upon additional with the assistance of a devoted Success Coach who you’ll be able to entry by way of electronic mail or by calling the ISSA assist line throughout enterprise hours. Though I didn’t reap the benefits of this useful resource, having it out there actually qualifies as a plus for this diet program, particularly if you happen to wrestle with among the extra science-heavy topics.

By the point you full the course and go the ultimate examination, you can be empowered to offer your dietary experience to purchasers who wish to lose fats, acquire muscle, or just enhance their total well being and wellness. In any case, acquiring your cert from a company that earned accreditation from each the Nationwide Fee for Certifying Businesses (NCCA) and the Distance Training and Coaching Council (DETC) provides validity and added worth to you and your rising enterprise.

RELATED: Methods to Grow to be a Private Coach

ISSA Vitamin Certification Course Highlights

Registering for the ISSA Nutritionist course is step one in turning into a more practical licensed private coach and life-style coach. You’ll instantly acquire entry to a guided examine program that features the net model of the Health Vitamin textbook, practically 20 video lectures, and devoted chapter quizzes designed to arrange you for the ultimate examination. This system is supposed to be accomplished in 10 weeks, however as a result of you’ll be able to full the course at your personal tempo, you could possibly receive your diet certification even sooner.

As you make your means by the course, you’ll acquire an in-depth understanding of every little thing from power techniques to fad diets to widespread vitamin deficiencies. Though the breadth of knowledge may appear overwhelming at instances, relaxation assured that you can be a superior coach by spending the time, cash, and power on seeing this diet program by.

When you full all of the quizzes, you’ll then be capable to take the ultimate examination, which consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and 6 essay questions. You need to earn at the least a 70 % total to earn a passing grade from ISSA. The check is untimed (it took me about two hours) and open-book, so that you shouldn’t have an excessive amount of bother hitting that mark in your first try.

General, I believed the ISSA diet certification course was price it for a number of causes. First, I acquired all of the instruments I wanted to ship high-quality programming and steering for my purchasers, together with downloadable varieties. Second, I had the choice to make the most of assets like the net scholar discussion board and Vitamin Academic Bootcamp for additional assist. Lastly, it set me up for extra monetary success sooner or later by giving me one other avenue to earn revenue as a health skilled.

Who Ought to Get the ISSA Vitamin Certification

  • Coaches who search extra in-depth data on diet than what’s offered in normal private coach certification applications.
  • Coaches who wish to get higher outcomes from present purchasers or be better-prepared to assist new purchasers attain their objectives.
  • Entrepreneurial-minded people who wish to entice extra enterprise by offering a helpful service that different trainers might not supply.
  • ISSA-certified private trainers who wish to fulfill their persevering with schooling unit (CEU) requirement and save on recertification charges.

Who Shouldn’t Get the ISSA Vitamin Certification

  • Anybody who desires to prescribe medical dietary remedy (treating medical situations with weight-reduction plan), as this doesn’t fall below the scope of observe for a diet coach.
  • Anybody who wishes to work as a registered dietician, which requires a bachelor’s diploma from an accredited supervised scientific program, passing the Fee on Dietetic Registration (CDR) closing examination, and completion of CEU necessities to keep up registration.
  • Licensed private trainers who’ve a proper schooling in sports activities diet or meals science, as they’ll probably already be conversant in a majority of the course materials content material.

RELATED: Nutritionist vs. Dietitian: What’s the Distinction Between These Vitamin Consultants?

How A lot Does the ISSA Vitamin Certification Price?

With none reductions, the ISSA diet certification sometimes prices simply north of $600. Take note, although, that the group usually affords specials all year long which will decrease that complete. You too can lower your expenses by pairing the ISSA CPT course with a specialization just like the Nutritionist course to grow to be an authorized Health Coach for lower than $1,000.

Furthermore, ISSA makes it simpler for college kids to afford their diet program by providing three cost plan choices. If you happen to reasonably not pay in full, you’ll be able to select between a six- or 12-payment setup. Not solely does that provide the flexibility to unfold out the whole price, nevertheless it additionally comes with the advantage of being interest-free.

ISSA Vitamin Certification Course Supplies

Registering for this self-paced course provides you entry to a wealth of examine information supplies and different helpful assets you’ll be able to even use after you earn your nutritionist certificates.

From video lectures that additional clarify among the matters lined within the on-line textbook to quizzes that reinforce key ideas and assist put together you for the ultimate examination, let’s check out what ISSA gives college students:

Health Vitamin Textbook

That includes contributions from 9 people — together with Daniel Gastelu, ISSA Professor & Director of Dietary Sciences, and Adam Seal, a postdoctoral researcher at California Polytechnic State College’s Division of Kinesiology and Public Well being — the Health Vitamin textbook spans 19 chapters and is sort of 500 pages lengthy. Revised in September 2022, it’s well-organized and pretty user-friendly, with loads of photos, tables, and graphs that present further context.

A young man reading a digital textbook from the ISSA Nutritionist course on his computer
Studying a digital textbook from the ISSA Nutritionist course on my laptop

Whereas the chapters differ in size, most fall between 10 and 20 pages. Every one is separated into a number of sub-topics, with some that includes as few as two (Chapter 2: Cells, Organ Programs, and Digestion) and others being damaged down into much more sections. As an illustration, the chapter on protein covers 10 matters starting from protein’s function within the physique to the way it’s digested to why athletes want it for optimum efficiency.

Here’s a full record of the chapters within the newest model of the ISSA’s Health Vitamin textbook:

  1. Vitamin
  2. Cells, Organ Programs, and Digestion
  3. Metabolism and Vitality Steadiness
  4. Carbohydrates
  5. Protein
  6. Fat
  7. Nutritional vitamins
  8. Minerals
  9. Water and Hydration
  10. The Position of the Vitamin Coach
  11. Levels of Change and Motivational Interviewing
  12. Shopper Evaluation and Objective Setting
  13. Enterprise in Vitamin Teaching
  14. Dietary Pointers
  15. Product and Complement Labels and Claims
  16. Dietary supplements
  17. Navigating Profitable and Trending Diets
  18. Particular Vitamin Situations
  19. References

As somebody who signed up for the certification course with a stable basis of the basics of diet, I nonetheless discovered the textbook to be a helpful useful resource. That being mentioned, among the earlier chapters have been fairly science-heavy and never essentially probably the most pertinent for a private coach. The chapters on cells and organ techniques and metabolism and power stability made me really feel like I had been transported straight again to highschool biology — which wasn’t precisely my cup of tea.

Nonetheless, after getting by these extra sophisticated chapters, I discovered a majority of the textbook to be straight relevant to my function as a private coach and health coach. Positive, among the info on macronutrients had some crossover from the ISSA CPT course. However the in-depth materials on micronutrients, hydration, and the psychological and enterprise facets of being a diet coach actually gave me a extra well-rounded understanding of all the facets it takes to steer a consumer in the appropriate route.

From a training perspective, I significantly appreciated the “Product and Complement Labels and Claims” chapter for offering detailed tables of the necessities wanted to make claims like “All Pure” and “Good Supply Of” on meals labels. Since most of the people is essentially unaware of those intricacies that may have a serious affect on their well being and wellness, that is precisely the kind of simply digestible info that we as licensed private trainers want to coach our purchasers on.

Video Lectures

To complement the textbook, ISSA additionally gives video lectures that spotlight key factors from advanced chapters. All through the 10-week guided examine plan, visible learners can brush up on their data by watching movies on matters like widespread digestive orders, protein bioavailability, easy vs. advanced carbohydrates, and psychology and meals advertising.

In complete, there are 19 video lectures included with the ISSA diet coach certification course. Nonetheless, as a result of most of them fall below the two-minute mark, you actually shouldn’t (or can’t) depend on them to provide you all the data you must comprehend the related chapter.


The ISSA nutritionist program challenges you to exhibit your understanding of the course materials by a sequence of 18 open-book quizzes. Every one incorporates 10 multiple-choice questions that stem straight from the textbook.

Whereas it’s vital to acquire a excessive rating to your personal understanding, there is no such thing as a minimal threshold you have to meet. Plus, you’ll be able to take the quizzes as many instances as essential. I discovered the vast majority of them to be pretty simple, requiring a mean of about half-hour or so to finish.

Talking of completion, it is possible for you to to entry and begin your closing examination solely after you end the entire 18 quizzes.

Nutritionist Academic Bootcamp

If you happen to want extra help than what the textbook and lectures present, ISSA has you lined. The Vitamin Bootcamp takes issues to the following degree with 5 weeks of direct entry to high-level consultants.

A slide showing a summary of what's included in ISSA's Nutrition Bootcamps and live office hours
A slide that summarizes ISSA’s Vitamin Bootcamps and workplace hours

In the course of the 5 hour-long video periods, ISSA Elite Coach & Senior Content material Developer Jenny Scott and Lionel College school member Dr. Alex Hoffman ship complete classes on examine expertise particularly aimed toward sure chapters. For instance, their Week 5 Vitamin Bootcamp lined test-taking ideas, particular eventualities for diet teaching, and constructing a enterprise.

For extra individualized assist, the duo hosted open workplace hours for 5 reside one-hour periods. Though I didn’t take part, different college students can profit vastly from getting direct solutions to their questions in preparation for the ISSA examination.

Shopper Varieties Library

Obtainable within the “Downloads” part in ISSA’s scholar portal is a set of varieties and handouts that may make life a lot simpler if you happen to’re a private coach.

Right here’s what’s included:

  • Shopper Consumption Kind
  • Train Historical past Questionnaire
  • Train Bodily Exercise Readiness (PAR) Questionnaire
  • Well being Historical past Kind
  • Medical Historical past Kind
  • Three-Day Dietary Log
A screenshot of ISSA's dietary logs for clients
A portion of ISSA’s three-day dietary log

Whilst you don’t have to make the most of these varieties, it may possibly prevent a ton of time from having to create your personal. As a result of YouFit gives private trainers with their very own varieties for gathering consumer information, I didn’t use those out there by ISSA. However anybody who’s trying to enter personal teaching can depend on this useful resource and use the recognizable ISSA branding to convey on the spot credibility when working with a brand new consumer.

Last Examination for the ISSA Nutritionist Certification

When you’ve accomplished all of the quizzes and utilized the examine supplies, you ought to be ready for the final stage of the ISSA diet certification program: the ultimate examination. 

Just like the ISSA private coach certification course, the examination for the diet course is untimed, that means you’ll be able to take breaks and decide again up the place you left off. Then again, the construction of the ultimate examination differs in that it consists of each multiple-choice questions and essay questions, corresponding to describing and explaining the function of the three macronutrients and offering the really useful dietary allowances for every. 

I discovered it to be tougher than the ISSA private coaching certification check, particularly with the addition of a written portion. For transparency’s sake, I scored an 86 on the multiple-choice part and acquired 92 out of a doable 120 factors on the essay part for a cumulative rating of 81 %.

Anticipated Examine Time

ISSA breaks down the course into 10 weeks, with some weeks masking a number of chapters from the textbook. As a result of among the science-heavy content material may be difficult to grasp, you could spend extra time learning some chapters than others.

From my expertise, it took about an hour and a half of examine time per day for simply over a month for me to finish the course from begin to end. Nonetheless, health trainers who aren’t conversant in the essential tenets of meals science might have longer.

Cross Charge

Simply how troublesome is it to hit that 70 % mark on the ISSA nutritionist closing examination? With a go charge of 85 %, it’s clear that the course supplies do a more-than-adequate job of getting college students able to earn their cert. Nonetheless, it’s fascinating to notice that the go charge for the ISSA CPT certification examination is barely increased at about 90 %.

Retest Price

Don’t fret about any monetary ramifications if you happen to fail to go the ultimate examination in your first strive. The ISSA gives one free retest for its diet certification program. And because the examination is open-book, it is best to be capable to obtain at the least a 70 % if it’s a must to retake it.

Nonetheless, if you happen to don’t go in your two free makes an attempt, there’s a $99 resubmission price per subsequent try. 

ISSA Persevering with Training Necessities

If you happen to obtained your private coaching certification by ISSA, you have to full at the least 20 persevering with schooling items (CEUs) by workshops, seminars, different certifications, or different accredited actions each two years. Fortunately, going by their diet certification program won’t solely deal with that 20-unit requirement, but in addition let you skip out on having to pay a $99 recertification price.

Though that wasn’t the first cause I signed up for the course, I gladly welcomed this added bonus with open arms. And with my CEUs already taken care of, I can focus my efforts on getting the perfect outcomes for my purchasers.

Anticipated Wage

Vitamin teaching can be a stable profession selection if you understand how to market your companies. In line with, as of September 11, 2023, the nationwide common wage for a diet well being coach was $43,270. Most coaches can count on to make round $21 per hour, although that determine varies by state.

Whereas that wage vary gained’t make you a millionaire, you’ll be able to enhance your incomes potential by establishing a robust on-line presence. Constructing a loyal following on social media and studying the right way to constantly reel in new purchasers by way of testimonials and interesting video content material may help you stand out in a crowded discipline of licensed private trainers and diet coaches.

Different ISSA Certification Applications

Whether or not you wish to begin your profession as a CPT or add a specialization to your resume, ISSA affords a variety of programs that you would be able to full from the consolation of your personal house.

Along with Nutritionist, listed here are a few of their hottest health certification choices:

  • Grasp Coach
  • Elite Coach
  • Corrective Train
  • Health Coach
  • Licensed Well being Coach
  • On-line Coach
  • Bodybuilding Specialist
  • Powerlifting Teacher

Plus, there’s even a second nutrition-based program you’ll be able to partake in by ISSA: the Precision Vitamin Certification.

Precision Vitamin Certification

Ought to you end up in want of much more diet instruments, there’s another choice out there, albeit at a a lot steeper value. At a price of about $1,200, the ISSA Vitamin & Health Coach certification program permits you to receive two world-class certifications because of a partnership with one of many greatest leaders within the health business: Precision Vitamin.

Partaking on this two-part course permits you to earn ISSA’s top-rated private coach certification and Precision Vitamin’s Degree 1 Certification for a reasonably inexpensive value. You possibly can take each programs at your personal tempo, and every closing examination is open-book. In the end, although, if you happen to’re targeted extra on coaching than delivering ultra-detailed diet protocols, you’ll be protected with signing up for the usual ISSA nutritionist course.


Like ISSA, the Nationwide Academy of Sports activities Medication (NASM) has a pathway for private trainers to grow to be licensed in diet teaching. Written and reviewed by 20 main consultants, the NASM Licensed Vitamin Coach Certification (CNC) curriculum consists of 24 in-depth chapters throughout three sections: Dietary Science, Conduct Change Methods, and Vitamin Teaching. The course culminates in an open-book closing examination that incorporates 100 multiple-choice questions, which you have to end inside 90 minutes.

To earn the NASM CNC, you have to receive a rating of at the least 70 %. You might be allowed to retake the check two extra instances if you don’t go initially. If you happen to fail all three makes an attempt, you have to contact the Member Providers workforce by way of telephone to debate your choices. From a price perspective, NASM is barely costlier than ISSA, checking in at round $750. Nonetheless, the group additionally affords interest-free financing as an incentive.

NASM Nutrition Certification

NASM Vitamin Certification


  • Price: Begins at round $66 monthly
  • Course size: 4 to 10 weeks
  • Examine supplies: Digital studying platform, observe quizzes, downloadable PDF model of the textbook
  • Minimal passing rating on closing examination: 70 %

Test Worth


In comparison with ISSA, the American Council on Train (ACE) affords a extra inexpensive possibility for diet certification. At just below $500, their Health Vitamin Specialist Program may be extra palatable you probably have a restricted finances. Not solely does the course embody an eBook, video lectures, and quizzes, nevertheless it additionally incorporates a podcast that goes by the main points of every stage of the habits change course of.

Similar to ISSA, ACE requires college students to attain at the least a 70 % on the ultimate examination to earn a passing grade. Not solely do you get to take the check at house, however you might be allowed limitless retakes. Remember the fact that as a result of the ACE diet program is a seamless schooling course, you have to already maintain an NCCA-accredited certification to have the ability to make the declare of “specialist.” 

ACE Fitness Nutrition Specialist

ACE Health Vitamin Specialist


  • Price: Begins at round $367
  • Course size: 25 hours (round 4 weeks, relying on how typically you examine)
  • Examine supplies: Health diet guide, video lectures, podcasts, quizzes
  • Minimal passing rating on closing examination: 70 %

Test Worth

Parting Ideas on the ISSA Nutritionist Certification Program

As somebody who underwent a serious weight-loss journey, I can sympathize with those that wrestle to get their diet proper. Nonetheless, going by the method of shedding 75 kilos and discovering my calling as a private coach and health coach taught me how vital it’s to concentrate on every little thing you set into your physique. Constructing off that first-hand expertise by taking the ISSA nutritionist certification program sharpened my expertise and data, opened extra doorways to make more cash, and most significantly, put me in a stronger place to assist different individuals obtain their very own physique and well being objectives.

So, if you happen to’re able to take your profession as a health skilled to the following degree, don’t hesitate to join a specialization program that each you and your purchasers can profit from for years to come back.

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