Nutritionists help individuals with a variety of health concerns including weight loss and/or management, as well as learning how to eat based on specific health concerns such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and food allergies or sensitivities. Whether you are considering becoming a nutritionist or simply want to see one for your own needs, one of the very first questions you may be asking is how much does it cost to see a nutritionist? There are many different types of nutritionists and dietitians available to clients, and because of this, the amount someone spends for their services can vary. Do get a good idea of what a nutritionist in your area charges, you should pick up the phone and call a few around the area to ask about their charges for service. Some nutritionists offer complimentary consultations for individuals, while other offices charge for the initial visits.
In regards to health insurance and nutrition, a person needs to call their insurance company and see if their plan covers them for seeing a clinical nutritionist. Some offices will offer to call and help the client check their insurance as well. If insurance covers some visits they will let the person know how many. They may have a copay ranging from $10 to $40 (on average). However, not all insurance plans will cover someone for seeing a nutritionist. Insurance companies sometimes look at visits with clinical nutritionists as wellness or preventative health care. If a health insurance company does not cover for the consultation then that initial visit may range anywhere from $100 to $200. Some dietitians will offer home visits to patients which can add more to the initial charge as well. Follow up visits will most likely occur, and those can range anywhere between $50 and $150.
Some nutritionists will want to see lab results done which can cost anywhere from $50 to $200 depending on the lab panels that the nutritionist recommends. Those labs really vary on the individual’s health concerns, needs and goals. Not every patient is going to require the same amount of lab testing. Once again, this is something a person should ask their nutritionist about prior to scheduling a consultation with them.
Things to Look For
One important thing to watch for is making sure the person is scheduling a consultation with a licensed or certified nutritionist and not an individual trying to market their own health and wellness products. Some individuals who work individually will advertise themselves as nutritionists when they are not truly certified. A key thing to ask when meeting someone a person may want to work with is where they went to school and received certification. Also, it’s good ask about their business in general. Some are simply about promoting physical products they sell and they are the ones to avoid. True nutritionists and dietitians should not be selling you solely on their supplemental products.
Outside of recommended lab testing, there may be some costs in association with healthy cooking classes or grocery shopping. Not all nutritionists offer these programs, but some do. Cooking classes can start as low as $10 and be as much as $50 a class depending on the type of the cooking class and experience of the individual teaching it. As far as grocery shopping, charges can go into the hundreds of dollars to have a personal shopper who helps the person learn what foods to buy and help stock their cabinets.
Overall, seeing a nutritionist is a very smart step towards achieving health goals. Research should always be done to make sure the individual or company is a good fit. The American Dietetic Association even offers an online tool that allows you to search for local nutritionists by zip code.