I graduated from IIN back in 2016 after completing their 12 month online course. I regularly get asked about my opinion of the course. Therefore, I’m dedicating this post to sharing my honest review of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition so you can decide if it’s right for you.
When I realised I wanted to turn my passion of health into a career, I looked into many different nutrition schools, but when I came across IIN I instantly knew it was the school for me. The main reason I chose to enrol there was because the education was based on a holistic approach to health. It doesn’t just focus on food, it teaches about the importance of relationships, spirituality, finances, physical activity, creativity and how all of these effect our overall wellbeing. This is the only school that teaches their students how to create wellness in all areas of their life. This was a fairly new concept to me and something I definitely wanted to dive deep into. Not only this, but it also includes a business and marketing program, which teaches you basic skills to create your very own successful health coaching practice. IIN helped me gain the confidence and knowledge to kickstart my 1-on-1 health coaching business which I’ll be forever grateful for.
What I enjoyed about IIN
- I absolutely loved the community! I would bet there is no other nutrition school community like the one IIN has created. Everyone is so passionate and excited about being a student and the energy is inspiring and contagious. You never feel like you’re walking the journey alone with the engaging and interactive program, facebook groups and coaching calls. Everyone is very supportive and positive, and you can truly create life-long friends.
- I loved the flexibility of the course. They provided you with the modules, but you got to choose exactly when you watched and studied them. It is very adaptable if you have a busy schedule.
- I loved that the business and marketing side of things didn’t delve too deep, but was enough to help kickstart your own business in a short few months. They provide you with marketing materials like your own website and templates for business cards, emails, brochures and lots more.
- I really enjoyed learning from such a variety of expert speakers. They were all so passionate, educational and interesting.
What I didn’t enjoy about IIN
- The coaching calls didn’t feel very organised and I usually left feeling like I didn’t really benefit from them. The timing of the calls were a little awkward too (I had to get up very early to join), but I guess that’s to be expected when trying to create a suitable time for students located all over the world.
Frequently asked questions
What is IIN?
IIN is the world’s largest health coaching school. It is based in New York and was founded by Joshua Rosenthal in 1992. They have an innovative online program which has helped over 100,000 students worldwide in 175 countries.
What do you learn?
The curriculum is based on three pillars: nutrition, business and coaching. You are taught about nutrition and nutrition science, wellness concepts, coaching methods and theories, and business-building and marketing skills. Want to dive deeper into the curriculum? Click here to receive the complete IIN curriculum guide.
How long does the course take?
It is a one year course, but you can choose to register for an accelerated version which takes six months.
Is IIN only for people who want to start a health coaching business?
Absolutely not. This course is for anyone who is passionate about health and is eager to learn more about how they can create wellness in all aspects of their life. You can simply enrol in this course to take your personal health to the next level.
What exactly is a health coach?
A health coach is a wellness professional who supports their clients to reach their health goals. They take into account their clients unique situations and help them make healthy sustainable changes to their diet. They educate their clients about how other aspects of their lives, not just food, effects their overall wellbeing, and guides them in taking steps to create wellness in all areas.
How is a Health Coach different from a Nutritionist and Dietician?
Nutritionists and Dieticians have much more extensive education and training giving them the necessary qualifications to diagnose and treat health conditions. Health coaches on the other hand provide and explore information on different diets and supplements suited to their clients unique needs, but they do not prescribe, diagnose or treat. So although the desired outcome for clients may be the same, the way these health professionals go about it is slightly different.
How much time per week is required to do this course?
You will need to put aside 5-8 hours per week for the 1 week course, or 10-15 hours for the accelerated 6 month course.
What qualifications do you graduate with?
Upon graduating you will become an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and receive a paper and online certificate representing this title. This is a certificate of completion, not a certification. There are ways in which you can achieve a certification and become a Board-Certified Health Coach, but keep in mind this isn’t necessary, as no government agency requires a certification for a Health Coach to practice.
What kind of career paths can you do after graduating?
There are countless opportunities for you to create a part-time or full-time work as a health coach including the following:
- Working with clients online, face-to-face or in group settings
- Holding workshops to teach about cooking skills, health and wellness etc.
- Launching online programs and courses
- Writing wellness books e.g. recipe books, personal development etc.
- Creating your own wellness products in the food, supplement or beauty industry
- Working at hospitals or doctors in their private practices
- Working as a health coach for a wellness centre, spa, gym or health food store
How much does IIN cost?
I am not at liberty to disclose the cost on my social media platforms. This is a general rule they have for everyone. You can check out their FAQ’s page which shares the price. The cost of the course varies depending if you pay upfront or choose one of the personalised payment plans. If you’d like to find out about the cost and all financial options, please contact the school directly via email or phone (contact numbers listed below). I am also proud to be an Ambassador with IIN and if you enrol through me you get an automatic $2,000 off if you pay upfront, or $1,500 off if you choose a payment plan. Simply mention my name when enrolling.
I am vegan though, so isn’t it a waste of time to learn about all the different dietary theories?
It is true that IIN teaches over 100 different dietary theories, and being vegan myself, I also wondered if it was worth learning about. I still chose to enrol though and am really happy I did. It was actually quite interesting learning more about these other diets and gaining a different perspective on them all. It’s also important to remember that not all the clients you work with will be vegan. Some clients might have a goal to become vegan, but they may need help transitioning, which will still involve the consumption of animal products. Learning about all these different ways of eating will equip you with diverse knowledge to support people with where they are at on their wellness journey.
Who are the teachers?
You will learn from over 85 visiting experts in their field including David Wolfe, Deepak Chopra, Dr. Frank Lipman, Dr. David Katz, Dr. Michelle Maldonado, and Gabby Bernstein. In addition you’ll hear from members of the IIN staff who have degrees in business, education, feng shui, massage therapy, nutrition science, psychology, website design and so much more.
How can I dive deeper and learn more about this school?
- Taking a sample class
- Downloading a program overview
- Downloading the curriculum guide
- Contacting their admissions team (they are so lovely and helpful!) directly(877) 730-5444 (U.S.) or +1 (212) 730-5433 (International)
- Emailing me with any questions you may have
Is becoming a Health Coach right for you?
I’ll be honest and say being a Health Coach isn’t for everyone. It’s important to determine exactly what you’d like to study and in what way you’d like to support your clients. If you want to learn how to help clients find wellness through a holistic approach, then a Health Coach might be the right choice. In saying this though, you can still choose to specialise in a certain field after graduating e.g. gut health, weight management, skin health, autoimmune diseases etc. I feel like IIN gives you much more freedom and flexibility around creating a personalised coaching practice. The Institute for Integrative Nutrition has recently developed educational partnerships with several colleges and universities, and now allows graduates to use their education towards a bachelor’s, master’s or a doctorate degree.
On the other hand, if you’d prefer to study medical science, anatomy and physiology, the biochemistry of nutrition and become an expert in that field particularly, then perhaps becoming a Nutritionist or Dietician is more suitable. This paths leads you to be able to diagnose conditions, prescribe supplements, analyse bloodwork and so on.
This blog, its content and any linked material are presented for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or prescribing. Nothing contained in or accessible from this post should be considered to be medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or prescribing, or a promise of benefits, claim of cure, legal warranty, or guarantee of results to be achieved. Never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read in this blog or in any linked material. Olivia Budgen is not a medical doctor. Consult with a licensed healthcare professional before altering or discontinuing any current medications, treatment or care, or starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, or if you have or suspect you might have a health condition that requires medical attention.