Nutritionists provide evidence-based guidance around the impacts of nutrition and food on the health of humans. This can be at an individual or population level. Nutritionists are important as they use their knowledge of food and science to help people make better choices around what they eat, and how it can improve their health.
Knowing all this, how much does a nutritionist cost to see? The cost of a nutritionist in the UK can vary widely from around £50 to upwards of £150 per hour. This generally is the cost for one session, though multiple sessions or packages are usually recommended for ongoing support and guidance.

What is a nutritionist?

A nutritionist is an individual who is able to give information and support around dietary choices. However, these are not in relation to specific medical conditions. Anyone can call themselves a nutritionist, even if they do not have any actual qualifications. But only those who are registered by the governing body the AfN (Association for Nutrition) can use the title of Registered Nutritionist.

There are two different types of Registered Nutritionists:

Registered Associate Nutritionists (ANutrs) are those with a minimum of degree level knowledge and are qualified nutritionists to be able to provide evidence-based guidance.

Registered Nutritionists (RNutrs) will have the above as well as a certain number of years of experience as a nutritionist and have demonstrated that they can apply nutritional knowledge and provide advice within their areas of expertise.

Nutritionists commonly work as freelancers, in public health or in the private sector. They may work alongside dietitians in a more clinical setting.

Why do you need a nutritionist?

There are many reasons why you may find seeing a nutritionist helpful. For example, if you are someone who struggles to implement healthy dietary habits, nutritionists can offer personalised recommendations on ways to overcome challenges. They can provide recipes to help you improve the overall nutrient density of your diet, such as adding more vegetables or pulses.

Or if you struggle to meet certain nutrition related goals currently, they can provide solutions. For example, learning more on how to eat more protein on a plant based diet, a nutritionist can support someone to achieve this.
If someone has a goal of losing or gaining weight, a nutritionist can support with this by providing example meal plans and recipes and tailoring meals to the client’s needs and requirements. Costs for nutritionists can vary from around £50-100+ per hour, depending on location, amount of sessions needed and nutritionist expertise.

A nutritionist is not qualified to provide specific support for medical conditions such as diabetes or cancer. If you are looking for support for a specific medical condition, a dietitian would be an option to consider.

Nutritionist and Dietitian prices in the UK

The average cost of a session with a nutritionist can be around £75 per hour, compared to the average cost of a session with a dietitian being around £120 per hour. This is dependent on a number of factors, including location of meeting, the experience of the nutritionist, and the types of services provided or offered in the session time. The price to see a dietitian is higher as they will require a minimum bachelor degree and often further training, which is something nutritionists are not required to have. Dietitians are the most qualified nutrition councillors available, and are able to provide specific support on managing medical conditions, which nutritionists are not generally qualified for. 

To understand how much a nutritionist or dietitian costs, here is an average price breakdown depending on the appointment time. Keep in mind these are the average costs and prices will vary.

Average cost of nutritionist and dietitian in the UK

Prices can differ per location of the nutritionist in the UK. For example:

Average cost of nutritionist and dietitian depending on location

You may also find packages on offer when seeing a nutritionist or dietitian, that allows a number of sessions in a certain period of time. This can help you understand how much a nutritionist or dietitian costs per month. The time of each of these sessions can vary. For example:

3 month package with a nutritionist or dietitian, with 2 sessions a month- £300-900 (£100-300 per month)

6 month package with a nutritionist or dietitian, with 2 sessions a month- £600-1800 (£100-300 per month)

You can see from the above that the price of seeing a nutritionist or a dietitian can greatly vary depending on a number of factors. It is important to consider the main goals you have and who may be best qualified to help you meet those goals, within your budget and location.

How much does an online nutritionist consultation cost?

Having an online nutritionist consultation can be a similar cost to an in person consultation. Though prices may be lower as location is not a factor here. However, depending on the years of expertise of the nutritionist, and what is included in the session, prices can vary. On average, an hour online consultation with a nutritionist can cost between £60-100.

Is the nutritionist cost covered by insurance?

Many health insurance providers in the UK do not cover nutritionists, as the term nutritionist is not a protected title in the UK. In comparison, many health insurance providers will cover a member to see a dietitian, which is a protected title in the UK. Many of the dietitians in our team are Bupa registered dietitians, and we also are covered by other health insurance providers. Read more about the difference between nutritionists and dietitians below.

How much does a nutritionist meal plan cost?

When developing personalised meal plans, this may be included in the initial cost of a nutrition consultation, or it may come as an additional cost. The additional cost of a nutritionist meal plan may be due to the time taken for a nutritionist to calculate a person’s requirements, research recipes and meals that the person will like, and translate that into a plan. This on average can take between 1-2 hours per week. Though if a meal plan comes as part of the consultation price, these may not be specifically personalised to the individual, so it is important to factor this into the cost you are paying. More complex meal plans or plans that provide more variety and choice will often mean a higher cost, due to more time spent creating these. Meal plans themselves can range from £40 to £150 per week, depending on the detail required. 

What does a nutritionist cost cover?

The fee that is involved with seeing a nutritionist will often involve:

  • The preparation for the consultation, based on the forms completed
  • The time taken for the consultation itself
  • The report after the consultation includes any recommendations, guidance, meal ideas, recipes, links to certain foods suggested and possible meal plans. It may also include any tools or handouts discussed in the consultation.
  • Professional fees and insurance that ensure the nutritionist is safe to practise

How to choose the right nutritionist for a good price?

When considering seeing a nutritionist, it is key you consider the training and credentials the nutritionist has, and can provide evidence for if requested. You want to ensure the person is either a Registered Associate Nutritionist or Registered Nutritionist. This will mean they are educated to a minimum of degree level knowledge required to provide guidance on healthy eating and wellbeing.

Consider if you would like to see a nutritionist online, by phone, or if you would like an in person meeting. The latter will impact on the cost, depending on the location and what is most convenient to you. You may prefer an in person appointment to start with, to help establish a good relationship, before switching to online appointments after.

You will want to find out if there are any services that are done during a face to face appointment that cannot be done online, for example, taking weight or body fat measurements, if applicable.

Before booking, it would be good to check for recent reviews of previous clients seen by the nutritionist. This helps you to see how they may have worked with other clients, in what areas of support they have been given, and the success according to the client.

Keep in mind, if you are looking for support in a certain specific health area such as diabetes, kidney health, eating disorders, food allergies or heart health, it is recommended that you seek the advice from a registered dietitian. This is because dietitians are the only qualified and licensed health professionals to be able to provide support on specific health and medical conditions. See more below.

What to expect in the first nutritionist consultation?

If you are seeing a nutritionist for the first time, it is important to consider what you might want to get from the session, to make sure you use the time well and to your full advantage. Below is a breakdown of what to expect before, during and after the consultation.

Before the consultation

Before the session, you will likely be sent forms or questionnaires to complete. This allows the nutritionist some insight into your general health and basic dietary habits, as well as medical history. There may be information about food preferences or a tick list of food items you consume often. This will help the nutritionist to tailor the session and use the time efficiently.

During the consultation

At the start, you will be taken through a number of questions, to allow information gathering. This will include your goals and reasons for the consultations, your past habits and what you have tried previously to achieve the goals, the barriers you have in order to meet the goals, a review of supplements or medications you take and discussion of bowel habits.

They will likely ask for a dietary food intake recall, where you explain your typical daily diet, what it looks like in terms of meal timings, food choices, snacks, frequency of eating, as well as drink consumption. Both weekdays and weekends should be considered, to understand a better picture. Other factors, such as stress and energy levels, and mood may also be explored, as this can play a key role in our overall health and wellbeing.

Throughout the consultation, it is important that you are made to feel comfortable and relaxed to be sharing this information with the nutritionist, who you are meeting for the first time. This allows a foundation of trust to be built, which is key for long term communication and success.

Towards the end

From the information shared in this session, the nutritionist should be able to provide you with personalised and realistic health goals to work on from this session. These may be based around eating habits or what specific foods to eat more or less of. There may be discussion around timings of meals and meal composition. This information should be specific to you and should feel manageable, rather than large, unrealistic targets.

The nutritionist may put together a meal plan, which gives guidance on portion sizes, structure of meals and what to eat, which can provide further guidance if it is needed.

Following this, further sessions will be booked in or possible packages in an appropriate time frame, depending on the agreement with the nutritionist and the client.

Nutritionist or Nutritional therapist vs Dietitian

You may have come across the different terms and wondered if there are any differences in these titles. When you are looking for a professional to support you with health and lifestyle changes, it is important to know there is some variance between each of these titles. 

The titles cannot be used interchangeably, as each title holds different registrations and qualifications.

As previously mentioned, nutritionists who are qualified with a minimum of degree level knowledge, can be  given the label Registered Associate Nutritionists (ANutrs) or Registered Nutritionists (RNutrs).

Dietitians on the other hand, are nutrition professionals that have a requirement to be governed and regulated by law. This means that to use the dietitian title, you have to be registered with a professional body called the Health & Care professions council (HCPC) and follow their code of ethics to adhere to the highest standard. To be eligible, dietitians must have completed a minimum of a bachelors’ degree (BSc Hons) in Nutrition & Dietetics. Or, a related science degree with a postgraduate diploma or master’s degree in Dietetics. To make sure you are working with a dietitian, you can check if they are registered with the HCPC registry.

A nutritional therapist may use complementary medicine to provide recommendations on dietary and lifestyle changes, to prevent health issues. However, complementary medicine is not yet recognised as a valid treatment in conventional medicine as they are not based on scientific evidence. There is no specific qualification that is required to be a nutritional therapist, though some degrees are available to study.  Nutritional therapists can register themselves with the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC). This is self-regulated rather than independently regulated.

Nutritionist or Nutritional therapist vs Dietitian: prices and other things comparison

Nutritionist cost in UK compared to other countries

Prices can vary country by country, to see a nutritionist, when we compare to that in the UK. This may be due to factors such as economy and the income of the country, as well as the perceived importance and demand for nutritionists in certain countries. Here is a table to summarise the average cost of seeing a nutritionist per hour for a consultation, in certain countries:

Nutritionist cost in UK compared to other countries.

Is it worth paying for a nutritionist?

If you are wondering whether a nutritionist is right for you, consider WHY you might want to see a nutritionist firstly. Before making any changes, it is important to seek out the help from a professional. If you feel that your day to day eating habits or food choices can be improved and that you would like support with this, seeking out a qualified nutritionist can be worth it.

If you have a specific medical condition, then you would be better positioned seeing a registered dietitian, as they will be able to tailor any guidance specifically to help manage or treat the condition.

Either way, investing in your health and diet may seem like a cost at the start, but in the long term it is likely to be the best decision to improve your health status, minimise risk of certain illness in the future and to help you be the best version of yourself overall!

Get in touch with our team today, to have a free 20 minute call to discuss your health goals, and if our dietitians would be the best fit for you!