The Association for Nutrition is the organisation which regulates Registered Nutritionists in the UK. It holds a register of people who have demonstrated that they have met the criteria for sufficient nutrition knowledge (Registered Associate Nutritionists) and both knowledge and experience in a specific area (Registered Nutritionists).
What does being a Registered Nutritionist mean?
All those registered with the Association for Nutrition must adhere to their Standards of Ethics, Conduct and Performance. This includes things like acting in the best interest of clients, maintaining confidentiality, following robust scientific advice, communicating appropriately and keeping within the law. The whole purpose is to protect the public. To protect the public from harmful advice which could harm their physical and mental health.
What about people who work on their own?
In addition to the main standards, AfN also brought in specific standards for those who work independently. That’s people who work as freelancers, people who volunteer as nutritionists but don’t work in a team, and people who work for organisations where they are the only nutritionist. These standards are there because AfN recognises that those who work on their own don’t have as much support around them, so to help ensure high standards, they have brought in extra standards (from 1st July 2023) for those in independent and freelance practice.
What are the AfN Standards for Independent and Freelance Practice?
The IP Standards can be found on the Association for Nutrition (AfN) website: https://www.associationfornutrition.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/03/AfN-IP-Standards-Apr-23-final.pdf
They include ensuring we have good contracts in place for work, all the appropriate systems in place to work with clients, that we pay our taxes, that we have support networks and we keep up to date.
It might seem obvious but this is another way you know that if you are working with a Registered Nutritionist, you are working with a professional you can trust – AND, if you have any issues, they are part of an organisation which will take your concerns seriously.
Where can I get further information as an ANutr or RNutr on complying?
If you are a nutrition student or AfN registrant and would like to know more about how to comply with the IP standards, I have recorded a session where I go through them and give you lots of tips on how to comply and resources to help you.