Board Exam Eligibility

Exam Eligibility Requirements

Individuals wishing to become “Board Certified in Holistic Nutrition®” must provide documentation of the following qualifying criteria:

  • Meet the NANP’s educational standards. This means successful completion of studies in holistic nutrition from a NANP approved holistic nutrition program OR providing documentation of an occupational certification, degree or diploma that meets the NANP’s educational standards (requires independent review and a $150 fee).
  • Professional membership in the NANP.
  • Provide documentation of 500 hours (includes a minimum of 250 direct contact hours and up to 250 indirect contact hours) of professional experience in holistic nutrition.

Direct Contact Hours

Definition: Working directly with customers, clients, or students providing nutrition education and/or consulting services.

  • Internship or externship approved by either the NANP/HNCB or your school of study.
  • Required documentation: a letter from supervisor validating successful completion of intern/externship.
  • Independent (self) employment providing nutritional consulting services.
  • Required documentation (please provide all of the following): 1) business license; 2) three (3) case studies (500 word summaries); 3) two (2) letters of support from mentors or peers who are aware of your active private practice and can attest to your professionalism; and 4) a log that includes a list of client names (to protect confidentiality, client initials may be used in lieu of name), date(s) of sessions and start/end times, to document reported direct contact hours. 
  • Employment as a Nutrition Consultant or Teacher of holistic nutrition.
  • Required documentation: a letter from employer verifying employment, including number of hours worked per month, and a copy of your job description.

Indirect Contact Hours

Definition: Research, writing, or developing educational materials or programs (in holistic nutrition) to be conducted in a community, business, academic or clinical environment.

  • Acting as a research intern.
  • Required documentation: a letter from supervisor validating successful completion of internship and a copy of internship (job) description.
  • Performing independent research (e.g., interviews, reading, internet and literature searches) for a publication or educational presentation.
  • Required documentation: a copy of the article, report or other format (e.g., PowerPoint presentation) providing the results of your research.
  • Non-research preparation for the creation of a publication or educational presentation, be it public, recorded, or both (e.g., actual writing and other types of material preparation, locating and creating dialogue with key individuals, venues, consultants, assistants, publishers, printers, and publication representatives).
  • Required documentation: a copy of the article, report or other format (e.g., PowerPoint presentation) providing the actual publication or educational presentation.

Activities conducted as a required part of an educational program, with the explicit exception of internships and externships, do not qualify toward the 500 hour requirement. The Holistic Nutrition Credentialing Board will make a determination of applicability of unusual experience in individual cases.

Exception for New Graduates*

Those who have newly graduated from a NANP-approved program may apply to sit for the exam without providing documentation of 500 contact hours. The candidate will be allowed two (2) years from the date of his/her exam in which to provide this documentation. Until such time, the candidate will be able to use the title, “Board Certified in Holistic Nutrition® (Cand.).”

* A new graduate is an individual who graduated from a NANP-approved program within the twelve (12) month period in which they apply to sit for the exam.

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The following documentation must accompany the Board Exam Application:

  • Application fee $75 (non-refundable) Click here to get your exam application.
  • Examination fee $300 Click here to pay for your exam.
  • Signed and dated Professional Conduct Agreement (Within Application)
  • Photo or Headshot (electronic or paper submissions accepted)
  • Copy of your driver’s license
  • Resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • Proof of existing liability insurance (if in clinical practice)
  • Copy of holistic nutrition diploma(s) and/or certificate(s)
  • Copy of any professional license(s) you hold
  • Documentation of 500 hours professional experience contact hours with completed “Contact Hour Documentation Form” (Contact Hours Form will be made available immediately once the application has been submitted)
  • Official transcripts from graduating institutions (to be sent directly to the NANP/HNCB by school)
  • Letters of reference (one each: professional and personal, to be sent directly to the NANP/HNCB by the reference source)