Nutritional Therapy Association: My Experience

by lydia on June 25, 2012

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to obtain some kind of holistic health care degree or certification. I’ve spent my entire adult life passionately pursuing all sorts of avenues of health, healing, nutrition, herbs and so on. I never quite knew what path to take and never quite seemed to find the right time or the money to make it happen. Until the summer of 2011, that was when everything aligned perfectly for me and I took a leap of faith and entered the Nutritional Therapy program through the Nutritional Therapy Association based out of Olympia, Washington. If you are at all interested in this program, I highly recommend signing up to listen to the Introduction to the program, it is VERY thorough and informative.

Nutritional Therapy Practitioner

I was so excited to receive my materials and order my books. Most of the books on the reading list were books I wanted to read or had read already. The dietary principles taught are based on the studies of Weston A. Price and the properly prepared nutrient diet he discovered for optimal health, in his book, ‘Nutrition & Physical Degeneration’. In addition to the course reading, there were DVDs, recordings/lectures and regular conference calls to educate us further. A student reference disk took us through all the modules in a systematic fashion, building layer upon layer as we learned the foundational systems and priorities to lead a healthy life. The beauty of this program was that it built incrementally yet thoroughly upon the foundation of diet and how it impacts our body as a whole and how to address health issues through understanding the foundations of good health. This helped me to approach my own health in a more orderly and direct fashion with obvious results.

Another aspect of the program, as it is a distance program, is to attend 3-weekend workshops to learn the functional evaluation aspect of what a Nutritional Therapist would use in their practice. The functional aspect takes healing to a whole new level in my opinion. Based on a series palpations, the functional evaluation is a form of kinesiology to help assess the status of each individual’s deeper health concerns and ultimately used to then use the practice of lingual neuro testing.  Lingual-Neuro Testing (LNT) is a valuable biofeedback tool that enables the health care provider to determine the usefulness of a nutritional supplement before it is dispensed to the patient. LNT accesses the body’s innate ability to discriminate between what it needs, and what it does not need, in order to correct a specific problem–a weak organ or a nutritional deficiency, for example. This simple and effective technique makes the difference between a generic nutritional therapy plan and a personalized one.

The phenomenon that is observed with LNT represents:

  • The existence of physiologic indicators, like the heart rate, that reflect specific body functions and their relative health.
  • The powerful connection between the sensory function of the mouth and the brain, or central nervous system (CNS).
  • The ability of the CNS to recognize the value of what is in the mouth (i.e. a nutritional supplement)
  • The tendency of the CNS to immediately change a physiologic indicator in response and proportional to the recognized value of a particular nutrient.

This additional aspect just adds to the already in-depth assessments that a practitioner would take with a client. It is a useful tool in helping to determine where the body is taking the biggest hit health wise and further assessing how to help a client. It has personally helped me immensely and I am grateful to have learned how to functionally evaluate the body. It is fascinating to me that the body can give us clues to our overall health without always having to rely on inconclusive medical testing. Not to say that this form of testing is conclusive, but that it is non-invasive and simple to perform to give us clues as to what the body may need.

If you’ve ever read the book, ‘Adrenal Fatigue’ by James Watson, you will know that he uses a series of questionnaire’s, as well as offers several functional tests you can do to help you assess the state of your adrenals. This is the exact kind of thing that is taught by the Nutritional Therapy Association. The functional evaluation is not necessary, it is meant as a tool to further assess the health issues of a client. There are also many basic tests that can be taught to the client to perform on their own in helping assess things like an overall allergic tension in the body to an allergic tension to a specific food. Nutritional Therapy Association - 2011/2012

I enjoyed the weekend classes immensely and was able to meet some amazing people through my classmates. The workshops were extensive, yet very informative. I enjoyed the lectures and side discussions, as well as the bonding with like-minded folks. I am grateful for the connections I’ve made through my classmates as they all were amazing and will be a great networking resource. Additionally, there are further ways to remain connected and learning through an online group you can join once the course has been completed. This is a great resource as well. I am still learning as I go along and this means is a great way to continue to do so.

Supplements are heavily focused on as well, a factor I was very grateful for. Though using supplements is not the first and foremost priority for overall health, they are a very useful tool in therapy as many people are so compromised in their health anymore. The foundations of digestion and blood sugar handling are clearly two of the top priorities in straightening out overall health. Blood sugar was something I learned about in depth through Nora Gedgaudas and her book; ‘Primal Body – Primal Mind’. Nora Gedgaudas was how I found the program in the first place. Here is what she shared about the program;

I did finally discover a nutritional certification program that I was able to trust to provide me with a basic, scientifically sound,physiologically-based education, training and credentialing, as well as an underlying foundation that drew from the work of many great nutritional pioneers…among them, Weston A. Price, Royal Lee, and Francis Pottenger. I knew I’d be in good company here. The Nutritional Therapy Association (NTA) teaches sound, foundational, principle based nutritional coursework, in addition to functionally-based techniques that can be used to assess nutritional status and progress on an individual basis. Caveat: The basic NTA coursework is extremely rudimentary in nature and admittedly lacks the sort of minutiae that adds to a more sophisticated knowledge of physiological systems. That said, the Nutritional Therapy certification beneficially allows one to move to far more advanced levels through access to healthcare practitioner-level continuing education elsewhere. The NTA program can be a useful foundational stepping stone to higher learning, in this regard, and can be your first step into a much clearer and more exciting grasp of the sophisticated machine we all inhabit and how the way we eat influences us.

Want a better feel for what ‘Nutritional Therapy’ is? Read more here: What is Nutritional Therapy.

My hope is that in sharing my experience and overview of the training I received through NTA, I can provide a good understanding of the program and encourage others seeking to get further nutrition education to apply. I’ve had numerous people write me to inquire further about the program and felt it would be helpful to share in further detail.

{ 29 comments }

Anna Simpson June 25, 2012 at 12:21 pm

Great post! I agree with Lydia. I totally enjoyed the past nine months tremendously and gained a wealth of knowledge. I took other nutrition courses but nothing like NTA offers. They teach you the Foundations on which you can build on and so much more. My health and the health of my family members has improved a lot! NTA rocks!

Lisa Rose June 25, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Thanks for posting your experience Lydia!
I’m signing up for the NTC training starting in February (Las Vegas) so I can split the program into 2 parts. Can’t wait!!

Melanie Christner June 26, 2012 at 6:41 am

Great post, Lydia!

lydia June 27, 2012 at 6:32 am

Yay Lisa! That’s so exciting! I am so glad you decided to do it, you will love it. It’s great that you can do it in two parts that should make it even more doable. Just get ready for all the reading – start now!!

Mel and Anna ~ so glad to have been able to connect with you two awesome ladies through this program!

Murielle August 3, 2012 at 3:31 pm

Thank you for posting this, Lydia. I just signed up for the Fall 2012 NTP program and I am so excited to have placed my order for the books. I am a little nervous about working full time during my training. Any advice on that?

lydia August 3, 2012 at 4:54 pm

Start reading now!!! Congrats Murielle, you will love it! You will have to use your weekends I guess and hopefully you have support at home! It will all be worth it in the end! Good luck!

Mary Kay Irving December 6, 2012 at 6:07 pm

Thanks for this post. I\’ve been searching for the best program myself for awhile now and have it narrowed to this program or through Denver\’s NTI.

Do you know what the cost of the program is. The only reference I see on their website is on the page where the 3 day workshop is located so I\’m not sure if that is just the cost of the workshop or for the whole program?

Murielle December 8, 2012 at 11:15 pm

The course fee is under $4000 and this does not include travel expenses for the 3 workshops, books, supplies, and a supplement test kit. I am sure if you call the office they will give you this information in detail. Why not call for their information packet? I am very happy with the course so far. It is well worth the money.

lydia April 28, 2014 at 5:49 pm

I thought so too Murielle!

Lisa March 8, 2013 at 12:55 pm

I tweeted this blog post about your experience and absolute excellent explanation of what the NTA and NTP program/certification is all about. I also am an NTP. I loved the program and sharing your information. Thank you.

Twitter Name: grass_fed_beef_

Best wishes,
Lisa,
Farmer

lydia June 3, 2013 at 9:48 am

Hi Lisa -thanks for stopping by and for sharing!

Jill June 2, 2013 at 9:03 pm

Hi, I’m thinking of enrolling in this school but was wondering what kind of diet is promoted? Is it mostly meat based? Thanks for your insight :)

lydia June 3, 2013 at 9:48 am

Hi Jill! The dietary principles that are taught are based on traditional cultures and what we’ve learned from them. If you are familiar with Weston A. Price or the foundation you can read all about the dietary principles you will learn; either on the website – westonapricefoundation.org OR through the book; Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. Animal foods are critical for overall health so that is one component for sure! Hope that helps!

Jill June 4, 2013 at 2:21 am

Thank you Lydia :) this is really helful information!

Emily November 23, 2013 at 1:58 am

Julia Ross (author of The Mood Cure and The Diet Cure) recommended I get certified through the NTA when I went to her training over the summer. I am an engineer by degree but stay-at-home-mom for the past 4 years. I got interested in nutrition when my hubby was diagnosed gluten and dairy intolerant by a chiropractor. My interest has snowballed since then and I research all sorts of things every night. I know I’d like to take the program since I’m so interested in all of it but not sure if I should stick with engineering. Any thoughts?

lydia April 28, 2014 at 5:49 pm

I would go with your ‘gut’ Emily!

daniel January 6, 2014 at 11:02 am

please confirm if the credits of NTA courses can be credited to University Southern california or UCLA

lydia January 6, 2014 at 11:19 am

I cannot confirm that Daniel -you would have to contact both schools to find that out!

Rebecca Cody April 27, 2014 at 12:34 am

Good description. I graduated from the program in 2007 and we’ve definitely benefitted from what I learned. I had been reading nutrition books since the early 1960s and had become confused with so much conflicting advice out there. I live here in Mothership Olympia, and the place is crawling with NTPs, who make great friends.

My class was the last year before they went to the DVD program, so the teacher was there with us each weekend. I should volunteer to help with training one of these days to see how the new program works.

lydia April 29, 2014 at 10:57 am

Hi Rebecca! I wish my area was crawling with NTP’s -I’m lonely here in SE PA!

gordotl August 6, 2014 at 3:49 pm

OK – the class sounds wonderful. You now paid $3900 for 9 months of training. What is the ROI? What do you do with the training? How do you set up a consultancy? Is that discussed at all?

lydia November 7, 2014 at 3:27 pm

Hi Gordotl,

I’m personally running an online practice taking distance clients and running programs online as well. I used my site as a gateway into my practice -so little overhead on my part.

The business aspect is not deeply delved into in the training – it would be best to do more training after the program – there is a training by Margaret Floyd of Eat Naked for NTP’s and business.

ROI will be different for everyone – but it was above and beyond worth it for me -not to mention I now have a network of other practitioners to draw from and get support from as well.

Amanda November 7, 2014 at 4:34 pm

Do you know the difference between this program and a Health Coach Certification (HCH) from Institute for Integrative Nutrition? Can a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom make money at this?

Amanda November 7, 2014 at 4:44 pm

Also, the difference practically between the NTP and NHC? :) Thanks.

Kim April 19, 2015 at 7:13 pm

Seriously looking at taking this course. I have a passion for nutrition and this teaches all the fundamentals I would be interested in working with. Thanks for the review! :)

Hannah April 19, 2015 at 8:29 pm

I have been looking into institute for integrative nutrition and this NTP program. I haven’t been wowed yet by IIN so I’m curious to learn more about NTP. So when you say kinesiology do they teach you muscle testing? Just curious! Thanks for the info, I signed up for their info packet, can’t wait to read through it:)

Tonia October 27, 2015 at 4:26 pm

About what income would this class bring after graduation?

lydia October 30, 2015 at 6:06 am

That’s not a question I can answer – it depends on the individual and what they do with it. There is great potential to make very good money though just so you know. Some people go and work for someone else’s practice and some start their own -it can take a couple years to really get yourself going with your NTA certification.

scarlette February 4, 2016 at 2:28 pm

Im seriously considering taking this course.. Its starts in 3 weeks! The only thing that Im worried about is how much time it will take up. The website says 15-20 hours a week. Do you think this is accurate? Im opening a mobile smoothie cart this spring and dont want to be too overwhelmed..

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