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Weight Loss Consultation Course

Course CodeBRE307
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

Weight Loss Consultant Course

  • Start a Weight Loss Consulting Business

The rise in obesity rates has been accompanied by an increase in the range of opportunities to develop weight loss services designed to help clients not only lose weight, but also increase their fitness levels. Throughout this course we examine how to set up effective weight loss services and provide you with the knowledge and skills to support these services.

The focus of this course is on providing weight reducing advice and support both to individuals and groups, as well as considering which kind of service you may wish to offer and how to go about delivering this service.

When deciding to establish a weight reduction business or service, it is important to consider where your interests lie and also how much autonomy you wish to have. Depending on your specific interests you may wish to advise people individually at home or in a clinic environment, or may prefer to offer group meetings where you have complete control over session plans and delivery or alternatively you may wish to join a weight reducing business as an employee or franchise holder.  The course looks at the practicalities of all different types of services.
There are 8 lessons in this course:
  1. Scope and Nature of Weight Loss
    • Obesity Defined
    • Genetics
    • Diet
    • Exercise
    • Life Events
    • Adolescence
    • Pregnancy
    • Menopause
    • Middle Age
    • Stopping Smoking
    • Weight gain linked to Medication
    • Weight gain following Injury or Illness
    • Scope and Nature of Weight Loss Industry
    • Health Programmes
    • Meal Replacement Products
    • Pharmacotherapy
    • Surgery for Weight Loss
  2. Managing Physical Activity
    • Role of Physical Activity in Energy Balance
    • Role of Physical Activity Raising Metabolic Rate
    • Bone Mass Maintenance
    • Physical Activity and Mental Health
    • Specific Aspects of Exercise When Overweight
    • Tips to get started with Exercise
    • Types of Exercise and Effectiveness for Weight Loss
    • Cardiovascular Activity
    • Optimum Target Heart Rate for Fat Burning
    • Resistance Activities
    • Exercise Progression
    • Recommending Exercise
  3. Managing the Diet
    • Teaching Portion Control
    • Beginning to Address Portion Control
    • Energy Density
    • Fats and Energy Density
    • Sources of Fats
    • Tips to Reduce Fat
    • Practical Tips Based on Daily Meal Plan
    • Sugar and Weight Reducing
    • General Weight Loss Tips
    • Using Food Diaries
    • Nutrition Resources and Lesson Planning
  4. Managing the Psychology
    • Eating and Emotions
    • The Brain and Weight Management
    • Managing the Psychology
    • Helping People to Make Changes
    • Stages of Change Explained -Pre contemplation, Contemplation, Preparation, Action, Maintenance, Relapse
  5. Tools for the Consultant
    • Determining Weight Status of Clients
    • Administering Weight Checks
    • Calculating BMI
    • Interpreting BMI
    • Setting Targets
    • Determining Waist Measurement
    • Health Evaluation
    • Nutritional Advice
    • Running Supermarket Tours
    • Food Labels
  6. Delivering Weight Loss Services
    • Individual Consultations
    • Features of an Ideal One to One Consultation
    • Good Questioning Skills
    • Running Group Sessions
    • Running Independent Weight Management Group Sessions
    • Joining an Established Weight Management Business
    • Potential Barriers to Weight Loss
    • Social Issues and Pressure
    • Time Constraints
    • Lifestyle
    • Physical Limitations
    • Psychological Limitations
    • Age
    • Hormonal Issues
  7. Conducting a Weight Loss Consultation
    • The Nest Step
    • Target Marketing
    • Demand
    • Competition
    • Location
    • PBL Project -A major project 
  8. Establishing a Weight Loss Business
    • Starting a New Business
    • Personality and Lifestyle
    • Affordability
    • Industry Knowledge and Experience
    • Starting a Business versus Buying a Franchise
    • Business Plans
    • The Planning Process
    • Marketing
    • The Marketing Plan, Promotion, Advertising, Networking
    • Summary of a Successful Business


  • Explain factors that affect weight in a body.
  • Determine the scope and nature of the weight loss industry in your region.
  • Explain the role of physical activity in weight loss and provide practical advice and resources for you to use as a weight loss consultant.
  • Explain the role of dietary change in weight loss and provide practical advice and resources for you to use as a weight loss consultant.
  • Explain a variety of ways that psychology can be applied to the control of weight.
  • Determine weight status of clients
  • Select and implement and manage the use of different techniques to control weight in clients
  • Identify a viable weight loss service, and those things that must be done to optimize the chance of ongoing success.
  • Adapt dietary resources based on needs of an individual or a particular group.
  • Planning to start a weight management group
  • Develop a weight management service as a business

What Does Overweight or Obese Mean?
The terms ‘overweight’ and ‘obese’ are most simply defined as an abnormal or excessive accumulation of fat that will impair health. Using definitions of overweight and obesity, world health authority data has demonstrated that world wide obesity has doubled over the past 30 years affecting over 200 million men in 2008 and nearly 300 million women, while as many as 1.5 billion adults are currently overweight.

Body Mass Index is used as tool for determining the actual risks to an individual of being overweight or obese. This tool is a simple index of weight- for- height (calculated by dividing a person’s weight in kilograms by the square of their height in meters (kg/m2) and is used alongside charts to determine their relative health risk. We shall return to BMI in later lessons however, here it would be helpful to familiarise yourself with the World Health Authority definition of being overweight as having a BMI greater or equal to 25 and definition of obesity as having a BMI greater or equal to 30. For children and teenagers different criteria are used which take into account differences in body fat between girls and boys as well as differences at various ages.

Unfortunately the explosion of obesity rates has also had a significant impact on health. Raised BMI is a major risk factor for cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, osteoarthritis as well as certain cancers such as those affecting the breast and colon. As a result of these health effects, overweight and obesity is now the fifth leading risk for deaths worldwide with at least 2.8 million adults dying on an annual basis as a result of being overweight or obese. Sadly the future health of our children will also be affected by rising obesity rates - as many as 43 million children, younger than 5 years of age, were defined as being overweight in 2010, a figure which is rapidly increasing.

Some causes of obesity include genetics, diet, exercise, lifestyle choices, psychology, disease and disorders. Before we can devise an appropriate intervention for weight loss it is necessary to consider when and how we gain weight and with this in mind we shall now consider a range of different factors in turn.


Managing the Psychology can be as Important as Managing the Physiology
To support weight loss it is important to consider the contribution of psychology to weight management. An individual’s psychology can have a big influence on their weight.
To support someone to lose weight it is important to address the psychological aspects.   Some areas to consider are:  
Develop a positive mental approach to healthy lifestyle
  • Focus on being healthy rather than losing weight.
  • See healthy food and exercise as being enjoyable (reward) rather than a chore (punishment)
Identify and address emotional issues
  • Identify emotional triggers for unhealthy eating and develop alternative strategies to deal with the emotion e.g. going for a walk, talking to a friend, take deep breaths.
Address brain chemical contribution
  • Exercise to increase dopamine levels instead of eating
  • Use portion control to monitor how much to eat, rather than rely on messages from the brain.
Positive thinking, affirmations and visualisation
  • Reframe success and failure 
  • Visualise yourself as already being your ideal weight.
  • Use affirmations to reduce effects of emotional eating.
Set realistic, achievable goals
  • Monitor goals through journaling and diary writing
Getting someone to start a diet and exercise program is the most obvious task for any weight loss consultant. If someone comes to you for help, they are likely to have the motivation to start doing what you prescribe. To be effective though; they need to keep doing it, and that may be a much harder thing to achieve.
Your client should be made aware of triggers to relapses so that they can hopefully avoid them. As an adviser you should encourage your client to reflect on previous relapses and provide tips to avoid them. 
Here are a few tips which may prove useful
  • Stick to a routine. Breaking an established routine is one of the fastest ways to relapse. Clients should therefore, be advised to continue with any new routines that have been successful e.g. keeping up with a new exercise program or their resolve to eat breakfast.
  • Continued monitoring. As clients start losing weight they may stop keeping a food diary to keep track of eating patterns. Unfortunately this may prevent them from spotting unhealthy foods that may start to creep back into their diet. For these clients it is easy for them to believe that a piece of cake eaten was a ‘one off’ while a food diary may show where these ‘one off treats’ are starting to become a more regular occurrence. 
  • Keep up with regular weight checks.  Research has highlighted that regular weight checks are positively linked with both losing weight and maintaining weight loss. A weekly weight check will allow clients to see where any lost weight starts to creep back and allow clients to lose the odd pound or kilogram they have regained before it turns into many more.
  • Provision of a reward system for losing weight and keeping it off. Rewards are incentives to keep the motivation going and can be a slights break from the diet or exercise program or something meaningful to your client e.g. having a bubble bath or buying a new dress.
Avoid a Relapse
Clients unfortunately suffer relapses where they have returned them to their old behaviour. As an advisor you should try and identify the causes for the relapse and offer positive suggestions and support to help get them back on track. Also reassure your client that relapse is an inevitable part of behaviour change.

Meet some of our academics

Jade SciasciaBiologist, Business Coordinator, Government Environmental Dept, Secondary School teacher (Biology); Recruitment Consultant, Senior Supervisor in Youth Welfare, Horse Riding Instructor (part-completed) and Boarding Kennel Manager. Jade has a B.Sc.Biol, Dip.Professional Education, Cert IV TESOL, Cert Food Hygiene.
Lyn QuirkM.Prof.Ed.; Adv.Dip.Compl.Med (Naturopathy); Adv.Dip.Sports Therapy Over 30 years as Health Club Manager, Fitness Professional, Teacher, Coach and Business manager in health, fitness and leisure industries. As business owner and former department head for TAFE, she brings a wealth of skills and experience to her role as a tutor for ACS.

Check out our eBooks

Human NutritionBoth a text for students, or an informative read for anyone who wants to eat better. While covering the basics, the book approaches nutrition a little differently here to some other books, with sections covering ”Modifying diet according to Genetic Disposition or Lifestyle”, “How to find Reliable Information on Nutrition” and “Understanding how Diet relates to Different Parts of the Body” (including Urinary, Digestive, Respiratory and Circulatory System, the Brain, etc). This ebook was written to complement the ACS Nutrition I course, and provides a solid foundation for anyone wanting to grasp a fundamental understanding of Human Nutrition. 41 pages
How to be a Life CoachLife coaching is a relatively new profession - although coaches have been around for a long time in the guise of trainers, instructors, managers and tutors for various professions and disciplines. Life coaching is not easily defined, but it is a type of mentoring which focuses on helping individuals to achieve what they would like to achieve and thereby to lead more fulfilling lives. Unlike other forms of coaching, it takes place outside of the workplace and is concerned with all aspects of a person’s life.
Human BiologyFor any new student of human biology, being confronted with thousands of unfamiliar words can be overwhelming. It can also be difficult to identify which words you need to learn first. This book presents words that have been carefully selected as the most important for new biology students to learn and understand. It also provides more information about each word than is often found in traditional dictionaries, giving students a more in-depth understanding of the word's meaning. The book is intended as an aid to all new students of human biology.
Nutritional TherapyDiscover how the way you eat can impact upon the affects of an illness. This book is unique, written by our health and nutritional scientists. Chapters cover: “Scope and Nature of Nutritional Therapy”, “How different factors Interact with Nutrition”, “Different Ways” and “Appropriate Therapeutic Responses for Different Health Issues” Thirty different conditions are covered from Mental Illness and Gastritis to Coeliac Disease and Osteoporosis.