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.

Lesson Structure

There are 7 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
    • 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
  4. 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
  5. 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
  6. Conducting a Weight Loss Consultation
    • The Nest Step
    • Target Marketing
    • Demand
    • Competition
    • Location
    • PBL Project -A major project
  7. 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.

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