Becoming a Licensed or Non-Licensed Nutritionist in Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Department ofWisconsin Health Services, Division of Public Health reports that as of 2016, 69 percent of the state’s adults are overweight or obese. Breaking it down, 37 percent are overweight and 32 percent are obese. When we look at the prevalence of overweight and obesity in the population, more males fall into this category than females; Native Americans are the ethnicity with the highest rates of overweight and obesity; and adults ages 45-64 are the most overweight and obese in the state. 

The health department goes on to note that obesity and overweight is a risk factor for a number of chronic conditions. The percentage of people who have diabetes and are overweight or obese, for example, is 89 percent. Eighty-two percent of those with heart disease and kidney disease are overweight or obese. Among adults who have had a heart attack, 77 percent fall into the obese or overweight category. 

The state is actively working with hospitals and health care professionals to help prevent, screen for, manage, and treat obesity. One group of health care professionals who can help in this endeavor are nutritionists. Wisconsin nutritionists need not become certified or licensed, as do dietitians in the state. Click here For more information on Becoming a Registered Dietitian in Wisconsin. If the idea of helping your fellow Wisconsin residents become healthier and maintain good health, read on to discover how you can become a nutritionist in Wisconsin. 

Studying to Become a Wisconsin Nutritionist

You do not need to meet any educational mandates in the state of Wisconsin if you want to become a nutritionist there, as there is no regulating board overseeing nutritionists and their practice. You have many options, then, when it comes to what educational track you wish to pursue in becoming a nutritionist in Wisconsin. Some of them include:

  • Certified Nutritional Wellness Counselor Diploma – New Eden School of Natural Health and Herbal Studies, online
  • Bachelor of Science in Nutritional Sciences– University of Wisconsin, Madison
  • Master of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics – University of Wisconsin, Stout
  • Master of Science in Holistic Nutrition – American College of Healthcare Sciences, online
  • Post-Graduate Capstone Certificate in Clinical Nutrition – University of Wisconsin Madison, online

Certification for Wisconsin Nutritionists

Before you wonder why we have included a section on certification for Wisconsin nutritionists when we just told you they do not need to be certified or licensed, this is a different type of certification. This type of certification is through various professional agencies and organizations, not by the state. Obtaining a professional certification demonstrates to the public that you are educated in the profession’s highest standards. Some examples of potential professional certifications for nutritionists in Wisconsin, which can be narrowed down further by the career path you want to take, include:  

  • SNS: School Nutrition Specialist of the School Nutrition Association of Wisconsin. This credential may be earned in stages, including Level 1 certificate, Level 2 certificate, and Level 3 certificate, before moving on to the SNS credentialing exam. Each involve taking various courses in nutrition and food safety. This certification is often required for nutrition professionals working in school districts or school systems. 
  • CHC: Certified Health Coach of the National Society of Health Coaches. You must already be an allied health provider or other type of health care professional to pursue this credential.  Earning this credential involves passing an online examination.
  • CNS: Certified Nutrition Specialist of the Board of Certification for Nutrition Specialists. In order to be eligible for this credential, you need a minimum of a master’s degree in nutrition, must have completed 1000 supervised nutritional practice hours, and must pass an exam.
  • CHES: Certified Health Education Specialist of theNational Commission for Health Education Credentialing. To be eligible for this credential, you must possess a bachelor’s degree that includes coursework in education, and pass a credentialing examination. 
  • CLT: Certified Leap Therapist of Oxford Biomedical Technologies. Earning this credential involves obtaining online training in lifestyle eating and performance and passing an examination.

Salaries and Employment of Wisconsin Nutritionists

Nutritionists in Wisconsin need not be state certified in order to obtain a job. However, when you are looking at the classified ads, you might notice some nutritionist jobs say that they require state certification. These jobs are really for certified dietitians, but they have been misnamed nutritionists. The following are jobs recently posted for Wisconsin nutritionists or nutrition professionals for which state certification is not mandated:

  • Health Educator – La Crosse County, Wisconsin
    • Pay rate: $48,087 per year
    • You must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree
    • You must have experience working in community health education or public health
    • Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) preferred
    • You must have a valid Wisconsin driver’s license
  • Nutrition Specialist – Epic, Madison
    • Pay rate: $42,300 – $53,500 per year
    • You must have professional or academic experience in dietetics and nutrition 
    • You must live within 45 minutes of Verona, Wisconsin
    • You must be vaccinated against COVID-19
  • Technical Nutrition Liaison – Standard Process, Inc, Palmyra
    • Pay rate: $43,200 to $54,600 per year
    • You must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in nutrition, clinical nutrition or nutrition education
    • Prefer candidates with CNS (Certified Nutrition Specialist) credential
    • You must have a valid Wisconsin driver’s license
    • Prefer candidates with two to three years of experience in nutritional supplements or herbs
    • Prefer candidates with two years of experience with Standard Process or MediHerb supplements
  • Certified Health Coach – Healing Tree LLC, Burlington
    • Pay rate: not specified
    • You must be a Certified Health Coach (CHC)
    • You must have one year of coaching experience
    • You must carry your own liability insurance
    • You must be certified in CPR/AED
  • Nutrition Education Program Director – Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council, Inc., Lac du Flambeau
    • Pay rate: $24.70-$26.75 per hour
    • You must have at least a bachelor’s degree in dietetics, nutrition or related field
    • You must have three years of experience in nutrition management or public health nutrition
    • You must have a valid Wisconsin driver’s license
    • Prefer candidates with grant writing and funding experience
    • Prefer candidates with experience in planning and teaching
    • Prefer candidates with experience with Native American Tribal organizations or non-profit organizations