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How to Select the Right Health Coach for You

by
Kelly Johnston, MS, RD
Health Coach
December 2, 2021

It’s no secret that the things we often know we “should be doing for our health” are typically the first things to fall off of our lengthy to-do lists. Whether it’s taking our daily vitamins, fitting in regular exercise, sleeping for eight hours a night, or even just drinking enough water—foundational habits for good health so commonly fall to the wayside. That’s why a Parsley Health Complete Care membership includes an equal number of visits with a clinician and a health coach, who partner together to create your personalized health plan and ensure that you stick with it.

Your health coach is a key player on your Parsley Health care team: they support you in four main aspects of your health including your nutrition, stress reduction practices, sleep hygiene habits , and physical activity regimen. Sounds great, right? But how do you decide which health coach is right for you? Here are the key questions to ask when embarking on your Parsley Health journey so you can feel most supported in making the necessary changes you need to feel like your best self.

What is the health coach’s area of clinical expertise?

The first thing to think about when deciding on which Parsley health coach to work with is examining what areas of clinical expertise a coach has the most experience with and how they align with your top health goals. Our team of coaches has expertise in supporting members managing chronic conditions ranging from autoimmune diseases and digestive issues to hormonal imbalances and metabolic health concerns. Each has slightly different specialties which can be clearly identified when checking out the coach’s “Clinical Expertise” by heading to their bio.

To find the coach that has the expertise that best matches your health history, browse the bios of the health coaches that work with the clinician you’ve selected. It’s important to note that while coaches list their top areas of interest in these categories, all coaches on the Parsley Health team are well versed with our library of clinician-led Parsley protocols and equipped to support our members in their journey to healing.

What type of credentials and training certifications does a health coach have?

The health coaches at Parsley hold respected credentials including Registered Dietitians, Certified Nutrition Specialists, Master’s degrees in nutrition, or designated certifications in health coaching from accredited institutes and universities. Each of our coaches has expertise in behavior change, habit formation , nutrition, and functional lifestyle support.


When selecting your health coach, it’s important to get clear on the type of support you’re looking for. Many of our coaches hold additional certifications that might speak more specifically to you and your journey that you can locate under the “Credentials” and “Training” sections of their bio . For example, you may be interested in exploring your relationship with food and choose a coach who has a certification in Intuitive Eating or a focus on mindful eating or the mind/body connection . If you need support tailoring a medically recommended therapeutic diet to your treatment plan, you may want to select one of our coaches that has completed specific training in the dietary protocol you need support with such as low FODMAP or the Autoimmune Paleo Diet .

If you’re uncertain as to the exact support you’ll be needing in your membership from the health coaching lens, rest assured that our team has been handpicked to complement our root cause medicine approach with our members’ health needs in mind.

What are the health coach’s personal interests and hobbies?

In order for you to feel well supported by your Parsley Health coach throughout your membership, it’s essential to feel a strong, positive connection with them. Before even meeting with your health coach, there are some ways to get an idea of whether you and your coach might click.

When checking out the health coach bios, make sure to note their perspective on what makes them most excited about working with Parsley Health members, what they want members to ask them about, and where you'd be most likely to find them. You might find a way they’ve shared or worded something that really resonates with you and your lifestyle. Are you a mom and hoping to work with a coach that's a mom too? Look for a mention of their kiddos in their bio. Are you an outdoor enthusiast, fitness fanatic, avid yogi, or animal lover? See if a coach has a similar affinity.

By the very nature of it, health coaching is extremely personal. As your coach encourages digging deep and challenging daily habits, a unique connection is formed and that relationship can be strengthened when we feel we’re being provided the space we need with someone who can best understand and relate to our lifestyle.


Still feeling unsure on who to select as your health coach?

Not to worry! Meet with your Parsley clinician for your initial medical visit and ask them which coach they’d recommend for you based on your top health goals and the personalized plan they’re putting together for you. After meeting with your clinician, we recommend setting up a visit with your health coach within 1-2 weeks following that appointment so you can keep up the momentum in implementing the doctor’s plan while having the support you need from your health coach along the way.


by
Kelly Johnston, MS, RD
Health Coach

Kelly Johnston is a registered Dietitian Nutritionist with six years of experience in the health and wellness field, four of which have been spent right here at Parsley Health supporting members with everything from gut issues and autoimmune disease to cardiometabolic health concerns and fertility. She holds a Master's of Science in Nutrition from one of the leading science-based natural medicine schools in the country, Bastyr University, and completed her dietetic internship at Sea Mar Community Health Center in Seattle, WA.

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