Offering meal planning as a service can be an extremely powerful tool in helping your clients reach their health goals. A meal plan can map out the advice you are giving into an easy-to-follow framework. But many nutrition professionals dread meal planning for their clients.
There are two main complaints we hear when it comes to meal planning in a nutrition business:
- It's too time-consuming to be profitable.
- Clients are not compliant with meal plans.
The first problem is easily solved using a professional meal planning tool like That Clean Life for Business which will help you create beautiful meal plans in minutes instead of hours.
But still, there's the frustration of building a custom meal plan for a client, only to find out later that they didn't use it!
If you want to provide meal plans that your clients will actually love, it's crucial to conduct a Meal Planning Assessment with each client. And in order to do this, you'll need a tool that will help you ask the right questions and capture the best information.
Good news! We've got you covered.
To save you time and energy, we've created you an amazing Meal Planning Assessment Tool, which you can download for free here.
And now that you have the tool, let's talk about how to use it so that you can create nutrition plans your clients will love and grow your business!
We've created the Meal Planning Assessment Tool as a Google form so that you can start using it right away. If you use a software program like Practice Better to collect information about your clients, you can easily take the questions from the Meal Planning Assessment Tool and use them to create a meal planning intake form. Alternatively, you can also use the tool to collect information from your client in-person, asking them the questions in an interview style.
Our Meal Planning Assessment Tool will help capture the information you need to create amazing plans that your clients will love. It has been designed specifically to help you better understand your client's lifestyle, food preferences, and goals/expectations.
Understanding your client's lifestyle will have a big impact on how you build a meal plan for them. Remember to start with where they are currently at. Match the meal plan and recipe suggestions to your client's current lifestyle, not the lifestyle you hope they will have after working with you.
For example: If your client is a busy professional who regularly has lunch meetings, counsel them on how to order healthy meals at restaurants and focus on providing healthy breakfast, dinner and snack recipes to fit in around their restaurant meals.
If your client is a nurse who works 12-hour shifts, focus on batch-cooking and meal prep so he or she can just relax and put their feet up at the end of a long day.
We've included several questions on the Meal Planning Assessment Tool that will help you better understand your client's lifestyle, like "How much time would you ideally want to spend in the kitchen per day?" and "How many times per week do you eat out?".
2. Food Preferences
Before starting any type of nutrition plan, understanding your client's food preferences is an absolute MUST.
If your client hates vegetables, don’t hand them a plan with a huge salad for lunch every day and hope for the best. We know you want them to eat their veggies. We know it's what they need! But this approach is not going to help.
Instead, begin by encouraging clients who are skeptical of veggies to sneak a handful of spinach into their smoothie. Maybe they’ll enjoy a plate of brussels sprouts if they’re cooked up with some bacon. Can they commit to trying just one salad recipe per week for now?
Help your clients find ways to combine foods they love with the foods you want them to eat. If their favourite breakfast is a coffee shop muffin, maybe start them with a homemade version rather than jumping right to chia pudding or green smoothies.
Our Meal Planning Assessment Tool contains several questions that will help you better understand your client's food preferences like, "What are your favourite foods?" and "Are there any foods you will not eat due to sensitivities, allergies or religious reasons?".
3. Goals & Expectations
It's so important to understand your client's goals and expectations, and keep them realistic. Receiving a meal plan is just the tip of the iceberg. It will require planning and personal accountability to actually follow it and be successful.
Some people try to go "all-in" for a couple weeks before they burn out and give up. Teaching your clients about how to go slow and steady by making small changes over time is a huge part of what will ensure they're successful in the long term.
Our Meal Planning Assessment Tool will help you ask questions that will give you a solid understanding of your client's goals and expectations including "What excites you about having or following a custom meal plan?" and "Do you want to see changes in your body weight and composition?"
How to Use The Data to Create Meal Plans Your Clients Will Love
Once you have your meal planning assessment tool set up and you are collecting the right information, be sure to take the data into consideration when building your client meal plans on That Clean Life.
Use our tags and filters to enter in your clients likes, dislikes and dietary preferences to quickly find the right meals.
Once you have found the perfect meals, simply add them to your client's plan. We will show you daily nutrient totals on the plan so you can keep it balanced. We will also automatically create your client's shopping list based on what you add to the plan:
Remember: When you are creating meal plans based on your client's unique needs, you'll get quicker results, have successful clients and your business will naturally grow.
If you aren't incorporating Meal Planning Assessments into your practice yet, or if you just need a better system, grab our free Meal Planning Assessment Tool and start using with your clients right away!
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