It can be hard to craft a plan that aligns with your goals when there are seemingly endless unproven trends in health that promise short-term results and/or long-term benefits. The best option is to seek a professional to design a customized strategy and keep you consistently accountable using a personalized, data-driven approach. Seem far-fetched? Technology makes it possible.
Much has been learned about food and movement when it comes to maintaining a healthy body. Although science has only scraped the surface of nutrition science, we know enough to understand that each individual requires a unique strategy for reaching body composition goals. Luckily, technology provides tools that enable individualized analysis of body composition to inform tailor-made nutritional guidance, as well as a consistent, reliable connections with professionals to offer guidance and help maintain accountability.
Know Your Numbers
The first step towards reaching a goal is determining a starting point. Unfortunately, stepping on the scale will not provide an accurate picture of body composition. Scales show one number, with little to no data on what makes up that number within the body. A true assessment of body composition means accurately measuring body fat, lean mass and bone density. The gold standard in body composition analysis is the DEXA scan using DXA technology, which provides a detailed report of regional body composition and produces comparative data across multiple scans to measure progress.
DEXA data are not the only numbers necessary for crafting a game plan. A Resting Metabolic Rate test shows how many calories the body burns at rest, leading to a better understanding of your unique metabolism (how your body uses – or stores – the food you consume for energy). These numbers serve as a guide for creating a nutrition plan that – along with exercise – will help reach body composition goals. Whether it be losing fat, gaining muscle, or both, knowing your unique metabolism is essential.
Information is good, but knowledge of how to apply information is powerful. Enter: The Nutrition Coach. A Nutrition Coach is an enormously beneficial person to have on your team to reach health and fitness goals. With a vast understanding of how the body works, they are experts in metabolism and the effect of food on energy transfer and storage. Meeting with a Nutrition Coach allows them to assess your personalized data and discuss goals in order to devise a nutrition plan that is flexible to your lifestyle and preferences. From there, a coach helps measure results over time and tweaks a plan based on progress.
One obvious drawback: It’s unrealistic to meet with a coach in-person each week. However, thanks to technology, web-based platforms maintain the coach-client relationship in real-time and can benefit a client tremendously. Online Nutrition Coaching allows a coach to consistently be in touch with a client through emails, app-based food logging, video conferencing sessions, or any other software that can virtually connect a coach with a client.
While this may seem overwhelming, consistent, reliable support is often essential to creating lasting behavior change. Other benefits to Online Nutrition Coaching include:
A key to adhering to any long-term plan is accountability. While the initial assessment with a Nutrition Coach can leave a client feeling motivated to change, the effects may wear off in the weeks after an appointment. Online Nutrition Coaching puts an accountability partner in a client’s back pocket for times when extra support is needed.
Not everyone following a plan should be expected to become an expert in nutrition. Access to a Nutrition Coach in times of uncertainty around an ingredient or general questions on food can be incredibly helpful for a client who is new to nutrition.
Online Nutrition Coaching often means an invitation into a community of like-minded individuals who prioritize health. Becoming a part of a community allows for extra support and accountability that can increase likelihood of sticking to a plan and achieving results.
Let Tech be your Friend
While some aspects of technology can be overwhelming, we are lucky to be in an era where these advancements can provide access to resources to benefit our lives. The health and fitness industry is harnessing technology to bring individuals accurate body composition and metabolic data, and allow for virtual client-coach partnerships through Online Nutrition Coaching.
Learn more about Nutrition Coaching and how Composition ID experts can help you reach your goals.