5 Reasons to Include Meal Planning in Your Group Program

November 01, 2023

by That Clean Life

Most of us become nutrition professionals because we love to help people and want to be able to change lives for a living. It’s a labor of love and we can’t see ourselves doing anything else. But being a nutrition professional is also a job that can become exhausting and hard to scale. You can only see so many clients in a day, and working one-on-one with people full-time may take a huge toll on you mentally and emotionally. Many of the most successful nutritionists scale and maximize their impact for clients by integrating meal planning with their group nutrition programs.

Here are five reasons why it’s a strategy you might want to adopt, too:

1. Meal planning makes your participants more successful

By providing recipes and meal plans in your group nutrition program, you are essentially providing your participants with a roadmap to success. A meal plan with an itemized grocery list and recipes provides step-by-step instructions for the end result that you’re delivering with your program.

Without meal plans or recipes in your group program, your participants may feel excited at the beginning, but without a clear direction of where they’re going and how to get there, their engagement will quickly dwindle. They also might become frustrated trying to figure out what to eat on their own.

By providing direction on a weekly basis through a meal plan, you’re going to have committed participants who will rave about your services after working with you. A successful, raving client is the most powerful sales and marketing tool you will ever have!

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2. Meal planning allows you to show participants that eating healthy can be simple and fun

It’s important to meet people where they’re at so that they feel inspired to take action in your program. By incorporating meal plans and recipes, you’re catering to your participants’ wants and needs and showing them that eating healthy can be simple and fun.

For example, let’s say you are running a group program for IBS-C clients titled “Six Weeks to Better Bowel Movements”. With each meal plan you create and each recipe you include, you know those meals are doing so much more than solving their problem of being constipated. The meal plans and recipes you provide can help improve their constipation in a way that is straightforward and enjoyable.

Filter Recipe for meal planning

When creating the meal plans for your program, remember that your participants likely live a different lifestyle than you. Be mindful of how long recipes take to make and choose easily accessible ingredients. That Clean Life makes it easy to filter through recipes based on the time they take to create or the ingredients you’re looking to include or exclude so that you can quickly find meals that meet the needs of your participants’ lifestyles.

3. Meal planning in group settings boosts engagement and fosters community

Including recipes and meal plans in your group program will create engagement and help foster a sense of community. This is so important because clients will often come to you for nutrition advice, but the sense of community is what will make them stick around for the long term.

Encourage your group program participants to share food photos, their meal prep wins, and personal successes with the community. You can easily do this using the group chat feature right inside of Practice Better.

4. They simplify your program content

When it comes to creating the content for your group nutrition program, less is more. Instead of writing heaps of overwhelming paragraphs to explain what your participants need to do to achieve their health goals, use meal plans and recipes to inspire them through simple, delicious food. Empower your participants by laying out each step they’re going to take towards feeling like their best selves and keep the content you provide to them super easy to follow.

7 day Keto Challenge for meal planning
Create Program for meal planning


5. They make it more likely that participants will want to work with you again

By including meal plans and recipes in your group program, your participants feel like they’ve captured a snapshot of what goes on in your one-on-one practice. You’ve provided them with a weekly step-by-step guide on how to feel better and solve the problem they came to you for in the first place.

The meal plans and recipes from your group nutrition program will help guide your participants in the future if they ever feel like they need a reset. They have also given your participants a taste of what it is like to work with you one-on-one, so if they feel like they need more support, you will be top of mind. Your meal plans and recipes have really laid the groundwork for the work you do on an ongoing basis and created an amazing impression.

Are you ready to get those meal plans and recipes ready to go? It doesn’t need to be hard. Head over to That Clean Life for more information on how you can create beautifully branded resources for your next group program without having to spend hours on it.

PS: Interested in learning more about how easy it can be to make meal plans with That Clean Life?

Editor’s note: This post was originally published June 27, 2019 and has been revamped for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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