Presently, people are moving from orthodox medicine to alternative medical practices, such as acupuncture and homeopathy. This trend has caused an increase in the number of medical students venturing into the natural health profession.
A certified natural health professional (CNHP) certification is awarded to individuals practicing natural medicine, such as massage therapists, chiropractors, and yoga instructors.
These professionals use less invasive methods to cure ailments, focusing on the whole body parts rather than the affected area. For example, massage therapists use various methods to apply pressure to their clients’ soft tissues and muscles to relax.
On the other hand, chiropractors manipulate and adjust various joints in an individual’s body to realign the spine or bones and provide relief. In comparison, yoga instructors lead training and exercise sessions for interested persons.
Natural health practices incorporate a holistic perspective regarding medical treatments to provide relief and focus on the whole body parts rather than the affected areas to promote natural health.
The following are the criteria for acquiring a CNHP certification. You can read about CNHP certification here by clicking on the link. That way, you can discover how to begin the process of becoming a certified natural health professional.
Steps to Acquiring a CNHP
Suppose you prefer the unorthodox and natural branch of medicine and would want to get a CNHP certification, you’ll need to do the following:
The educational requirements for getting certified as a natural health professional varies between the two certifying bodies: the American Council of Holistic Medicine (ACHM) and the National Association of Certified Natural Health Professionals Incorporated (CNHP).
Certification by ACHM
To become a certified natural health professional under the American Council of Holistic Medicine (ACHM), you must have a bachelor’s degree plus 120 hours of experience as a natural health practitioner.
Consider earning a degree in natural health from some universities and colleges. Alternatively, you can also get a degree in related fields, such as behavioral science, nutrition, or women’s health.
There’s no prescribed course you must study, although you might want to consider some helpful fields, like psychology, physiology, human anatomy, chemistry, sociology, or nutrition.
Certification by CNHP
Aspiring natural health professionals must take the five seminars organized by the National Association of Certified Natural Health Professionals Incorporated before becoming certified.
Although not a strict requirement, the organization likes applicants with high school diplomas or something similar. Besides the seminars, you’ll also combine hands-on natural health technique application with lectures.
Some areas that the lectures focus on include bodywork, body systems, and nutrition. You’ll also need to complete a practicum.
Get a Job
Although the ACHM requires prior experience in the industry before becoming certified, CNHP doesn’t.
The experience includes those earned through various jobs and internships while earning a degree or working in the natural medicine field after your bachelor’s degree program.
For instance, potential natural health consultants can work in clinics or health clubs, health food stores, weight loss centers, whole food markets, wellness centers, and chiropractors’ offices.
A certification indicates dedication and professional competence to a field while also increasing employment opportunities.
As we mentioned before, you’ll need to complete the five mandated seminars before earning a CNHP certification. However, the certification process is a bit more complex for ACHM.
It’d be best to research the continuing education requirements needed for maintaining the certification. While there aren’t federal or state guidelines regarding the requirements for retaining the natural health consultants’ certification online and offline, each certifying organization works with its certificate maintenance requirements.
The CNHP mandates that renewal candidates should attend one capstone seminar each year.
Get an Advanced Degree
Lots of not-for-profit and for-profit institutions of higher learning have programs for aspiring health professionals.
So, consider enrolling in a graduate certificate program or master’s degree in holistic medicine, naturopathy, or alternative medicine. Ensure the program is accredited by a reputable organization, like the Association of Accredited Naturopathic Medical Colleges (AANMC).
CNHP provides courses covering five general health knowledge areas: iridology, practicum, bodywork, body systems, and nutrition. They also offer specialized classes, like reflexology, herbal medicine, homeopathy, and aromatherapy.
The ACMA offers a different certification for natural health professionals with 45 hours of experience and a master’s degree or a higher degree, diplomates with a doctoral or medical degree plus three years of relevant experience, and clinical practitioners with a doctoral or medical degree.
However, to become eligible for the license, you must have completed an accredited naturopathic medical school program and passed the Naturopathic Physicians Licensing Exam (NPLEX).
Only 22 states in the US license naturopathic medicine and practitioners under these states must fulfill continuing education requirements each year.
Nevertheless, you can get a holistic medicine certification without this stress through online education platforms like AcademyEpic.
Functions of a Certified Natural Health Professional
One of the philosophical statements of the National Association of Certified Natural Health Professionals (CNHP) is that natural health specialists provide information, medical attention, and holistic health care in less invasive ways.
As a natural health professional, you can work as an educator or run your private practice with an area of expertise in acupuncture, herbology, nutrition, etcetera.
However, you’ll have to be knowledgeable about alternatives to orthodox medicine, using available natural resources to alleviate medical issues.
You can also become certified as a naturopathic doctor and work in health centers, hospitals, private practices, or clinics to treat hormonal imbalances, chronic pain, fertility problems, obesity, allergies, and heart diseases.
Naturopathic doctors combine traditional healing methods and naturally based treatments with modern science. According to PayScale.com, naturopathic doctors’ median annual salary is $63,646.
Related Alternative Careers
Many career opportunities exist under natural health medicine, and one of them is exercise physiology. As an exercise physiologist, you’ll create fitness plans for patients recovering from a condition or disease to improve their cardiovascular system.
Another career option is athletic training, which entails diagnosing and treating injuries resulting from strenuous physical activity. You’ll create plans for rehabilitating the injured part while also providing immediate care.
However, you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in either of these fields and a license if you decide to become an athletic trainer.
To get a CNHP certification, you’ll need to meet their requirements and attend all five mandatory seminars. One other way aspiring natural health consultants can become certified is through the ACHM.
While the ACHM rules are more stringent than CNHP, both organizations demand continuing education to maintain the certification.
Consider getting a CNHP certification online from AcademyEpic and become a certified natural health professional without stress. With quality lectures and mentoring from our experienced natural health specialists, you’re on your way to becoming a certified natural health professional sooner than you imagine.