Health Coach Institute (BHC Program): an honest review


I graduated with a health coach certification from Health Coach Institute (HCI) in October 2017. I completed the Become a Health Coach (BHC) program, beginning in May 2017. I also attended their November 2017 HCI Live event in Dallas, Texas. I also completed part of the HCI “Advanced Nutrition for Health Coaches” training and some of the Life Coach certification training. I did not finish either of those, however, because I am no longer interested in pursuing this as a career. However, I was employed as a health coach and worked with a small handful of private clients, so I do have professional experience to speak from.

This is my honest review of my entire experience with the HCI BHC program, including:

  • Cost and value
  • Accreditation and certification
  • Content- what you learn
  • Skills labs, coaching practice, and success calls
  • Overall learning experience
  • HCI Live event experience
  • Summary of pros and cons

…as well as specific and practical suggestions for those considering a pivot into health coaching. I also include helpful reading suggestions throughout this post for those not yet ready to commit the time or money required to become a certified health coach.

NOTE: If you have any questions or comments about BHC or HCI after reading this post, please leave a comment below and I will answer ASAP, even if by the time you read this it’s been several months or years since I wrote the review. I am very happy to answer any questions or help you make this decision, as I would have loved that guidance when I made the decision. Same goes for my thorough and honest review of the eCornell Plant-Based Nutrition certification, which I still get questions and comments on to this day.

Let’s begin!


The total cost of the program is $4,500. They advertise $5,000 but when I signed up there was a $500 discount for paying up front. If something like that doesn’t exist right now and you are interested in completing a certification through Health Coach Institute, use my HCI BHC referral code: 6RFFX4YR. Bottom line: don’t pay full price.

As for the value of the cost: personally, I think it’s not there. The training, which I will get into in greater detail soon, is extremely mediocre and borderline bad at times.

The program lasts 6 months, with content delivered one week at a time, but you can take up to one year to complete it. I finished in 6 months, so I essentially paid $750 per month. Looking back, knowing what I know now, I would have never paid $750 per month for what I received. Keep reading for specifics on that.


I graduated in October 2017 (despite the November date they printed on my certification) and it is now January 2018 and I have still not received my hard copy certification in the mail. [update: as of March 2018, I still have not received it]

It took a month after certification before I decided to contact them about this, wondering where it was, and it was then brought to my attention that it was my responsibility to contact them for my certification. They did not automatically send it, even though my account shows that I completed everything. This was super annoying.

The paper doesn’t actually matter though. Neither does their PDF version of the certification, which looks like this:


In the real world, as I have since learned, nobody cares if you have this certification or not. There is currently no law saying you have to be certified to practice as a health coach. It can add some credibility in some circumstances, but like a college degree, nobody is going to ask you to prove that you have it. When I worked as a health coach for a local nonprofit, they verbally asked me if I had gone through any training, I said yes, and that was the end of it.

HCI is accredited by CCE, which adds additional credibility to the training. However, unless you plan to take the exam to become a CPC (Certified Professional Coach), this does not matter either.

With that said, if you are very serious about entering this career and hope to make a living as a coach, it probably doesn’t hurt having the accreditation behind you. But it alone isn’t worth the price tag of this program.


The entire program is 100% online. The program is broken up into 4 “pillars.” Each pillar is further broken up into weeks. There is a multiple choice exam at the end of each pillar. Each exam is excruciatingly easy.

Here is a screenshot of what the online learning environment looks like. All lectures are powerpoint-style slides with a voiceover. If you’re like me and prefer people to get to the point, you can watch all videos in 1.5x or 2x speed. Thank God.

BHC homepage

Pillar 1 is Nutrition for Health Coaches. It is 6 weeks with an additional 1 “bonus week” material.

When I enrolled in BHC, I thought I would learn the actual science behind nutrition. Instead, BHC teaches more about “how” to eat, or “who you are” when you’re eating. Tips like drink water, chew your food, take deep breaths, etc, fill this pillar. Very little actual nutrition information is given.

One thing I did not like about this pillar (ok, basically everything) was how it also included some straight up pseudoscience. The only dietary theories explored were “Blood Type Theory” (which in my opinion is total bullshit) and some other theory I can’t remember right now, but which was also really stupid.

The entire premise of “nutrition for health coaches” is that there is no one-size-fits-all diet and that everybody is different, so we need to use our intuition to figure out what’s best for our unique body. Beyond that, very little nutrition information was given. I found this very frustrating because they were basically saying it’s ok to eat anything in any quantity, as long as you feel good doing it. Cocaine feels fucking fantastic and you can even lose weight doing it, but that doesn’t make it good for you! However much I agree with the idea that there is no one-size-fits-all solution, their logic was flawed and they should have provided more science and research.

Each pillar comes with a plethora of handouts, some useful and others not. Here is a screenshot of the handouts section, each available in PDF and DOC formats. You can see the titles of some of the handouts. The very gimmicky handouts like “secret 7” and “how to learn 100 dietary theories in 10 minutes” were very silly. So much garbage material here. I did not end up keeping or using any of it. Most of the handouts were fluff.

pillar one handouts

Basically, all the “nutrition” information boils down to a few key bullet points:

  • Eat fat and protein with every meal to keep blood sugar balanced
  • Eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full, and chew your food
  • Drink water
  • Try not to eat a lot of processed food or too much sugar
  • Be nice to yourself and don’t stress

Other than that, you are expected to experiment and figure out what is best for your body. Personally, I think this is a very lackluster nutrition education. Neither of the teachers, Carey and Stacey, is a scientist, dietician, nutritionist, or otherwise really qualified to teach this stuff, so it makes sense that their “science” was rocky at times and they had a slight “woo woo” undertone to most of what they delivered.

Also, for anyone who is plant-based, vegan, or vegetarian, let’s just say you will disagree with most of what they teach. HCI seems to consider ALL diets valid. I find this problematic. (Read my eCornell Plant-Based Nutrition Certification: an honest review)

Overall, I was extremely disappointed with this pillar.

Pillar 2 is Transformational Coaching Skills. Pillar 2 is 14 long weeks, also with “bonus week” material.

Since I already had a pretty strong nutrition background coming into this program, this was the part of BHC that I was most excited about. BHC promises to teach you the psychology of habit change and really focus on the brain science behind why we do what we do and how to “hack” that to get results for our health. It also promises to teach you how to coach. Sounds great, right?

Unfortunately, BHC did not deliver on any of that (Instead, I recommend you read The Willpower Instinct if this topic interests you). The entirety of pillar 2 was a step-by-step walkthrough of their “90-day Total Transformation” program, a gimmicky program they continually say is what helped Carey build her “six-figure coaching business.”

The done-for-you program would be perfect for someone trying to lose weight who is more of a “feeler” type than “thinker” type. It was very flowery and loaded with manipulative “seeding” marketing crap to try to upsell your client on more services later. Not impressed with that. There were entire sessions whose sole purpose was to coax your client into signing up for more sessions with you, not benefit your client. There was also a lot of weird borderline spiritual shit that just didn’t resonate with me.

Pillar 2 is really just “how to deliver session X.” It’s just a bunch of scripts that are sometimes poorly worded, poorly formatted, and completely unrelated to any health concern other than weight loss. The 90-day program is 12 weeks, so we learned 12 scripts. There is also one “Closing The Deal” script, which you deliver before the 90-day program. Its purpose is to sell your services and gain clients.

As for the psychology of habit change and neuroscience, those were practically nonexistent as well (Read The Power of Habit for great information on that). Pillar 2 did not go into “how” to coach either. It focused solely on their specific scripts.

The pillar 2 bonus material was a handy question guide though, which was probably the most (if only) useful handout in the entire program. Here it is, for free:

silver bullet

Those are the basic coaching questions you learn. Pillar 2 can basically be broken down into a few bullet points. None of this was said explicitly (annoying, because in my opinion, explicit info like this would have been very helpful), but it’s more or less what I gathered from the scripts:

  • Don’t ask “why” questions
  • Dig deep with your client–keep asking questions until you get to an emotional trigger
  • Don’t give advice- your client intrinsically knows the answer for themselves
  • Don’t talk about yourself in a session- coaching is all about your client

Pillar 2 was very disappointing, considering it was just a bunch of shitty scripts that only applied to weight loss.

They emphasized how you should listen to your client’s needs though, and go off script when necessary. However, they give no help on how to do that. They don’t actually teach you how to coach or what kinds of questions to ask (other than the handout above, which they didn’t give until the very end AFTER you’d already delivered the 90-day program to your practice clients). Again, they just teach scripts. Lame.

Pillar 3 is Personal Growth. It is 5 weeks long.

This pillar was actually kind of interesting, however, if you’ve ever read any self-help book ever, it was nothing new. Here is a screenshot of the available handouts, which summarize what you learn pretty well:

pillar 3

The problem with pillar 3 was that they talked about overcoming your negative relationship with money a LOT. This is definitely a helpful topic to explore (if it applies to you), but it was very clear what they were doing: seeding you to buy their “Master” program! They even said so, several times, how you should “invest” in yourself by furthering your training. So in my opinion, pillar 3 was like this huge sales pitch for their next level course.

Speaking about that, this is a tactic they used throughout the entire program. They’d say things like “this is a very advanced technique, but you will learn about it in our advanced master training…” Barf.

It got kind of exhausting hearing about how much money Carey made in her “six-figure coaching business” and how we would learn all the “advanced coaching techniques” in their master training. It made the whole program feel very gimmicky, like I’d paid $4,500 for a 6-month sales pitch for a $12k program (a program I obviously did not sign up for because screw HCI).

Pillar 4 is Proven Marketing and Business Systems. It is 6 weeks and optional for graduation.

This turned out to be the best pillar of them all! Here is a screenshot of what you learn in this pillar:

pillar 4

Since I have a strong marketing, business, and sales background, nothing in this pillar was new to me, but I was able to recognize how valuable it is for those who have no business or marketing experience. (Read Wellpreneur if you want modern business/marketing info)

The only annoying thing about it was they kept saying how great it was and how “no other training program teaches you this.” Carey and Stacey are very self-congratulatory people and after 6 months, you really want them to shut the fuck up about it.


Every week of the training, you had to complete a “skills lab” call with another student. You find your skills lab partner either online in the learning portal (I never did this) or in the private Facebook group (this is where most people talked). Each week the skills lab was different and you could work with a different partner if you wanted to.

For the first pillar, the skills labs were more or less conversations about what you’d “learned,” but using awkward scripted coaching-type questions. All skills labs had specific scripts to use. For pillar 2, the skills labs were practicing delivering the 90-day program.

The main problem with the skills labs was that there was no oversight or feedback. So you never knew how you did or where you could improve. I find this very problematic because for 6 months, you practice-coach one another without ever knowing how you’re doing or how you could improve. How could you possibly get better or really learn this way?

In the past, someone from HCI would listen in on your calls and then give you feedback after your lab, but for some reason, they do not offer this anymore. Probably because it costs too much to listen in on 250 calls per week! (There were 500 people in my May 2017 cohort.)

So as for coaching practice, there really isn’t anything in BHC that’s any better than literally talking to a friend.

You do get 8 “success calls” with a “success coach” during the program. I only used 4 of mine because they were that awful. Success Calls consist of you, 3 other students, 1 success coach, and they last 50 minutes. Each person gets 10 minutes to be coached and then gets to hear the other people getting coached. I never found these useful. This was time to get coached on personal stuff, health or life related, or just to be coached through your massive insecurity about being a coach (everyone felt this, including me, because BHC poorly prepared us). But the success calls were too short and too public to really get very far or deep.

Part of the graduation requirement is that you walk 2 practice clients through the 90-Day Total Transformation program, so technically, this is also practice coaching. However, again, there is no oversight or feedback given, and since you only learn scripts and not actually how to coach, these sessions could be very hit or miss!

There were also “Office Hours,” a 2-hour bi-weekly call with Carey and Stacey, where they answer questions live. You may or may not get picked. I stopped listening in after a few months because they never proved useful and the questions from fellow students were stupid, no offense. There’s nothing worse than listening to someone literally cry about how insecure they feel about themselves or how they have no money (probably the two biggest things people talked about). I’m just not interested in hearing that shit and it was not helpful to my development as a coach.


Overall, the best thing that came out of my experience is that I “met” someone who is now a very close friend. We have not met in person, but we continue to talk online/phone weekly. So that’s cool. (She is no longer coaching either, and has similar feelings about the program.)

Other than that, the lack of actual teaching and one-on-one time with coaches made the whole experience feel like I was just being herded through a money-making machine for Carey and Stacey. Almost every week, they would “seed” us into their master training program and remind us of how great they are. Very little actual education was provided. It felt gross and I’m a little embarrassed I did this program at all.


To be honest, I left halfway through the first day. The event was a total waste of time and money. It is one huge sales pitch for their master training. I would never recommend this event or go to another one. It was the worst “conference” I have ever been to. Not a SINGLE educational component. You wouldn’t think it possible, but literally the entire thing was a huge scam. Maybe by now, you’re starting to notice this trend about BHC? Yeah. Save your money.



  • 100% online
  • Potentially meet like-minded people in private Facebook group
  • CCE Accredited
  • Short: 6 months, but you have a year to finish
  • You can watch powerpoint videos in double-time (2X) to get it over with!
  • Excellent business and marketing material


  • Nothing is science-backed, or at least no evidence is provided
  • You never learn “psychology of habit change,” as promised
  • You never learn any neuroscience, as promised
  • The “success calls” are the only one-on-one you get, and you just get 10 minutes
  • Expensive at $4,500
  • No one-on-one teaching or oversight
  • All lectures are powerpoint style (YAWN)
  • You never meet your teachers or have actual interaction with them
  • You never get feedback about your coaching from a trained coach
  • You only learn scripts


Save your money. Read Co-Active Coaching (THE BIBLE of coaching books) if you are interested in being a coach. I learned more from that book than I did from the entire 6-months I “studied” with Health Coach Institute. If there is one coaching book to read, it would be that one.

If you are interested in health coaching specifically, then just brush up on your nutrition online as well. For nutrition book ideas, I have a book list you might be interested in. I also completed the much better Plant-Based Nutrition Certification through eCornell, which I review here.

Health coaching is a sales job. Know that going into it. If you plan to have a private practice, you will be selling yourself. Constantly. There’s no way around it. You will also probably not make a lot of money because, at the end of the day, hardly anyone hires a personal health coach. And the people who need it most can’t afford it. Keep this in mind. It’s an uphill battle that you can technically win, but for me, the effort just wasn’t worth it.

If you choose to find employment as a health coach, you will be LUCKY to make $40,000 a year with a company (before taxes). The pay is total shit. Prepare for that. I was paid $20 per hour but only given 6 hours per week. And I considered myself lucky to have an actual job doing this.

Have you completed this certification course? What did you think? I would love to hear about your experience! If you have any other questions, post in the comments below and I will answer 🙂

Thanks for reading and best wishes on your journey!

Namaste 🙂

Still interested in HCI?

Use my HCI BHC referral code: 6RFFX4YR to save $ at Health Coach Institute. 

61 thoughts on “Health Coach Institute (BHC Program): an honest review

  1. Oh my god! I have just finished Pillar 1 from the Dec 2017. How painful. So disappointed in the program. Very, very basic. Apart from the content I also found the online platform extremely clunky and not user friendly. I’ve got a business background in Sales, Biz Dev in Tech and have had a great interest in Health. I feel I joined one big group hug of broken people who need constant reconfirmation about everything they do. Definitely not worth the money. A course in nutrition combined with a life coaching course is a much better option if someone wants to be a Health Coach. I’m bored of this course, so tired of those boring PowerPoint slides which I’m just letting run in the background whilst I get on with my life accepting I’ve wasted a lot of money on that course…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so so sorry you’re having the same disappointing experience! Is it too late to get your money back, or is your 30 day window over? Describing your “tribe mates” as a group of “broken people” is sadly spot on. That’s exactly how it seemed to me as well. I think HCI attracts (dare I say prey on?) women who are confused, lost, and at an unhealthy place in life. The best thing about the PowerPoint slides is that you can watch/listen to them in double time… That’s the only thing that got me through the goddamn course. Lol;


  2. Thanks for the “raw” feedback… I have been searching online for ANY details on HCI and have found almost none, until you =)
    I got suspicious when on their website, under “Our Students” tab, they show pics and bio’s of a bunch of grads. I then separately searched for these “grad” websites, three of them said they graduated from Institute for Integrated Nutrition (IIN) and do not mention BHC or HCI… what is that about?
    BTW: if Pillar 4 was good, did you like the website they built for you? – Is this it????

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Omg yes I totally forgot to mention that I did the same thing! I looked up all the grads and also noticed that nobody mentioned HCI on their websites, and instead talked about IIN. I should have listened to my gut on that one. Very weird.

      As for the website, they “give” it to you then you pay $39/month for it. No thanks! This is a free WordPress site. I didn’t even LOOK at the website they gave. But the time they released it, I was already totally over health coaching.


    2. I used to be an Online Marketing Consultant back in 2012- this is where I sold but did not provide the services personally. I know what a good website costs to have designed for you. It was a big factor for my decision to purchase the program. It was a huge disappointment a very low quality site and shame on me for not asking for a sample prior to my making the decision. However, they would not have been able to show an example because they sold the concept before one was ever designed.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am so sorry to hear that! I never even asked for my website because by then I was already so disappointed and had heard stories like yours. How did you end up making your website?


  3. I stared IIN but got out int he first week. They have a similar curriculum. I was able to browse the 1st pillar. But all of the lectures are via video. No hardcore tests, which I found odd (but not upset about). There are quizzes and tests which are not graded… odd again. How do you get feedback if no one is looking at your work? Most of the information I already knew since I have been researching plant-based nutrition on my own. You can also find the same info on youtube. The cost for this 1-year course is also 5k. But, there was a $500 if you did not want the iPad they were offering. Yeah, Ok. I did not need an Ipad. Nice Marketing tactic though. Oh, and they also offered a website that you would eventually pay for. None of this sat well with me. My intuition told me to get out. What they are offering is not worth $5000. Sorry for the rant. When you mentioned INN it struck a nerve and I just want people to be aware of what they are getting themselves into … from my perspective 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your comment! I have heard a similar review of IIN, but of course, I cannot speak from personal experience on that. Good thing you listened to your gut and decided not to continue with the program–I wish I’d done the same with HCI. Thanks again for sharing!


  4. I agree with much of what you say here. A few big disappointments for me: 1.The lack of real content when it comes to nutrition. 2. I spent an entire weekend in what amounted to a very long commercial to sign up for how to REALLY be a Health Coach (wasn’t that what I already paid for?) Side note: When I researched a couple of the folks they produced on stage (at the live event) who were making the big bucks, one was a “High Performance” Personal Trainer – which is code for charging a ton of money to yuppies in New York. 3rd. I was told we would get a website at completion. That was a joke. It was a terrible site and I ended up spending hours of my time and money creating my own.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Susan,

      Thanks for your comment and for sharing your experience. I’m sorry to hear your experience was similarly disappointing. Yes–that “free” 72 hour access to their site did turn out to be promotional content that did little other than selling us the program. I’d almost forgotten about that! Thanks for sharing, so others can be more informed when weighing options.

      I am curious– did you end up pursuing this as a career? Personally, I am no longer in the industry.


  5. Thank you Ash! This was a great review and it definitely mirrors my feelings as well. I just started in December and the honeymoon phase is nearly over for me. Thanks to this review I just canceled my travel plans to their conference. You saved me a ton of cash. I’ll finish the course, and I’ll definitely take your advice on the other sources to read to fill in the gaps. I’m still very passionate about becoming a health coach. I wish I had read your review before plunking down $4500, but I’ll chalk this up to lesson learned. I have met a ton of wonderful people on line through this experience and so I’ll take the good with the bad and keep it moving. Thanks again for this valuable review.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are welcome- I’m glad you found it valuable. Thanks for sharing your experience. I’m sorry to hear you’re having a similar experience. Real bummer. But the fact that you’re still interested in the health coach track is positive!


      1. Can I just say that this part of your blog had me rolling ” Carey and Stacey are very self-congratulatory people and after 6 months, you really want them to shut the fuck up about it.” LOL. I DIED.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. Your blog has been extremely helpful. I had come so close to registering for the course. Better business Bureau has only good things to say about Stacey and Carey’s health coach institute. It sounds like a large investment for nothing in return.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hey there – I’m just waiting for my call from someone at HCI (so that I can ask questions about the program) and doing some review searches and came across your blog. Thank-you! I have a M.Sc. in Personalised Nutrition and I’m looking for a program that will complete the coaching aspect of my studies so I can start working as a nutritionist/health coach. Have you come across any good programs for completing the coaching/practical side of this career?


    1. I am just reading all of this for the first time, as I have been looking in to health coaching. You may want to check out the National Society of Health Coaches. I started looking in to their certification, and after reading this blog I will definitely return my focus in that direction! Their certification costs a fraction of what these other courses charge. They are only for health care and allied health care practitioners. Their program appears to focus only on the coaching aspect, because you have already spent hours and hours learning your health care field’s educational requirements. I am a nurse their certification seems to make much more sense to me, although I still have research to do.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. OMG Ash – you are so freakin’ awesome!! I am supremely grateful for your review!!

    Something in my gut kept telling me to wait. I wanted to believe it wasn’t crap. I wanted to get started on something. Last year I listened to their “sales pitch” ahem… “info session”? Actress Carey was out so someone filled in – AWFUL. Very unprofessional, no real substance.

    I later talked to Valerie — she’s nice, and kind of fluffed it over like it was no big deal. It made me think maybe I was making too much out of it.

    Still I waited – thank God.

    A couple of weeks ago Rosemary called me to see if I was still interested – what a flake!! She had NO CLUE about anything I asked. Again, I thought, well maybe she’s just not good with people or Q & A.

    First Pillar should be: TRUST YOUR GUT!!

    Instead, I checked out the 72-hour sample program. What a joke. It’s so basic – it’s like – hey breathe good air, don’t drink toilet water. Sorry – getting pretty crass myself. I actually fell asleep during most of it, and only got jolted awake when Carey did one of her loud cackles. Not even a creative slide presentation.

    Another RED FLAG came when Rosemary said I couldn’t get in touch with graduates – and they had none in my area. But that I could reach out to people AFTER I signed up. Hmmm.

    BTW, I just calculated how much they made in revenue on the 500 people who enrolled in your cohort – at $4500 a pop: Drum roll please… $2,250,000 – that’s $2.25 MILLION!!!!! Where’s Mini-Me when you need him?

    And they can’t make an appearance in the training modules or make it professional?
    Plus, what happened to all of the Nutrition Experts they claim are part of the program?

    This definitely sounds like IIN. I ran from that one – grateful I didn’t sign up. Their sample program was Joshua Rosenthal – founder – giving a welcome speech to a live group. Huh?

    I kept thinking I must be missing something. So many people I know either personally or ran into online had gone through their training. Some actually said it was good – but I’ve no idea how much knowledge they already had – I personally geek out on this stuff. For most people, they failed at it unless they also had additional training or a different health/wellness background going into it, or sold additional products and had a great online presence. It’s like The Emperor’s New Clothes. Everyone was just drinking the Kool-Aid (sorry if I offend anyone who did take the courses).

    I’ve made plenty of huge mistakes myself – one I’m paying for still. They make it sound so ah-mazing.
    It’s almost hypnotic, and they do it again and again to loads of people.

    This makes me MAD- there are way too many scammers out there who hide behind computers and make huge money for crap. Though I’m surprised Stacey and Carey actually had a “sales pitch” for their live event too. Pretty damn ballsy. Reminds me of those House Flipping “FREE” Seminars at hotels. That is just wrong. I’m seriously contemplating how to start a whistle-blowing site with the tagline: “You can run but you can’t hide” – lol.

    That’s lazy, and honestly – stealing.

    Thank you for offering your thoughts and a place to offer ours. Hope I didn’t take up too much “real estate” here – I’m just disappointed the program didn’t pan out – but jumping for joy that I found out in time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha I LOVE your comment, thank you! So glad you listened to your gut on this one. You certainly saved yourself a lot of money and disappointment.

      And haha I totally went to one of those “free” house flipping seminars about 5 years ago because I wanted to see how scammy they really were (it didn’t disappoint lol, so scammy!).


  9. For those of you who are researching…here are two that may be of interest:

    Dr. Sears – though sometimes controversial because he’s a holistic MD- is cheaper to get started ($2K range) and you can specialize in different areas, and if I remember correctly, you can get real, honest, advanced training, plus a real website with portal and ongoing support after graduation. I don’t recall how long each specialization is – but this program has been around for decades. I also did talk with one graduate who was a teacher by day and she said it was a good program for her. It sounds rather basic, but people can help those who need guidance for how to eat if they’ve never been healthy. I never did connect with the second. For an overall program, it looks good, though I’d like something more holistic personally.

    Institute of Functional Medicine Coaching Academy. (Around $6K). Cohorts are about 2x per year. Next one is in September. Program has been going for about a year. The program itself is a YEAR and is created by MDs, PhDs (Psychologists, etc.) including Dr. Mark Hyman. You can ask to go through an actual coaching session as a patient/client with one of their student coaches to see if it makes sense. I’m talking now with the student coach. The kicker is, you have to have some sort of Allied Health or Professional Health background, be a massage trainer, personal trainer, yoga instructor, etc. Or, get permission.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for taking time to reply to everyone’s posts. Really great!

        I also follow Eben Pagan – his team is super. He’s genuine. He’s not a workaholic. His coaching program is designed for ANY niche. It’s MUCH cheaper than all the others, he has a payment plan (with bonuses for full payment), master marketing strategies, AND a full money back guarantee – as long as you finish. Even if you cancel, you keep part of it. It’s only 10 weeks, you get certified for real, plus 12 months of additional support …he’s realistic in saying you get started in 10 weeks (after certification) but there’s more to practice to become a Master Coach. Here’s the link if you’re interested:

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Absolutely- love your name, travellingbabe! I’ve missed traveling! Hope to get back to it this year.

        Wish I’d had this site before I invested in a “well known” business coaching program 2 years ago.

        Good of it – I’m working on a company to create T-shirts for elephant causes.
        Love Ash’s yoga mat cause for that reason. I’ve got it bookmarked to buy my next mat from you, Ash.

        And, I also recommend- Yanik Silver- Evolved Enterprise – you can give AND make great money (think Tom’s shoes as one model). Can work for services and products.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Thank you so much for all the incredible feedback on this blog. I was wondering if anyone has tried out the eCornell online certificate program. They offer 40 different online certificate programs including Nutrition.Just wondering how legit it is and if its worth considering?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Wow, thanks! I was seriously considering signing up for the HCI course. Before doing so, I decided to go online to check out reviews and found yours! Not many out there other than HCI reviews on their website. Glad I found you – dodged a bullet and would have been pissed with spending a lot of money! Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So happy you found my review! I couldn’t find any before I signed up either, which is exactly why I wrote this. Best wishes as you continue to research! Maybe read through some of the other comments on this post…several people have shared good alternatives to HCI. Xo


  12. hi,
    i currently am in the stage of researching different health coaching programs- IIN and HCI were at the top of my list. health coaching seems like a perfect fit for me, but i am struggling with where i should be going for the certificate. does anyone know the best place for this? i have to pay for my schooling and dropping $5000 on something that is a complete waste is something i’m really trying to avoid. however, online schooling and something that i could get done quickly is very suitable for my lifestyle right now. i have no college degree, no background in health/business/marketing (i’ve been struggling with what i’ve wanted to do with my life for years now) so i am just trying to find some guidance on what to do. would hci really not be a good investment? even for someone just starting out? or are there better options? would a health coach even be worth it career wise? any input would be extremely helpful.
    thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Read through the comments on this blog post- several others have mentioned some great alternatives to IIN and HCI. As for health coaching as a career, it is doable, but it is a LOT of work to get clients. In theory, the career sounds awesome, but in practice, the job is mostly lead generation, marketing, networking etc. Unless you get a job working for a company or organization, in which case the pay is very low and you’ll definitely need either a certification or a college degree. In my opinion, $5k is a lot to dropping something so uncertain. If you need college degree, check out Its a tuition-free university.i am currently doing their MBA program (so far I LOVE it, but I’ll write a thorough review on that later, after I have a few more classes under my belt). But I believe they do have a bachelor’s in Health Science. Could be a good alternative to a coaching program that isn’t really worth much. Hope that helps! Also, I’d recommend reading some books on the topics you’re interested in coaching.


    1. Glad this helped! Although, I believe someone else commented on IIN in the comments here…had a similar experience to HCI. Maybe read thru the comments for more on that. I cannot speak of it personally.


  13. I am so glad that Clarity Coach was late to the call! While I waited, I searched for HCI reviews and found yours! What a godsend you are! Thank you for saving me money, time and disappointment. While, I thought their delivery was odd and somewhat unprofessional, I was ready to join their next cohort! They surely have the marketing aspects down pat! I also suspect they are stoked on the easy money they make. I will continue to search for an accredited program that will deliver.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Thank you Ashley for speaking frankly and sharing your thoughts. I found this really interesting to read a review that was so in contrast to my experience. I really do feel it is important to hear all sides though so I kept reading until the end. Respectfully, I wanted to share my own experience as you have requested. I was a graduate of BHC March 2016 and received the health and life coaching certificate through them. I also attended 2 live conferences, SanDiego and Dallas, and chose not to move forward with their mastery program. Interestingly I have similar results in my business compared to many of the mastery students (I keep in touch with many of them). My personal experience was that this program, Stacey and Carey, and other peers have transformed my life more than my MBA ($50K+) so I am most grateful. I got to really look within to my subconscious blocks and unblock areas that I had never realized were holding me back. I agree though, this is not for everyone and if you are looking for the criticisms, like anything, you will find them. I recognized that I needed to show up VERY open to the process, and I am so much happier about my life since I have left the corporate world working 15+ years in HR. I’m thrilled that I get to help others get to their goals and my clients are getting results. Just another perspective to consider in case it is helpful. – Crystal Young

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Crystal, thanks so much for sharing your experience! This makes me so happy that you had a positive experience and were in the right mindset to receive what they offered. More power to you, for sure! Thanks again for sharing 🙂


  15. I have a question about the cancellation. I am not even 20 days in and it’s not what i thought it was going to be. I’m not happy. I sent an email to the support center to cancel like the terms and conditions said to. I got an email back that said a ticket has been opened. I have no idea what this means. Do You have any information on how I cancel or am I doing it right?
    Amanda Medina

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your comment. A ticket being opened sounds like an automated reply from their software that manages customer service. If you don’t hear back in a few days, I’d call them directly. Or you can just call them right away. Since you have to cancel before 30 days, I’d probably personally call ASAP to make sure it goes through. Hope that helps and good luck!


  16. Wow girl, thanks so much for this! One of the best reviews I’ve read about anything, and you just helped me save thousands of dollars! HCI originally popped up as an ad after I was researching other nutrition programs, that’s always how they get ya haha. Loved how you presented their course information, and where else to (better) find the same information. I’ve now got a huge book list going that I’m excited to get into! Thanks for helping me choose, I’ve decided to go with Edison Institute of Nutrition. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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