The professional work of unlicensed practitioners, including nutrition consultants, is regulated by numerous legislative norms and acts on different levels from the local level to the federal level. At the same time, the legal regulations are mutual and, on the one hand, they regulate the work of a nutrition specialist, while, on the other hand, they regulate the relationship of nutrition specialists with their clients. In such a way, the existing legislative norms concern not only nutrition specialists but also their clients. In such a situation, the knowledge of the legislative norms and principles provide nutrition specialists with an essential basis for the normal and stable work which guarantees the safety of the health of clients and does not raise any problems in the practice of a nutrition specialist.
On analyzing the existing legislative norms and principles, it is necessary to underline that the y tend to the strict regulation of the work of nutrition practitioners as well as the work of many other specialists working in different fields, especially those which are related to healthcare services and may affect the health of people. In such a context, the extent to which a nutrition specialist is informed of the existing legislative norms, his or her rights and duties, as well as rights of patients, defines his or her ability to protect himself or herself from possible problems caused by the violation of the existing legislative norms.
However, it is quite difficult to know absolutely all nuances of legislative norms. Moreover, a nutrition consultant is not a professional lawyer anyway and, therefore, he or she is unable to fully understand and apply effectively existing legislative norms in order to avoid possible troubles. In such a situation, the nutrition consultant should act in accordance with basic legislative principles that define all legislative norms and acts implemented in the USA on all levels.
In this respect, the US Constitution contains the fundamental legal norms and principles which are superior to all other legislative acts and norms implemented in the USA on all levels, from the federal level to the local level. Consequently, if a nutrition consultant is aware of basic principles of the Constitution and rights and liberties which the US Constitution guarantees to all citizens of the US, then he or she is able to work and develop his practice in accordance with the law because as long as he does not violate any norm of the US Constitution and as long as he or she exercises her rights and liberties guaranteed by the US Constitution he or she will not have any troubles with the law.
At this point, it is worth mentioning the fact that the US Constitution uses the Biblical concept of divine laws. In such a way, the divine laws or Mosaic laws form the foundation of the US Constitution (Legal Guidlance, 2008). Hence, in his or her professional work, a nutrition consultant should above all focus on the effect of his work on his or her client. In accordance to the Biblical laws and the US Constitution, which are amply supported by numerous legislative acts on the federal, state and local level, one of the major concerns of a nutrition consultant is avoidance of harm to the health of his or her clients.
In this respect, it is necessary to underline the fact that the work of a nutrition specialist is accompanied by certain risk since it can produce negative influence on the health of the client of a nutrition specialist. However, the deterioration of the health of the client may be provoked not only by incompetence of the nutrition consultant or by his or her professional negligence but also by numerous factors which are not dependent on the nutrition consultant. This is why the nutrition consultant should ensure that the client has understood all his or her recommendations properly and that he or she will follow these recommendations strictly. It is very important to have records of all these recommendations and consultations in order to prove innocence of the nutrition consultant if the client initiates a lawsuit against him or her, for instance. Some nutrition consultants can make a serious error if they fail to keep such records properly because gaps in the records can become a reason for allegations in competence or professional negligence.
Thus, it is possible to conclude that professionalism and attention to the basic legal norms and principles, the focus on the health of clients and avoidance of harm should be the fundamental principles of work of a nutrition consultant in the USA.
Legal Guidelines for Unlicensed Practitioners. (2008). New York: Random House.