The Institute for Prenatal Nutrition™ Mentorship Program is a 13-week comprehensive certification course in prenatal nutrition designed for health practitioners.

Get notified when IPN is officially open for enrollment again in 2024.

Ready to up-level your knowledge of prenatal nutrition?

Chances are:

  • You want to specialize in prenatal nutrition, but haven’t found a comprehensive training.
  • You have a background in nutrition already, but your formal education in nutrition/dietetics didn’t spend enough time on prenatal nutrition (and what was covered was likely outdated).
  • You’re already seeing pregnant clients, but don’t always feel confident that you know enough to guide them and answer all of their questions.

Here’s the thing: There is NO formal training to become a prenatal nutritionist that “checks all the boxes.”

Believe me, I looked long and hard for a program when I started out in this field. None of the available options offer all of the following:

This is why The Institute for Prenatal Nutrition™ (IPN) was founded.

Hi, I’m Lily Nichols. 

As a registered dietitian/nutritionist and diabetes educator with an extensive background in preconception, prenatal, and postpartum nutrition, I founded IPN to help other practitioners up-level their knowledge of perinatal nutrition.

As the author of the number one best-selling book on prenatal nutrition, Real Food for Pregnancy, I know that your clients are expecting more from you.

No longer is it acceptable to give out a one-page handout on prenatal nutrition. They want to know how to take care of themselves during pregnancy and why your recommendations will help them have an easier pregnancy and recovery. They may even be seeking specific advice on pregnancy complications, supplements, what foods are safe, lab tests, and so much more. Are you prepared to answer these questions with confidence?

The challenge with becoming a prenatal nutritionist is knowing where to look for accurate, evidence-based information.

When I was new to this field, I remember searching high and low for things like:

The Institute for Prenatal Nutrition™ Mentorship Program is the training I wish I had available when I started out in prenatal nutrition. It could have saved me years of work and a lot of overwhelm.

My formal training as a registered dietitian did not prepare me for the work I do today. The single class I took on Lifecycle Nutrition during my university studies had only a brief lesson on pregnancy nutrition — and most of that information, I have come to learn, was flat-out wrong. My dietetic internship was heavy on the clinical side, but only included a short rotation on the maternity ward. 

Once I was practicing as a dietitian, it felt like I was “thrown into the ring” blind and had to use my own time to level-up my knowledge to best serve my pregnant clients. I have now devoted my career to sharing what I have learned about prenatal nutrition from my decades of consulting, research, client work, writing, teaching, and advising on prenatal public policy (and, of course, with some personal insight from my own two pregnancies).

Become a Specialist in Prenatal Nutrition and change the face of the pregnancy nutrition field with me!

Did you know?

  • It takes 17 years for new research to make it into clinical practice (and even longer for those changes to be reflected in policy)
  • 47% of U.S. women of childbearing age are deficient in at least one micronutrient
  • 67% of U.S. pregnant women are not consuming optimal amounts of protein
  • New research has revealed that the RDA for a number of nutrients is an underestimate of the true requirement for pregnancy

We can do better for our pregnant clients. They’re literally counting on you — and so is the next generation.

Better prenatal nutrition can influence not only a mother’s health, but her child’s lifelong risk of disease and metabolic dysfunction.

Here’s what’s included in the Institute for Prenatal Nutrition™ Mentorship Program to become a Specialist in Prenatal Nutrition:


Lifetime access to online modules

Private community

Connect and collaborate with IPN colleagues in our own private space (NOT hosted on Facebook, hooray!)

Live Q&A calls with Lily

From complex clinical/client questions to business, it’s all on the table

Case Studies

Get feedback and guidance on tough cases

Topics covered:

  • Pregnancy physiology and how it influences nutrient needs
  • Macronutrient requirements – conventional vs. optimal
  • Micronutrient requirements – conventional vs. optimal
  • Nutrition for pregnancy complications (such as gestational diabetes and preeclampsia) and common complaints/discomforts
  • Pregnancy weight gain
  • Lab tests
  • Supplements
  • Nutrition for twin pregnancies
  • Exercise in pregnancy
  • Nutrition for postpartum recovery and breastfeeding
  • … and much more!

How is the course delivered?

For the first round of IPN’s mentorship, most material will be delivered in live classes as well as Q&A calls. In addition, some of the material will be pre-recorded lectures to view at a time convenient for you.

Live classes (90-120 min): Dates TBA

Live Q&A calls (60 min): Dates TBA

*All calls are recorded, so If you are unable to attend any of the sessions, you can review at a later time.

Community: After the first live class, you’ll gain access to our private IPN community. You can post in the community at any time. This space is primarily for connecting with community members and collaborating on cases together; questions directed solely to Lily are best reserved for Q&A calls.

Assignments: There will be assigned reading, several small projects, and a final case study. Don’t worry; I loathe busy work as much as you do! Any assignments will have a clear purpose and applicability to your practice. Completion of all assignments is required to earn your certificate as a Specialist in Prenatal Nutrition.

Frequently Asked Questions

You’ll have lifetime access to the educational portal (classes and the recorded Q&A calls from this round of the program). The community portal will only be open for the duration of the program. We may consider an option for ongoing access to the community via a monthly/yearly membership if there is enough demand (logistics and cost TBD).

Live classes are 90-120 min per week, live Q&A calls are 60 min per week. You’ll need another 1-2 hours per week (on average) to complete assigned reading, several small projects, and your final case study. This is a total of 4-5 hours per week. The more time you spend in the program and immerse yourself in the research, the more you’ll get out of it.

Yes, participants who complete all assignments and pass the final case study will receive a certificate of completion displaying “Specialist in Prenatal Nutrition.”

Although this program satisfies the CEU requirements for many professionals, the program is NOT pre-approved for CEUs by any profession. Whether you can earn CEUs will depend on your field and continuing education board regulations. We can’t guarantee approval for all types of practitioners.

Registered dietitians who enroll will be eligible to earn 35 CEUs for Lily’s book, Real Food for Pregnancy at no additional cost. This CEU activity is only pre-approved for registered dietitians and requires successful completion of a post-test. If you are another type of practitioner, you’ll need to check with your continuing education board regulations.


The program includes 13 weekly Q&A calls with Lily, which will provide plenty of opportunity for participants to ask questions. In addition, the community portal allows you to interact with fellow participants for clarification and professional insight from your colleagues. Lily will occasionally chime in within the community, but the place to ask questions directed to her specifically is the weekly Q&A calls. If you have a question you wish to ask of Lily anonymously, those can be sent over email and can be answered during Q&A calls; otherwise, please ask your question LIVE during the call.

Please see the list entitled “Topics covered” above.

This comprehensive training is an investment of $9,999 when paid in full. There is a payment plan option outlined on the application form. 

No. IPN’s mentorship is intentionally designed as a comprehensive program on prenatal nutrition. If you are interested in topic-specific classes, you can check out the webinars at the Women’s Health Nutrition Academy.

Absolutely. Not only does it go into more detail, but the mentorship program covers topics not addressed whatsoever in Real Food for Pregnancy or Real Food for Gestational Diabetes.

If you have additional education as a healthcare practitioner, you are more than welcome to apply. Given the level of material covered in the program, IPN is only accepting healthcare practitioners. Stay tuned for additional educational resources for non-clinical practitioners.

Get notified when IPN is officially open for enrollment again in 2024.

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