Legislative Affairs > State Laws

California

California law does not prohibit any person from providing nutrition advice. Holistic nutrition professionals may work within their scope of practice. The law does protect the titles of “dietetic technician,” “registered dietitian,” “dietician,” or the letters “RD,” “DTR,” or any other words, letters, abbreviations, or insignia indicating or implying that the person is a dietitian, or dietetic technician, registered or registered dietitian, or to represent, in any way, orally, in writing, in print or by sign, directly or by implication, that he or she is a dietitian or a dietetic technician, registered or a registered dietitian

§2068. Nutritional Advice

This chapter shall not be construed to prohibit any person from providing nutritional advice or giving advice concerning proper nutrition. However, this section confers no authority to practice medicine or surgery or to undertake the prevention, treatment, or cure of disease, pain, injury, deformity, or physical or mental conditions or to state that any product might cure any disease, disorder, or condition in violation of any provision of law.

For purposes of this section the terms “providing nutritional advice or giving advice concerning proper nutrition” means the giving of information as to the use and role of food and food ingredients, including dietary supplements.

Any person in commercial practice providing nutritional advice or giving advice concerning proper nutrition shall post in an easily visible and prominent place the following statement in his or her place of business:

“NOTICE: State law allows any person to provide nutritional advice or give advice concerning proper nutrition—which is the giving of advice as to the role of food and food ingredients, including dietary supplements. This state law does NOT confer authority to practice medicine or to undertake the diagnosis, prevention, treatment, or cure of any disease, pain, deformity, injury, or physical or mental condition and specifically does not authorize any person other than one who is a licensed health practitioner to state that any product might cure any disease, disorder, or condition.”

The notice required by this section shall not be smaller than 81/2 inches by 11 inches and shall be legibly printed with lettering no smaller than1/2 inch in length, except the lettering of the word “NOTICE” shall not be smaller than 1 inch in length.

Examples of this sign that can be printed for your use can be found below:

California State Law Notice (Landscape)

California State Law Notice (Portrait)

(Added by Stats. 1980, Ch. 1313, Sec. 2.)

Direct Access Testing: 1246.5

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person may request, and any licensed clinical laboratory or public health laboratory may perform, the laboratory tests specified in this section. A registered clinical laboratory may perform the laboratory tests specified in this section if the test is subject to a certificate of waiver under CLIA and the laboratory has registered with the department under paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) of Section 1265. A program for nondiagnostic general health assessment that includes a laboratory test specified in this section shall comply with the provisions of Section 1244. The results from any test may be provided directly to the person requesting the test if the test is on or for his or her own body. These test results shall be provided in a manner that presents clear information and that identifies results indicating the need for referral to a physician and surgeon.

The tests that may be conducted pursuant to this section are: pregnancy, glucose level, cholesterol, occult blood, and any other test for which there is a test for a particular analyte approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration for sale to the public without a prescription in the form of an over-the-counter test kit. A test approved only as an over-the-counter collection device may not be conducted pursuant to this section.

While you may practice nutrition consultation as it pertains to food, nutrition intake, meal planning, grocery list, and recipe creation and nutritional assessment, you may not:

“…practice medicine or to undertake the diagnosis, prevention, treatment, or cure of any disease, pain, deformity, injury, or physical or mental condition and specifically does not authorize any person other than one who is a licensed health practitioner to state that any product might cure any disease, disorder, or condition.” – California Code, Business and Professions Code – BPC § 2068

California’s nutrition law can be found in the California Business and Professions Code, sections 2585, 2586, 2586.2, 2586.4, 2586.6, 2586.8, 2053.6, and 2068

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2585

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2586

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2586.2

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2586.4

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2586.6

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2586.8

http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displaySection.xhtml?sectionNum=2053.6.&lawCode=BPC

https://california.public.law/codes/ca_bus_and_prof_code_section_2068

California Regulations on Laboratory Testing

California allows for Direct Access Testing, which means anyone may order a select number of “nondiagnostic general health” tests. The law states: 

“The tests that may be conducted pursuant to this section are: pregnancy, glucose level, cholesterol, occult blood, and any other test for which there is a test for a particular analyte approved by the federal Food and Drug Administration for sale to the public without a prescription in the form of an over-the-counter test kit. A test approved only as an over-the-counter collection device may not be conducted pursuant to this section.”

(BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONS CODE – BPC, 1246.5.)  

http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displayText.xhtml?lawCode=BPC&division=2.&title=&part=&chapter=3.&article=3.

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