Last Updated: December 29, 2020

Looking back on the year is a way to sharpen our focus on the most memorable achievements and appreciate how far we’ve come—during what seems like the toughest year of our collective lives. We’ve rounded up health coach industry news for 2020, starting in February, then a deep dive into Summer, and a top 10 in the Fall. Let’s take a moment for an intentional observance of our favorites and a few remarks we should celebrate for the year in the following categories:

  • Innovations in Health Tech Services
  • Health Coaching Education
  • Influential Changemakers
  • Health Industry Trends and Milestones
  • Primal-Aligned Wins
  • Resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic

Innovations in Health Tech Services

  • Is it possible to bring biohacking to the masses? With a $7.2 million dollar investment in Bioniq and a global mission, it is.
  • A telemedicine service through Steady MD helps pair up patients with their ideal doctor and work together entirely online to develop plans for their personal health needs. Check out this episode of Health Coach Radio where Dr. Rick Henriksen shares the details of this revolutionary service.
  • Sofia Health is another groundbreaking platform making holistic health and wellness care more accessible to the everyday consumer, and helping practitioners manage their virtual businesses.
  • In general, AI is the future of health, and here’s what lies ahead.
  • What if Medicaid recipients could be one text message away from health coaching support? CoachMe made this possible by connecting more than 5 million citizens who are on Medicaid and struggling with chronic disease so that they can have the support they need to journey towards better health and prevention.
  • Hats off to CVS Pharmacy for turning to prevention with their increasing locations boasting new wellness rooms for nutrition coaching, health screenings, education, and counseling to support patients with chronic conditions and preventative care.

Health Coaching Education

  • The American Medical Association has now approved “Health and Well-Being Coaching” as part of Category III, which means that we’re two categories away from permission to file for health insurance reimbursement for services that are provided in a clinical care setting with board-certified health coaches.
  • Here at PHCI, we’ve implemented some notable upgrades to our suite of offerings as a health coach educator, which includes the remarkably enhanced 2020 version of our original PHC certification learning platform and curriculum. And, this Summer, we celebrated the launch of our new Level 2 Primal Health Coach certification program (L2) which qualifies PHC L2 grads to become National Board Certified Health and Wellness Coaches (NBCHWC).
  • Health coaching awareness is truly blossoming as we witness two community colleges now achieving NBHWC approval on their Health & Wellness Coaching programs.

Influential Change-Makers

  • After many years of dedication and tireless research, Diana Rodgers and Robb Wolf have released the expertly crafted documentary and book called Sacred Cow: The Nutritional, Environmental and Ethical Case for Better Meat. Here’s to hoping that this empathetic, logical collection of facts and theory will serve as a beacon of change in a divided landscape of anti- vs. pro-meat advocates.
  • His unconventional cancer story is taking the alternative health industry by surprise. Listen along as our very own Dr. Al Danenberg shares his triumphant and daring story battling terminal bone marrow cancer with a carnivore diet and limited conventional intervention. If that doesn’t move you, then perhaps this interview, during which he and I were brought to tears, will.
  • He gained 75 pounds just to understand his clients better, and to lose the weight together. Now, Drew Manning is getting Fit2Fat2Fit, again, experimenting with a variety of diets to help guinea-pig his way to some more definitive answers and results for his fans.

More Health Industry Trends and Milestones

  • 2020 seems to be the year of biofeedback wearables. Perhaps it’s the pandemic or just a natural progression from years of Fitbit and progressive Apple watches, but monitoring your health markers and self-care efforts in a wearable fashion is trending—and it makes real-time health feedback possible and engaging. “By some estimates, the wearables market is currently worth about $70 billion annually, a huge total sales figure,” as stated in this PYMNTS article.
  • Biofeedback devices—like an ear clip that measures biomarkers while the patient watches a breathing tutorial—are coming in handy as mental health professionals do their best to help an exploding patient base transition to virtual, at-home care.
  • Plant medicines from the category of psychedelics are gaining respect and possible legalization on a federal level for the treatment of various mental health conditions—as noted in dozens of 2020 press releases shared by MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies) such as this one: “FDA agrees to expanded access program for MDMA-assisted psychotherapy for PTSD” where they’re in Phase 3 of the FDA trial. Learn more in this fascinating interview with Dr. David Rabins on the Ben Greenfield Fitness podcast.
  • We’re not only talking about the US or North America; this also includes the UK and Europe as they take the lead on psychedelic therapy, primarily psilocybin-assisted therapy, for treatment-resistant depression and more.

Primal-Aligned Wins

  • 2020 has led to an urgency for a revamp in the US dietary guidelines. Thankfully, careful consideration is being paid towards the saturated fat guidelines, and it seems there’s a possible revision in our near future. “…researchers from well-regarded universities in the U.S., Canada, and Denmark told the leaders of USDA and HHS that advice to restrict saturated fat to no more than 10 percent of daily calories is outdated and not supported by the latest research.”
  • It’s a great day when you wake up and see that Intermittent Fasting is gaining mainstream acceptance—after all, it’s only been a part of the human diet for as long as we’ve walked the planet. 
  • Low carb dieting is finally capturing medical recognition for cardiovascular disease risk thanks to this meta-analysis that confirms a low-carb diet’s beneficial effect on cardiovascular disease risk factors.
  • Perhaps more healthcare providers will be open to the idea of a low carb diet since the CEO of the American Diabetes Association (ADA) was able to come off her insulin and three other medications as a result of following the diet. Her public statement, and nutrition therapy consensus report (with revised ADA stance on low carb) definitely turned heads this year.

Resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic

We’ve been challenged to become the most resilient version of ourselves in 2020. It’s a welcome reminder when I hear that our successes aren’t determined by our last actions, but by our next actions. Here’s to bigger and better things, and a worldwide growth mindset.

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