Frequently Asked Questions

What is Functional Nutrition Lab?

Functional Nutrition Lab is a school that offers an in-depth functional nutrition training program for health providers of all levels. The two main components of that training, the Digestive Intensive and Full Body Systems, skillfully blend the art of practice with the science of nutrition. Functional Nutrition Lab was created by functional nutritionist Andrea Nakayama to help practitioners achieve the same clinical and business success that she has had, becoming the last, best stop for patients who have tried everything.


Who is Functional Nutrition Lab for?

Healthcare providers of all levels: nutritionists, health coaches, MDs, acupuncturists, chiropractors, RDs, NP’s, RNs, PAs, students . . . there are no prerequisites to starting your deep dive into Functional Nutrition with FNL. However, the coursework is not intended for the patient to work on their own health issues. Some prior professional training is recommended to get the most out of the program.

Functional Nutrition Lab is for you if...

  • you are looking to increase client compliance so that your work as a practitioner helps more people
  • you want to grow your business by referral (doing great work will get people talking!)
  • you are either a professional who has a wealth of information, but hasn’t been taught the art of working with people, OR you are a coach with great people skills who hasn’t been taught the nitty gritty of physiology (this is the only program that combines both!)
  • you are looking for an in depth functional nutrition program with 100% support and mentorship
  • you want to feel more confident helping clients with complicated health challenges and complex nutrition concerns
  • you know (or suspect) one-size-fits-all protocols don’t work, and you want advanced training in individualized patient and client care
  • you are craving an intelligent community who is passionate about health and wellness and likes to geek out on getting great results, just like you


How does Functional Nutrition Lab differ from other programs?

Functional Nutrition Lab differs from other functional medicine and nutrition trainings in several ways. In many other trainings, there’s a focus on the theoretical. What Andrea is able to do, after working with hundreds of clients and thousands of class participants, is translate the theoretical into the practical. She wants you to have the clinical and business success that she has had, so she teaches you how to implement your knowledge to truly help people get well.

FNL is the only training program that teaches the following 4 key skills in building a thriving functional nutrition practice:

1. The art of connection: Learn how to create rapport and connection with your client, how to ask the right questions to find the root cause of their health issues, and tap into their motivations. Both your client compliance and clinical success will skyrocket.

2. In-depth anatomy and physiology through the lens of food and nutrition: How does food meet physiology? Food meets physiology differently in each of us because none of us are the same as any other. FNL teaches you to see what others cannot see—what’s going on in the unique body of your particular client.

3. Integrating your client’s unique physiology into their healing protocol: How to take the knowledge gained about the unique physiology of your client, along with his/her unique motivations (learned from the art of connection), to create individualized nutrition plans for your clients and patients that they will actually follow.

4. How to gain the respect of your client’s medical team: Work in tandem with physicians and other medical professionals, and become a true partner and advocate for your client.

Above all else, the support and mentorship provided by Andrea and her team are one of a kind. They guide you through case studies and answer your toughest questions so you can practice with confidence.


What is the Digestive Intensive?

The Digestive Intensive is the first intensive of Full Body Systems. It is both a stand-alone module as well as your entryway into the Full Body Systems curriculum. The health of the digestive system affects the health of every other system in the body. After all, food meets physiology in the digestive system.


What is Full Body Systems?

To truly practice functional nutrition, you need to know about all of the body systems. Food meets physiology in the digestive system, and from there it affects every system in the body. Full Body Systems is a once-a-year opportunity to dive deep into 7 key body systems (digestive, immune, urinary, cardiometabolic, endocrine, nervous, and reproductive,) so you have the information you need to help clients and patients with complex issues in any part of their physiology.

Every Intensive covers the anatomy, function, and physiology of that system as well as its interconnections with the other systems and the pivotal place where food meets physiology. This course is oriented specifically toward practitioners, and includes Done-For-You protocols highlighting Andrea’s favorites from her years in practice, and dedicated Message Board inclusive of daily support from Andrea and her team, in addition to the live weekly trainings that are all recorded for your ease of participation. Functional Nutrition Lab: Full Body Systems will empower you to create lasting results for your clients, boost your confidence, and transform your practice!


Can I take any of the individual Intensives alone?

The only portion of Full Body Systems that is available as a stand-alone course is the Digestive Intensive. We offer the Digestive Intensive this way because we understand that not everyone can commit to a full 10-month program of study and we want to give students the opportunity to both understand what Andrea offers and to get a digestible chunk of info that they can immediately put to work in their practice.

Full Body Systems becomes a community of practitioners and students, and the curriculum builds on itself. It’s important to Andrea to keep both curriculum and community integrity, so we do not allow students to take individual components of Full Body Systems.


Can I participate if I live outside the United States?

Absolutely! You can participate in Functional Nutrition Lab from anywhere in the world. We’ve had Lab attendees from Hong Kong to Mexico to Switzerland and in over 63 countries to date. Wherever you are, we have a place for you in the Lab. All you need is a good internet connection.


I don't have a science background. Will I be able to keep up?

A background in science is not needed to participate in Functional Nutrition Lab programs. Full Body Systems has been completed by practitioners at various stages, from those just completing health coaching school who have little-to-no science background, to those with nursing, acupuncture, or medical degrees.

Andrea has a way of teaching that allows both novice and professional to participate. She’s an expert at breaking down the hard-to-understand information so that you can actually comprehend what you might have previously found out of reach and expand upon what you may already know in ways that you have not contemplated.

The truth is, Andrea struggled with science all through high school and never took another course until she needed it for her nutrition practice. Once it had a purpose, it all made sense. She’s the one to put it into context so it can make sense for you.


What is the format of the classes?

The online classes (audio only) are each 90 minutes long. During class, Andrea teaches, shows videos, shares diagrams and illustrations custom-made for her teachings, and asks questions of the students that can be answered on the message board. She also provides quizzes so that you can test your knowledge at incremental points throughout the course. You can listen at any time and the Message Board is available 24-7.

Each week, there is also a live 60-minute workshop session where you'll meet with 1-2 of your peers in our virtual classroom to practice what you're learning in class and have time for Q&A with a FxNA nutritionist.


Will we receive handouts or materials, in addition to the audio classes and recordings?


Each Intensive delivers comprehensive print materials including:

  • Diagrams, illustrations, articles, videos and quizzes to support your understanding of the system and where imbalances may occur
  • Done-for-You Protocols based on Andrea's clinical experience with hundreds of clients and thousands of course participants to guide your nutritional approaches with clients with the particular health concerns that you will see most
  • Course transcripts so you don’t have to take feverish notes during class
  • Glossary of important terms so that you can communicate with health and medical colleagues with ease
  • 'What's on My Shelf' — a bibliography of Andrea's favorite go-to books on digestive health
  • There’s also a library of Guest Health & Medical Expert interviews Andrea has conducted with her colleagues, stand-out stars in the field of healthcare, to support the conversations in class

What type of support and mentorship will I receive from Andrea and her team?

Andrea and her team are available on the Message Board to answer any and all questions you might have regarding class material and client cases. You are not alone. We take great care in answering your questions about both the art and science of functional nutrition, and we provide support for the entire 10 months of Full Body Systems and beyond. You can return to the Message Board at any time, even when you’re no longer a student. Many students consider the Functional Nutrition Lab Message Board their ‘search engine’ for all things health and nutrition.

In addition to the Message Board, each Intensive includes a one 90-minute Q&A call with two FxNA Nutritionists (‘Study Hall’) and one 2-hour Q&A call with Andrea (‘Power Hours’).


Will I receive a certification upon completion of Full Body Systems?

  • As a graduate of DI or FBS, you’ll receive a Certificate of Completion, CEUs (if you’re in a licensing body that requires and acknowledges our CEUs), and the DI/FBS badge to use on your website or marketing materials.
  • By completing both DI and FBS, you can earn 60 category 1 continuing education units with the National Association of Nutrition Professionals (NANP) (30 for each course) by passing an online test at the completion of class.
  • As a next step after Full Body Systems, we offer a certification program for people who want to take their practice to the next level. Upon completion of Full Body Systems, you’ll be eligible to apply for admission into that program to become a Certified Functional Nutritionist and Lifestyle Practitioner (FNLP). (Note: FNLP is a separate program available only to FBS graduates who apply and are accepted to the program.)

Will I receive continuing education units (CEUs) upon completion of Full Body Systems?

By completing both DI and FBS, you can earn 60 category 1 continuing education units with the National Association of Nutrition Professionals (NANP) (30 for each course) by passing an online test at the completion of class.


Will I be able to start practicing after completing Full Body Systems?

  • FNL is not a licensing body, and licensing laws vary by state and country. If you can legally practice as a health coach or other health practitioner, FNL is the best next step for learning how to practice confidently and effectively. Andrea is a stand for putting this information into practice because she knows the best practitioners are created that way. We encourage you to get started, even if it’s just one test client.
  • We continue to see graduates of Functional Nutrition Lab create successful practices based on what they’ve learned here. FNL has given them the tools and the confidence to fulfill their dreams of really helping people.

And if you're located in the United States, here's a resource that will help you figure out the laws where you live.


Will I be able to read, analyze or order labs upon completion of Full Body Systems?

While we do discuss various types of assessments that may be utilized in practice in Full Body Systems, Andrea’s focus is more on arming each practitioner—no matter their scope of practice—with the skills and understanding to approach each case with an investigative eye.

With this deeper understanding of how to practice, clinicians know which lab assessments might be necessary and when they can be avoided (to best support a client’s budget). They also fully grasp the role of labs among other assessments such as signs, symptoms and a detailed client history.

Andrea has found that many practitioners feel that without a deeper understanding of what’s happening in the body, that it’s challenging to apply practices of functional testing in practice with integrity and follow-through. Testing options can fall short if clinicians are unable to identify and address the root of a client’s symptoms, motivate them to make changes, or answer tough questions because of a lack of understanding of anatomy, function and physiology in the context of holistic health and nutrition.


Will Functional Nutrition Lab help me grow my business?

Functional Nutrition Lab has been the pivotal training for many practitioners who want to grow their nutrition businesses. Upon completion of Full Body Systems, you will have the clinical and people skills to grow your business by referral.

People want to get better, and when you’re able to solve cases that others found unsolvable, the referrals will likely begin to pour in.

Functional Nutrition Lab is not a business school per se, but we teach practitioners to grow their business the old fashioned way: by doing great work that gets people talking.

In Andrea’s private practice, she attracts clients who have health conditions that have been left unresolved by many doctors. She has been able to build a thriving practice, with a two-month wait list, because clients trust that she is able to dig deeper and help them get to the root cause of what ails them.

This training will help you build a thriving business—one where your clients become raving fans and you become known as the go-to practitioner.

Listen to the recordings of the Full Body Systems Roundtable where three stellar Full Body Systems graduates and Andrea discuss the trajectory of their holistic health practice over the last year.


What is Andrea's background and training?

Andrea’s road to understanding the power of nutrition began with a personal tragedy. Her young husband, Isamu, was diagnosed with a fatal brain tumor when Andrea was newly pregnant with their only child.

Isamu was given only 6 months to live. Unwilling to simply watch her husband die, Andrea began diligently researching the power of integrative practices, including nutrition. Her fast-growing and targeted understanding of healing foods helped prolong his life (2 years past his prognosis!), increased the quality of his days, and gave him an opportunity to know their son, Gilbert.

After Isamu’s passing, Andrea knew she had a new purpose in life... to change the way we do healthcare. She quit her job in book publishing to pursue practicing Functional Nutrition, both as a career and a mission.

Functional Nutrition Lab was created for those of you who want to follow in Andrea’s footsteps. When Andrea hung her shingle as a practitioner in 2009, she was astounded by how quickly her practice grew. She went from having a small solo practice to having a waiting list to running a virtual wellness center where she had to hire additional nutritionists. She even helped the most desperate people with the toughest cases including autoimmune issues such as Crohn’s Disease, Hashimoto’s and MS, as well as those with cancer and undiagnosed health challenges that other practitioners could not resolve.

When she spoke with her colleagues, she realized that she was having exponentially greater success than others who had the same tools and the same educational background as she had.

To help others have the same success that she’s had, Andrea created Full Body Systems (Functional Nutrition Lab) to teach practitioners how to practice TRUE root-cause and functional nutrition, and to develop a practice that naturally scales based on the great results that they are getting with their clients.

Her education and includes the following:

  • Certified Nutrition Educator (CNE) and Certified Nutrition Counselor (CNC) from Bauman College
  • Certified Holistic Health Coach (CHHC) from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition (IIN)
  • Masters of Human Nutrition & Functional Medicine from University of Western States
  • Select Institute of Functional Medicine training programs and modules
  • Continuing education in areas of specialty such as thyroid disorder, autoimmunity, and functional lab diagnostics

Andrea is the very first Functional Nutrition & Lifestyle Practitioner (FNLP) and has created the certifying body for this credential.

Accolades of Note:
A co-producer of the Hashimoto’s Institute, Andrea has been featured in Oprah's O Magazine, Martha Stewart’s Whole Living, and has made regular contributions to The Epoch Times and numerous online conferences including Sean Croxton’s Second Opinion Series, where she is a crowd favorite. Andrea was awarded the National Association of Nutrition Professionals’ Impact Award in 2015 and Service Award for her commitment to the nutrition industry in 2016.

Andrea is now regularly consulted as the nutrition expert on the medical teams for the toughest clinical cases in the practices of world-renowned doctors.


What if I participated in the program last year?

Your enrollment grants you a seat for two full years, as well as lifetime access to materials. If you first participate in the Digestive Intensive or Full Body Systems in 2017, you will receive a special coupon to use to register for free next year. Consider it Andrea’s gift to you. (Many students call their second free year their “victory lap”!)

If you are not able to find your coupon code, please email so we can take care of you and ensure that you have your free seat at the table for Functional Nutrition Lab 2018!

If you participated in the program in 2016 or earlier, discounted access to the program will be provided. Keep an eye out for your email or contact us at


Are there any payment options?

For Full Body Systems, in addition to the 1-payment option, you have the option to pay for the program over 12 months with an added finance charge.

For Digestive Intensive, you can opt for a 1-payment or 2-payment option (with no additional finance charge).


What is the return policy?

You may withdraw from the course for any reason prior to November 20, 2018, and request a full refund for the course tuition already paid. See the refund policy for more details.


How much time will the program take?

Each weekly class is 90-minutes. There are some added bonus sessions that are optional but recommended to help boost your confidence and comprehension.

Plan on a minimal time investment of 90 min/week, but to get the most out of the program we estimate a 3 hr/week commitment with the option of investing additional time for deeper learnings.


  • Class = 90 min once a week (most essential piece—the rest is really optional to take your learning further)
  • Workgroup = 60 minutes once a week
  • Q+A with Andrea = 120 minutes once a month
  • Q&A with FxNA Nutritionists = 90 minutes once a month
  • Message Board = flexible, but a valuable piece that many students budget time for. Interact with Andrea and her team. Your access is ongoing (even after the message board closes to new posts, you’ll have read-only access).
  • Bonus Sessions = 60-90 minutes per week

Is there time for Q&A?

Twice a month there are chances to ask questions in live sessions either with Andrea or with her Nutrition Team. Yet your best opportunity for Q+A is on the dedicated Functional Nutrition Lab Message Board, where you can ask questions any time they arise, and have the support of other practitioners in the community as well as Andrea and the rest of her Nutrition Team. Andrea is on the Message Board nearly every day during the live Intensives.


How long will I have access to the course materials?

You have lifetime access to materials—and a seat in the live sessions for two years!


Will I receive support if I have questions between classes?

You bet! Functional Nutrition Lab includes an active Message Board monitored by Andrea and her Nutrition Team at FxNA. It’s a place where you can ask questions and connect with both Andrea and the rest of your FNL community.


Have additional questions?

Our team of Admissions Advisors, who are graduates of Full Body Systems, are available to speak with you. You may schedule a chat with them here.

Or, please email us at


Module 1: Digestive Intensive (offered as a stand alone module) Module 2: Immune Intensive
Module 3: Urinary Intensive
Module 4: Cardiometabolic Intensive
Module 5: Endocrine Intensive
Module 6: Neuro Intensive
Module 7: Reproductive Intensive

Each Intensive includes:

  • 4 recorded classes with Andrea (90 minutes each)
  • 1 live Q&A with FxNA Nutritionists (90 minutes)
  • 1 live Q&A with Andrea (2 hours)
  • 4 live workshop sessions to practice what you learn in class (60 minutes each)
  • Bonus Expert Interviews
  • Other bonus audio classes and handouts

Note: The Cardio Intensive is structured as a self-study month and does not follow the above format.

Have additional questions that aren't answered here? Our support team is available to speak with you.

You can email us at