It’s OK to have a paleo advice weblog without a license, at least in NC!

I wrote about the story of the paleo blogger in North Carolina a really long time ago. He was instructed to stop giving advice because he was not licensed.  Now it looks like there is finally a resolution. From an article from The Institute for Justice:

In December 2011, Steve Cooksey started an advice column on his blog to answer reader questions about his struggle with Type II diabetes. Cooksey had lost 78 pounds, freed himself of drugs and doctors, and normalized his blood sugar after adopting a low-carb “Paleo” diet, modeled on the diet of our Stone Age ancestors. He wanted to use his blog to share his experience with others.

However, in January 2012, the North Carolina Board of Dietetics/Nutrition informed Cooksey that he could not give readers personalized advice on diet, whether for free or for compensation, because doing so constituted the unlicensed practice of dietetics. The board deemed Cooksey’s advice the unlicensed practice of nutritional counseling, sent him a 19-page print-up of his website indicating in red pen what he was and was not allowed to say, and threatened him with legal action if he did not comply.

“All I wanted to do was give adults advice on what they should buy at the grocery store,” said Steve Cooksey. “I was astonished that the government thought it had the power to regulate that sort of ordinary advice. These new guidelines make clear that I can provide that advice to anyone who wants to hear it, and they will provide important protection for all North Carolinians who want to talk with others about diet.”

The result came in a settlement with the NC agency in question, and the blogger will not need to get a dietitians license to give advice about a paleo lifestyle.

This seems like a good, common-sense result to me!


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