INFACT

International School for Food Addiction Counseling and Treatment

Learn from the Experts!

Welcome to INFACT – the world’s first and only training for sugar/food dependency counseling which results in professional certification from an accredited certification body. Graduates qualify to receive a Food Addiction Counselor (FAC) certificate from the European Certification Board (ECB).

Our next course begins on Saturday, September 7, 2019 and we’re open for applications!

  • This seven-month training is designed for current or future professionals in the fields of addiction, social work, health, obesity, nutrition, physical education, etc.  It will benefit anyone wishing to increase their knowledge of the root causes of food addiction/compulsive eating and the enduring solution for it. All graduates will have learned effective methods of counseling and treatment to achieve lasting recovery.

 

  • 33 students have graduated since this groundbreaking training was introduced in 2016. INFACT alumni are launching their own practices and being hired as Food Addiction Counselors (FACs) for leading obesity centers, hospitals and food addiction treatment centers internationally!

 

  • The course consists of thirteen online training sessions (taught in English) on designated Saturday mornings between September 7, 2019 and March 21, 2020. A five-day, in-person, residential food addiction treatment intensive is also required. Click here for the complete course schedule.

 

  • New this year:  Choose from two location/date options for the required, 5-day treatment intensive – Toronto, Canada (9/27/19 to 10/2/19) or Iceland (11/5/19 to 11/10/19). 
  • Each Saturday online learning session lasts four hours (beginning at 10am EST). Classes include lectures, hands-on teaching/learning and active discussion.

 

  • Sessions are conducted through the online video conferencing site Zoom, with a live meeting format that includes audio and video.

 

  • Those completing the training are qualified for certification by the European Certification Board (ECB) as a Food Addiction Counselor (FAC). The cost of your first certificate is included in the tuition.

 

  • Participants have already registered from the USA, Canada, The Far East, Spain, Israel and Iceland.

 

  • Tuition for the combined training and intensive is US$ 3,600. This price includes lodging and food during the five-day intensive; the teaching manual and materials; and the cost of the first Food Addiction Counselor certificate (FAC) from the ECB.
    A 10% early bird discount will be deducted if tuition is paid by August 20, 2019.

 

  • Those interested, please email Esther H.Gudmundsdottir at esther@mfm.is for a private application interview.

Why INFACT?

INFACT training allows you to learn from
nine of the world’s leading Food Addiction experts.

“No other Food Addiction program offers anything comparable,” explains INFACT’s Director, Esther H. Gudmundsdottir MSc.. “There are no other programs teaching clinical counseling for Food Addiction. INFACT is the only school and training which has been accepted for certification by certifying bodies world-wide. We’re the first and only,” adds Gudmundsdottir, who also directs the MFM Center for Treatment of Food Addiction in Iceland. “The lineup of teachers and lecturers is a unique blend of pioneers in this field. Between us we, have over 150 years of combined experience in counseling and treating the disease of sugar/Food Addiction, as well as expertise in metabolic science.”

 

INFACT 2019/2020 will be taught by a panel of nine international experts on the forefront of Food/Sugar Addiction, counseling, treatment, biochemistry, medicine, metabolic science and nutrition. Online course instructors include Phil Werdell, MA (USA), Bitten Jonsson, RN (Sweden), Vera Tarman, MD (Canada), Marty Lerner, PhD. (USA), Theresa Wright, MS (USA), Mary Foushi, CFA (USA), and Esther H. Gudmundsdottir, MSc. (Iceland), plus special guest lecturers Dr. Robert Lustig (USA), and Dr. Nicole Avena (USA).  Instructors and facilitators of the five-day Intensive in Canada include Vera Tarman, MD (Canada), Esther H. Gudmundsdottir, MSc. (Iceland), Amanda Leith and Agnes Thora Gudmundsdottir. Instructors and facilitators of the five-day Intensive in Iceland include Phil Werdell, MA (USA), Marty Lerner, PhD. (USA), Esther H. Gudmundsdottir, MSc. (Iceland), and Agnes Thora Gudmundsdottir.

 

Click here for more information about INFACT’s expert instructors!

Becoming credentialed with an FAC certification sets you apart from other service providers as a highly qualified and specialized professional FA counselor. Your FAC certification assures employers, referral sources, clients and their families that you have met internationally recognized standards of professionalism and ethics. As a certified FAC, you have demonstrated your professional competency through comprehensive training, earned qualifications and first-hand experience that have been verified by a respected, independent evaluator.

Certification by an international consortium of Food Addiction professionals proves that you’ve achieved the standard of professional education and experience necessary to provide trustworthy Sugar/Food addiction counseling, treatment, and recovery services. Moreover, credentialing demonstrates your commitment to continuing education as a requirement for recertification. Nothing else can similarly assure the public that you abide by the highest standards of quality and integrity.

The INFACT Food Addiction Counselor (FAC) certification course was patterned after the European Certification Board’s (ECB’s) Alcohol and Drug Counselor curriculum, beginning with their requirements and examination for Alcohol and Drug Counselor certification. However, with the ECB’s oversight and approval, INFACT’s curriculum, course work and examination have been significantly adapted to meet the unique requirements identified in the ECB’s detailed FAC job analysis.

The result is a specialized Food Addiction Counseling curriculum taught by a collection of the world’s foremost experts in Sugar/Food Dependency. The INFACT curriculum includes first-hand, experiential training that’s specifically tailored to further students’ understanding of Sugar/Food Addiction and the counseling/treatment methods necessary to effectively treat various eating disorders as an addiction. This credentialing and certification process has provided much-needed standardization of the rapidly evolving professional standards of Sugar/Food Addiction counseling and treatment.

The ECB has entrusted INFACT to administer the ECB-approved final examination and attest that, upon graduation, every INFACT student has met all ECB requirements for certification. The ECB has also entrusted INFACT to evaluate each student’s need for clinical supervision of their future FAC work, and to dictate each student’s requirement for clinical supervision on an individual basis, according to the factors detailed below. As an INFACT student, you can rest assured that upon graduation, you will have already successfully fulfilled all of the ECB’s FAC certification requirements (with the understanding that your future work as a Food Addiction Counselor will be performed in accordance with the number of clinical supervision hours INFACT deems appropriate in your specific case.) Please see the Clinical Supervision section below for more information.

The ECB has entrusted INFACT to assess and approve applicants for admission to the course, ensuring that each candidate meets the following ECB requirements. In addition to submitting the online Registration Form, please submit the following items via email to esther@mfm.is to complete your application:

  • a written summary of your education and work training history, qualifications and specializations;
  • a written summary of your 12-step knowledge and participation;
  • and two letters of recommendation.
  • Please be aware that INFACT training is taught in English. Understanding of the English language is a requirement for admission.
  • Upon receipt of your application, Esther Helga Gudmundsdottir (Director of INFACT) will contact you to arrange an online application interview, via the online video conferencing site Zoom.

For the online portion of the training, you will need a computer with audio, video capabilities and a stable Internet connection. Active involvement in INFACT’s live, online course is essential, along with the following obligations:

  • participation in a 5-day, on-site treatment intensive [two location/date choices are available this year: North of Toronto, Canada (9/27/19-10/2/19) or South of Reykjavik, Iceland (11/5/19 to 11/10/19)].
  • weekly submission of assignments and activities;
  • participation in a student group that works together between sessions;
  • presentation of a final project;
  • and the passing of an ECB-approved final examination.

The requirements for INFACT graduation and for ECB certification are one and the same. The ECB has entrusted INFACT to address all ECB certification requirements as part of INFACT training. Thus, if you are admitted to (and graduate from) INFACT, you are automatically qualified for ECB certification. Upon graduation, you will need to submit an application to the ECB for certification; however, the cost of your first-year certificate is included with your INFACT tuition.

ECB certification is granted with the understanding that you will perform your future work as a Food Addiction Counselor in faithful accordance with the number of clinical supervision hours INFACT deems appropriate in your specific case.

INFACT will prepare and assist you in meeting all of these ECB requirements for FAC certification.

  • References: The ECB (and therefore INFACT) requires two references at the time of application. If your application is approved for admission to the course, you have met the ECB’s certification requirement for references.
  • Education: Graduation from INFACT training meets all 300 of the ECB’s educational requirements, including six hours devoted specifically to counselor ethics.
  • Examination: The ECB has entrusted INFACT to administer the ECB-approved final examination. No further testing will be required when you apply for ECB certification.
  • Code of Ethics: A signed, ECB-approved Code of Ethics agreement for Food Addiction Counseling is required for graduation and certification. Please see Code of Ethics section for a sample of the agreement.
  • Clinical Supervision: INFACT has been entrusted by the ECB to evaluate each graduate individually regarding the number of clinical supervision hours that will be required for her/him, within a range of 1,000 to 6,000 hours. Please see Clinical Supervision section below for details on the criteria INFACT uses to make this assessment.

Clinical supervision is an important part of counselors’ professional advancement and the development of counseling proficiency. As such, it’s an essential component for ensuring high-quality patient care. The main goals of clinical supervision are to train, educate, support, and guide counselors. It’s important for newer counselors to have clinical supervisors they can count on for mentoring, leadership, clinical direction, professional training opportunities, and encouragement.

As described in the above section on Graduation/Certification Requirements, INFACT has been entrusted by the ECB to evaluate each graduate individually regarding the number of clinical supervision hours that will be required for her/him. INFACT makes this individual determination within a range of 1,000 to 6,000 hours, based on the following ECB-approved criteria.

  • Work Experience: INFACT will take into consideration the degree to which each graduate’s past work experience relates to Food Addiction Counseling.
  • Educational Background: INFACT will determine an appropriate level of equivalence for previous, relevant education. For example, an associate´s degree in behavioral science might substitute for 1000 hours of clinical supervision; a bachelor´s degree in behavioral science might substitute for 2000 hours; a master´s degree in behavioral science might substitute for 4000 hours, and so on.
  • 12-Step Knowledge and Experience: INFACT will individually assess each graduate’s knowledge and experience with 12-Step programs of recovery as an additional factor in determining how much clinical supervision of her/his future FAC work will be needed.
  • Upon certification, graduates may begin practicing as a Food Addiction Counselor under clinical supervision. ECB certificates are granted to INFACT students upon graduation with the understanding that, as new practitioners, they will faithfully fulfill the number of clinical supervision hours assessed by INFACT in their future FAC work.

As described above, a signed, ECB-approved Code of Ethics agreement for Food Addiction Counseling is required for graduation and certification.

 

INFACT Code of Ethics Statement  (Sample)

As a Certified Food Addiction Counselor, I recognize that ethical standards are a fundamental element of my professional practice. I commit to upholding the highest standard of ethical care, free from weight bias, in all my relationships with clients, colleagues, health care professionals and the public.

The INFACT Code of Ethics was written to govern the conduct of its students and graduates. It is the accepted Standard of Conduct for all Food Addiction Counselors (FACs) certified by INFACT.

I agree to abide by this Code of Ethics within my scope of practice as a Food Addiction Counselor. I also agree that my actions will be specifically focused on helping clients deal with issues relating to their recovery from Food Addiction.

Name (printed)_____________________________________________________  Signature______________________________________________ Date:_______________________

40 hours of continuing education must be earned every two years to remain eligible for bi-annual ECB recertification.