WHAT DOES A NUTRITIONIST DO EXACTLY?
Most people get – on a conceptual level at least – that they should probably eat a bit better than they do, they should probably move more and take the time for more ‘me time’ to live a long and happy life.
‘Life’ seems to get in the way of achieving that. Many of us are juggling jobs and the complexities of modern relationships, leaving little time to dedicate to the business of ‘being healthy’. Convenience often wins. It’s not that that’s wrong per se, but here’s the thing: all the time we are not eating or moving or living as well as we know to do, we are silently getting sicker.
That may mean going-to-hospital sick or it may just mean having health niggles that bother us greatly but that we have learned to cope with. I’m talking here about things like IBS or other tummy troubles, low energy, PMT, painful joints, stress, anxiety, haywire hormones, mood swings, trouble sleeping or possibly weight that has crept on over the years and you can’t seem to shift it, no matter what you try.
What I want to share with you today is that the food you eat matters more than you can possibly imagine. And by making simple changes to your diet, the symptoms of some of these conditions can be improved so markedly that there is a really profound shift in how you experience life.
WHAT IS NUTRITIONAL THERAPY?
Nutritional Therapy is the application of nutrition science in the promotion of health, peak performance and individual care. Registered Nutritional Therapists use a wide range of tools to assess and identify potential nutritional imbalances and understand how these may contribute to an individual’s symptoms and health concerns. This approach allows them to work with individuals to address nutritional balance and help support the body towards maintaining health. Nutritional Therapy is recognised as a complementary medicine and is relevant for individuals with chronic conditions, as well as those looking for support to enhance their health and wellbeing.
Practitioners consider each individual to be unique and recommend personalised nutrition and lifestyle programmes rather than a ‘one size fits all’ approach. Practitioners never recommend nutritional therapy as a replacement for medical advice and always refer any client with ‘red flag’ signs or symptoms to their medical professional. They will also frequently work alongside a medical professional and will communicate with other healthcare professionals involved in the client’s care to explain any nutritional therapy programme that has been provided.
Nutritional therapy is a very personal approach. You might hear practitioners talk about people being ‘biochemically unique’. That means that there isn’t a single way of eating that is right for everyone. Sandra might have PMS and you want to lose weight, for example. Sandra might have a history of antibiotic use, while you had your appendix out when you were 14. Sandra might have an intolerance to dairy, while you hate strawberries. I could go on, but you can imagine the thousands of different permutations here. And the fact is that your DNA, previous medical history, and any current symptoms as well as what you like and don’t like, not to mention your personal circumstances are all important when a Registered Nutritional Therapist creates a plan for you.
It is personalised just for you. That takes both time and skill. You could download something from the internet – if you knew what you were looking for – but it is not the same. A nutrition practitioner may also work with supplements targeted to a specific condition or your own health goal. This can be a minefield – potentially dangerous and inevitably costly – if you don’t know what you’re doing.
WHY DOESN'T EVERYONE SEE A NUTRITIONIST IF THE RESULTS ARE SO GOOD?
It’s unfortunate that so many people don’t understand what a huge effect a personalised food and lifestyle programme can have on the symptoms they have or how they experience their life.
Newspapers are full of soundbites about the latest foods, but they don’t really join the dots, and it’s difficult to see what might be possible for you. Vast majority of doctors – even those being trained today – have next to no current knowledge or practical experience of what their patients should be eating or how they might integrate the theory into their lives.
Some doctors – like Dr Chatterjee – are taking on training in something much bigger called Functional Medicine. This is a framework for considering that the symptoms you are experiencing are a result of imbalances in your body and, rather than treat the specific symptoms themselves, nutrition professionals try to understand the root cause of the problem and base their programme around that. If you think about it: nearly all medications merely suppress symptoms. Only very few are an actual cure – antibiotics come to mind here. Metformin lowers blood glucose – but why is it high in the first place? Statins lower cholesterol – but why is it elevated? Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) numb pain – but why are you in pain?
These are the questions nutrition professionals will ask before embarking on a quest to find out to then be able to address the root cause.
AN INVITATION TO YOU
Would you like to find out how nutritional therapy can help YOU?
I warmly invite you to book a FREE 30 minute Health Review with me to discuss how making small changes to your diet and lifestyle may lead to big changes in your health.
CLICK HERE to book your FREE 30 minute Health Review