What is Nutritional Therapy?
Nutritional Therapy is the application of nutrition science in the promotion of health, peak performance and individual care.
Nutritional therapy practitioners 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 imbalances and support the body towards optimum 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 personalized 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. (source https://bant.org.uk/)
Who would benefit from a nutritional therapy consultation?
Everyone really, everyone who wants to improve their health and perform on their peak.
Nutritional therapy has really good results with:
- Digestive diseases such as celiac, IBS, Crohn’s, GORD, SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth) and generally anyone who suffers from bloating, flatulence and maldigestion
- Reproductive diseases such as Polycystic ovaries syndrome, endometriosis, infertility, menopause
- Autoimmune diseases such as eczema, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis
- Hormonal issues such as Diabetes and Hyper/hypo-thyroidism
- Cardiovascular diseases such as high cholesterolaemia, high blood pressure, atherosclerosis
- Cancer, this is an area that is very close to home as I’ve been a lymphoma cancer patient myself so have a first hand experience on how much nutrition can support cancer patients
- General fatigue and lower energy issues, probably that is the most common symptom for someone to see a nutritional therapist
What to expect from a consultation?
Before the first consultation, the practitioner usually provides a health and nutrition questionnaire for the client to complete. An initial consultation typically lasts 60 to 90 minutes, and in this time the practitioner asks detailed questions about current health concerns, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment, medical history, family history, lifestyle, levels of physical activity, use of medication and supplements and diet. The practitioner then evaluates individual needs and uses the extensive evidence base for nutritional science to develop a personalised, safe and effective nutrition and lifestyle programme. Follow up consultations are generally after four weeks in order to monitor progress and make any necessary adjustments. Further follow-ups may be required depending on each individual situation.
What is naturopathy?
A Naturopath is a health practitioner who applies natural therapies. Providing personalised care to each patient, the naturopath sees humankind as a holistic unity of body, mind, and spirit.
The principles of Naturopathy were first used by the Hippocratic School of Medicine in about 400 BC. The Greek philosopher Hippocrates believed in viewing the whole person in regards to finding a cause of disease, and using the laws of nature to induce cure. It was from this original school of thought that Naturopathy takes its principles.
- The healing power of nature- nature has the innate ability to heal
- Identify and treat the cause – there is always an underlying cause behind the symptom, be it physical or emotional
- Do no harm- a Naturopath will never use treatments that may trigger other conditions
- Treat the whole person- when preparing a treatment plan, all aspects of a person’s being are taken into consideration
- The Naturopath as a teacher – a Naturopath empowers the patient to take responsibility for his/her own health by teaching self-care
- Prevention is better than cure – a Naturopath may remove toxic substances and situations from a patient’s lifestyle to prevent the onset of further disease