“You are what you eat!” Easy to say! “Everybody knows about nutrition!” Easy to claim! How is it then, that despite all that we know, our planet is struggling with over 340 million obese children and over 650 million obese adults and all the health problems that result according to the World Health Organisation? Something doesn’t add up!
We do care what we look like, and spend a fortune in the process. Gym memberships, personal trainers, various therapies, spa treatments, hair, clothes and even surgery are lucrative businesses that will always have a market. The media fuels the perfect image, that from an early age, we subconsciously accept as the ‘norm’ and are repeatedly reminded of. And then real life gets in the way!
For most, the costs involved in looking after our bodies are too high and not just in financial terms! To commit to regular exercise, an appropriate balance of rest and work and a healthy diet is too high a price to pay, along with the demands of a busy life. Commitments, personalities and external factors (not least other people!) come crashing in and before long bad habits creep in, resolve flies out the window and that obese label doesn’t seem too far out of reach.
And then there’s Nutritional Therapy
If there is one therapy that levels the playing field, arguably it has to be nutritional therapy. Regardless of economic or social status we all eat and drink and to some extent control what goes into our bodies, thus impacting our health. Certainly, as a country in the developed world we have so much food and so much easy access to information we have little excuse not to make an effort to find out what our bodies need in order to function at their best. Indeed, the WHO states in its principles: “Informed opinion and active co-operation on the part of the public are of the utmost importance in the improvement of the health of the people.”
Nutritional Therapy looks at the whole person.
Taking into account the lifestyle, medical history, environment and background, the nutritional advisor works with the client to not only analyse a diet to determine where things might be proving problematic, but also to agree on changes that could be made to the diet, supplementing if appropriate or eliminating if necessary. Nutritional therapy is about empowering people to make positive, informed and healthy choices about their diet and enabling people to realise that by making simple changes not only their own health but their families health will improve. Ask athletes whether professional or amateur nutritional understanding and tweaks can improve performance, alter body fat and composition and make the difference to achieving goals or lessening fatigue. Nutritional therapy enables people to plan a healthy diet that incorporates the 6 nutrients central to health; sufficient fluid, carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals and takes the mystique out of nutrition, making it accessible to all. Nutritional therapy is exciting, timeless and can make a difference to all, whatever age or stage they might be.
Surely, we can put our pride aside, accept that maybe we don’t know all about nutrition, and make a concerted effort to sign up, influence the next generation and be responsible for lowering the statistics and positively live out, “You are what you eat!”