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Be the Master of your Own Body with Personalised Nutrition

By Judy Watson
Posted: 25th February 2015 10:34
Becoming a nutritionist was my default life setting.  I was brought up on a farm in the 70s and 80s, surrounded by fresh food and even enjoyed eating my Brussels sprouts!  I had fresh vegetables from the garden and fresh fruit from the orchard.  My mum also kept chickens which were fed fresh greens which naturally made their yolks bright yellow.  So I knew exactly where my food came from.  I was also not given crisps and chocolate with school packed lunches and only had fizzy pop once a week as a treat.  So my upbringing provided me with a good start to appreciating food for what it was. 
However there were limited opportunities for advancement on science courses at a typical modern Secondary School so I left to work in the hospitality industry, giving me a chance to broaden my horizons by working in London and Jersey.  Then in the early 90s I decided to go back in to education, studying Nutrition and Food Science at University followed by a Nutritional Therapy Consultants Diploma which took seven years to complete in total. 
After achieving my diploma I realised how food could be used as a therapy to assist with many health conditions and realised that I was eating too much wheat and dairy.  Since cutting down on dairy I now have less colds and cutting down on wheat has helped manage my weight.  I also started eating a greater variety of foods from pulses, nuts, seeds and brown rice.
From my in-depth studying I realised we can all be “masters of our own body” when having the correct knowledge of what dietary requirements and supplements we need to function at our best in the short term and long term.
Why is food still such a problem?
Eating healthily has never been more important and shouldn’t be a problem in the 21st Century with so much variety on offer.  Choice though has probably made it harder as there are more decisions on what to eat which unfortunately leaves too much processed and takeaway foods for our convenience.  Convenience is not good for our health as these foods are often nutrient deficient.  We are four generations down from the Second World War when rationing was prevalent; people were less obese because they were more physically active, and they had greater limits on sugars which they could eat.  Many people also had allotments for fresh vegetables with more nutrients.  While now many people still do not eat their five-a-day. 
What are we to do?
We should be changing our mind-set to eat fresher foods on a daily basis like we automatically clean our teeth every day.  They are low in salt, sugar and fat compared with many processed foods and still have beneficial nutrients.  As we have many automated systems to make daily life less physically challenging we need to be eating far less calories too.
Eating healthily often needs mindfulness which requires awareness of what and how much we are eating too.
The internet of knowledge can be mind-blowing!
With the internet there is a mind-blowing amount of information on food, diets and health but we are all individuals so what is right for one person is not right for another. 
Personalised nutrition to be the master of your body
While people see an accountant to sort out their finances and a lawyer to sort out legal matters a nutritionist should be an essential part on a person’s yearly check up to see if they are getting the correct dietary needs to manage their present lifestyle and also to help manage their future health from family hereditary concerns.  The value of this is priceless adding quality of years to life and being more effective on a daily basis to function better at work and getting daily chores done.
What to expect from a nutrition consultation
I take a detailed case history regarding your past and present health issues, your typical diet and find out about your lifestyle so I can be best effective at providing a dietary programme which suits your daily needs to reach your health goals.  I and many other nutritionists also practice functional medicine which involves recommending people to take blood/urine or saliva tests to find out more about what is going on with the body.  An adrenal saliva test measures cortisol levels throughout the day which should be high in the morning for alertness and low at night to help with sleep.  From this supplements can be added in on top of the diet to help a person regulate their stress hormones more efficiently.
As we travel further in the 21st Century there are more tests available to check our DNA which will become the future of more specific nutrition health programmes.  I recently trained with DNAfit and underwent a test which indicated I reacted to caffeine, which was no surprise, but also that I had high inflammatory markers which was a surprise!  Inflammation can be a trigger for many health conditions from arthritis, heart disease and diabetes.  From this, the report I received recommended that I increase my levels of essential fatty acids and antioxidants.  So this was a valuable test for my future nutrition and health needs.  As I am now approaching 50 this information is priceless for the benefits it should bring.
The future of food and health is to think fresh and think portion control to help your body function at its best.  It is also important to include an annual nutrition check-up on your list in order to live a long and active life both physically and emotionally.
Judy Watson Nutritional Therapy Consultant BSc (Hons)DipION Mbant CNHC
Judy Watson gained a Degree in Nutrition and Food Science in 1996.  Then went on to Study at the renowned institute of Optimum Nutrition London in 2000.
She has been a resident Nutritionist for Champneys Health Spa Group for over 12 years and also has clinics in Hertfordshire and London.  Over the years has helped over 5000 people with individual consultations with weight management, digestive problems: IBS, food intolerances, low energy, mild depression, premenstrual syndrome (pms), skin health, and managing stress. 

Spent a year as an alternative health columnist for NAT-MAGS Real People magazine and is at present Contributory Author of Optimum Nutrition Magazine and
In 2014 trained to be a DNAfit practitioner taking Nutrition and health into the 21st Century while having an interest in older people’s health now that we are all living much longer.
Contact details
Twiter: judywatson@ heatlhyglow

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