people smilingHormones just affect women at certain times of the month - right?    Yes, but there is far more to them than that.

Hormones are chemical messengers that communicate between endocrine glands or an endocrine gland and an organ. Many physiological processes in the body including growth, metabolism, appetite, puberty and fertility in both males and females are affected by hormones.

Sub-optimal nutrition and poor detoxification processes may contribute towards hormonal imbalances and ongoing unwanted symptoms.

 

Do you have any of these symptoms?

  • Menstrual problems – heavy, painful or irregular periods
  • Breast tenderness
  • Irritability, mood swings
  • Fertility problems
  • Carbohydrate/chocolate cravings
  • Headaches/migraines
  • Fatigue
  • Poor memory
  • Depression/anxiety
  • Low libido
  • Insomnia
  • Facial hair
  • Acne
  • Unexplained weight gain – all over or just around the middle
  • Male pattern baldness

Many of these symptoms are attributed to pre-menstrual syndrome, peri-menopause, menopause and thyroid dysfunction, but that doesn't mean you have to put up with them. Conditions associated with hormonal imbalance also include:

  • Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome
  • Endometriosis
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Fibroids

How can NutriJen help?
After listening to your health history and reviewing your food diary I can devise a personalised nutrition plan that will address your own hormonal imbalances. Whatever your stage in life by reviewing your health, diet and lifestyle I can support you in incorporating these changes, re-balancing your hormones and improving your quality of life.

Laboratory testing may be advised to establish levels of hormones, this can be arranged after discussion, at an additional cost.

apple and bunMost people know that diabetes is a serious blood sugar problem. However, for many people a blood sugar imbalance can be a niggling health problem that just makes them feel not as great as they could do.

Do you recognise any of these symptoms?

  • sugar/carbohydrate cravings
  • pre-menstrual syndrome
  • headaches
  • night time waking, particularly between 4-5am
  • irritability, poor concentration or shakiness when a meal is missed
  • fatigue
  • energy dips, particularly after lunch or 3-4pm
  • weight gain around the middle, with a waist – hip ratio greater than 0.8 for women or 1 for men
  • difficulty getting up in the morning

Glucose (sugar) is the primary fuel for the body and under normal circumstances it is transported from the liver to the cells, via the bloodstream at a steady rate appropriate to the body's needs, whether you are relaxing or exercising. For some people problems may arise with this process leading to dysglycaemia, or blood sugar imbalance. This can cause you to feel just not quite right, however, an ongoing blood sugar imbalance can lead to long-term health problems including:

  • Insulin resistance
  • Poly cystic ovary syndrome
  • Non-alcoholic fatty live diseases
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Type 2 diabetes

The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that 1.5 million deaths were directly caused by diabetes in 2012 and WHO projects that diabetes will be the 7th leading cause of death in 2030. Furthermore, in 2007 the number of people globally with impaired glucose tolerance was 308 million this is estimated to increase to 418 million by 2025.


These are startling facts for a condition that is largely preventable. The good news is that small changes to your diet can help to balance blood sugar levels and improve energy, regulate weight and mood and generally make you feel better about yourself. Recent research (1) has also demonstrated that the correct dietary changes can help to reduce the risk of diabetes.

How can NutriJen help you?
By assessing your health history and reviewing your food diary I can devise a personalised nutrition plan that will show you:

  • how and when to eat correctly
  • foods that will help to maintain your blood sugar levels
  • foods to avoid

I can support you in making these changes that will improve your overall health and well-being and increase energy and vitality.

 

Reference

1. Von Bibra H, Wulf G, St John Sutton M, Pfützner A, Schuster T, Heilmeyer P (2014) Low-carbohydrate/high-protein diet improves diastolic cardiac function and the metabolic syndrome in overweight-obese patients with type 2 diabetes. International Journal of Cardiology Metabolic & Endocrine, 2: 11-18.

Have you been feeton a diet for longer than you can remember with little  change?

Do you yo-yo diet?
Would you like to lose some belly fat before your summer holiday?
Have you got an important event coming up? A wedding – yours, your son's or daughter's, are you a bridesmaid? An anniversary?

 

Whatever the reason would you like to lose weight and feel better?
 

Eating well is not complicated but it can be difficult to do on a daily basis with the pressure of family, work, looking after elderly relatives. Sometimes we don't stop to think about what we are eating and fall into a routine of the same meals even if we know they are not the best for us. It can be difficult to take the time to review our eating habits and make the desired changes.

If you have been dieting for a long time it can become more difficult to lose even a small amount of weight, the body adjusts to a lower calorie intake and the basal metabolic rate lowers, therefore fewer calories are required for the body to function. This is why some people may complain that they hardly eat anything and still they can't lose weight. By addressing your body's needs it is possible to "reset" the body, increasing the calorie demands and initiating weight loss.

 

How can NutriJen help?
After listening to your health and diet history and reviewing your food diary I can devise a personalised nutrition plan that will address your own body's needs and support you in making the changes to lose weight and maintain that weight loss.

For those with a history of dieting and difficulty in losing weight I offer a 10 week weight loss plan in which I will:

  • Analyse your current diet
  • Monitor your weight and body composition
  • Establish your body's own nutritional demands
  • Introduce you to the key concepts required for weight loss
  • Advise you on the best foods to eat
  • Suggest meal plans and recipe ideas if required

I will also support you in identifying and modifying any factors or habits that are stopping you from losing weight.

This is a personalised plan for you not a one size fits all approach to weight loss and consists of:

  • Week 1 – 90 minute full consultation
  • Week 2 and week 10 – 30 minute consultations
  • Weeks 4, 6 and 8 – 20 minute consultations

Further email or telephone support is also included.

Older couple 1The UK has an ageing population, it is speculated that by 2020 50% of the population will be over 50 years of age. However, as life expectancy lengthens individuals can expect to live their last 7-9 years with a disability.

Furthermore, estimates suggest that in the UK, 36% of those aged 65-74 and 47% of those over 75 years have a limiting long-term illness. Changes may begin to occur as early as our 40's and therefore, it is becoming increasingly more important for individuals to have an awareness of their health and measures that may be taken to improve it.

My experience as a nurse and a Health Visitor has given me a special interest in maintaining health through our later years. I will offer support to improve body processes such as digestion, immune function and reducing oxidative stress thereby helping individuals overcome or delay some of the conditions associated with ageing, improving their functional health and their diet.

Natural hormone balancing - Nutritional help and support for addressing the peri-menopause, menopause and andropause. 

Immune system - Nutritional help to strengthen the immune system, preventing frequent colds and infections.

Optimising gastro-intestinal health - Improving digestion, elimination and increasing tolerance to a range of foods.

Cardiovascular health - Supporting you to make changes to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, particularly where there is a family history of the disease. I can also, working with the approval of your GP, support and manage a diagnosed condition.

Optimising energy levels - Support to minimise fatigue, re-energise and restore vitality.

Weight management - Advising and supporting you to make the changes necessary to maintain a healthy weight.

 

sinsAre you a keen amateur athlete?
Are you training for an endurance challenge?
Are you doing heavy weight training on a regular basis?

 

 

Do you have frequent colds?
Do you have digestive discomfort?
Do you have difficulty recovering between training sessions?
Would you like to improve your performance?
Would you like to lose body fat or increase muscle mass?


Those who take part in regular intense exercise or sport may have particular dietary needs to support their training. The right nutrition is important for:


• Providing fuel and supporting training
• Supporting recovery
• Supporting the immune system
• Preventing injury and reducing fatigue
• Ensuring the correct energy balance for managing weight


Correct nutrition will lay the foundations of good health by supporting digestion, the immune system and balancing hormones, from this base athletic performance can be maximised giving you the results you desire.


How can NutriJen help?

Following a comprehensive assessment of your current health, diet, training and lifestyle a personalised nutrition plan will be devised. This will focus on your needs for training and recovery and if applicable nutrition needs for competition days. In addition to considering your training needs, any health concerns (poor digestion or weakened immune system) will be addressed to ensure that you can reach your potential.

rsz dollarphotoclub 56892930How often have you heard "you are what you eat"? This is true to some extent, however, even those eating the healthiest diets need a functioning digestive system in order for food to be processed properly and for the benefits to be reaped.

Poor digestion may mean that nutrients are not being absorbed. Absorption difficulties may result in food sensitivities, skin rashes, headaches, diarrhoea or lack of weight gain, particularly in children. Bloating, belching and gas may be an indication that you are fermenting food rather than digesting it.

Do you suffer with any of these symptoms?

  • Abdominal bloating
  • Belching or flatulence
  • Acid reflux/heartburn
  • Constipation, diarrhoea or both
  • Abdominal cramping
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Pale stools and/or stools that float

Have you started to limit certain foods because they don't agree with you?
Have you had a doctor's diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome?
Have you had a doctor's diagnosis of an auto-immune disease?

However, imbalances in the gut do not always manifest as digestive symptoms and changes in cognitive function, mood changes, headaches, joint pain, fatigue and behavioural problems may all indicate that digestive health needs to be assessed.

Laboratory testing is often helpful in identifying imbalances in the gastrointestinal tract, these may include:

  • Stool tests
  • Urine tests
  • Breath tests

Underlying imbalances that may lead to digestive discomfort include:

  • High or low stomach acid production
  • Poor enzyme production or secretion
  • Poor bile production or bile flow
  • Imbalance of gut microflora including yeast, parasites or low levels of "friendly bacteria"
  • Leaky gut
  • Lack of dietary fibre-high
  • Poor chewing and rushed eating

 

How can NutriJen help?
Improving your digestive function can have a positive impact on your overall well-being and quality of life. If you have any of the symptoms above and wish to reap the benefits of what you are eating then I can help to assess and identify the underlying cause and support you to make the necessary changes to your diet and lifestyle.

 

Please be aware that some digestive symptoms require more urgent medical care:

  • Severe pain in the stomach or abdomen
  • Persistant changes in bowel habit
  • Blood in the stool, sputum or vomit

 

A word about FODMAP's and Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Many people have occasions when they feel bloated or have abdominal cramping, diarrhoea or constipation. These symptoms may be mild and too infrequent to worry about. However, for those with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), these are chronic symptoms that affect daily life. There is a lot of information that suggests that there is a link with food and people with IBS may be told to limit foods such as caffeine or alcohol as well as increasing fibre and fluid intake. However, as digestive symptoms vary from person to person, managing them with a one-size-fits all approach is not ideal. Following a low-FODMAP diet is a relatively new therapeutical approach to manage symptoms in most people with IBS.

FODMAP's are complex molecules that are found in many of the carbohydrates foods that we eat and we are encouraged to incorporate some, such as legumes, lentils, fruit and vegetables as part of a healthy diet. However, some people have difficulty digesting and absorbing these molecules and they ferment in the intestines causing many symptoms that are associated with Irritable Bowel Syndrome: abdominal pain, bloating and distension, nausea, altered bowel habits (constipation, diarrhoea or alternating between the two), flatulence.

FODMAPs is an acronym (abbreviation) referring to Fermentable Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides and Polyols.
Some food examples are:
Fructose – honey, high fructose corn syrup and some fruits: apples, watermelon, pear, mango
Lactose – all milk and milk products, including sheep and goat milk
Fructans (fructo-oligosaccharides, FOS) – wheat, onions, rye, garlic, artichokes, cashews, pistachios, chicory
Galactans (galacto-oligosaccharides, GOS) – legumes, lentils, chickpeas
Polyols – apples, apricots, cherries, pears, plums, prunes, sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, eythritol

The low FODMAP's diet was developed at Monash University in Australia for the relief of symptoms of IBS and more people are becoming aware of excluding FODMAP's from their diet, however, it is a restrictive diet and not intended to be followed long-term. Indeed, following this long-term could result in some nutrient deficiencies.

FODMAP's and Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO)
Fermentation of FODMAP's in the small bowel may result in an overgrowth of bacteria causing digestive discomfort and IBS. SIBO may be detected by conducting a Hydrogen Breath Test, this may be done privately or through the NHS in some areas. A strict restriction of all high FODMAP foods for only 2-6 weeks alongside specific supplements to address the SIBO is then followed by the careful reintroduction FODMAP foods.

The introduction of a low FODMAP diet should be done under the supervision of qualified nutritional therapist or dietician.