It’s undeniable that diet is a fundamental aspect of our health, with poor diet almost always being one of the factors in any type of illness. But it’s not always easy to know what type of diet will best meet your body’s needs, and that’s when a nutritional therapist comes in handy.
Whether you want to improve your diet to be more healthy, or you’re looking to shape up your nutrition to treat a specific illness, a nutritional therapist can tailor a diet plan based on your medical records, physical examination and dietary history to get the best results.
Let’s take a look at the main categories of illnesses and how improved nutrition can make a huge difference:
- Risk factors: Cardiovascular diseases, including coronary artery disease and stroke, can be fatal and are often the result of symptoms such as high blood pressure, obesity, insulin resistance and many others, all of which can be significantly reduced with proper diet.
- How a nutritional therapist can help: Setting up a strict diet plan with nutrient-rich foods, controlled portions of refined grains and sugars, and plenty of vegetables can help your heart immensely. You’ll likely be encouraged to eat lots of healthy fats and to snack on more whole foods like nuts and seeds, and, a nutritional therapist can recommend an exercise regimen to help keep those risk factors at bay.
- Risk factors: Having irregular digestion can lead to many symptoms, including bloating, abdominal pain and heartburn, to name just a few. It can also lead to more serious illnesses, such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome which can then cause muscle spasms, bacterial overgrowth, food sensitivities and numerous problems with the immune system.
- How a nutritional therapist can help: When your digestive tract is not functioning properly, it might mean that your body isn’t absorbing the nutrients it needs, which can lead to further health issues. A good place to start, then, is to choose foods that are best for repairing your digestive tract. Other factors like how fast you chew your food or how much stress you’re feeling can also play a big role — which your nutritional therapist can take under consideration.
- Risk factors: Hormonal imbalance can be a symptom of various disorders, whether it’s hormone dysfunction, overworked adrenal glands or thyroid disorders. These can lead to an array of serious health issues related to your metabolism, growth, healing, sexual function and mood.
- How a nutritional therapist can help: Lots of foods can improve hormonal imbalances, but it all depends on the type of hormone that’s problematic to your body. There are over 50 different types of hormones in your body, and a nutritional therapist can work closely with you to figure out where exactly lies the problem. In the meantime, have a look at our recent article on the importance of hormonal balance.
- Risk factors: Research shows that the average human is more stressed than ever before, thanks to our fast-paced culture and demands from our personal and professional lives. When combined with long, tedious hours in front of the computer at work, we can experience huge spikes in anxiety, tension, frustration and many other emotions that aren’t good for mental health.
- How a nutritional therapist can help: With high levels of stress in your life, it’s common for your body to crave sweet or fatty foods that can seem like rewards. In fact, these foods are the opposite of what the body needs to recover from mental fatigue. A proper diet plan that combines both nutritional foods as well as rewarding, delicious treats is a much better solution.
- Risk factors: Fatigue is one of the most common symptoms of modern life, and with it comes depression, dehydration, obesity, bipolar disorders or even cancer. While there is an array of factors that contribute to fatigue — ranging from poor sleep quality to high levels of stress — eating the right foods to provide the energy you need is critical.
- How a nutritional therapist can help: A good nutrition plan to help boost your energy will focus on balancing blood sugar levels and reducing stimulants. It will also include specific foods that can naturally give you more energy, and encourage you to stay away from substances thought to boost energy like caffeine (which, as we’ve discussed in this article, can actually do more harm than good).
- Risk factors: The rate at which your body processes food can have a tremendous impact on your figure and fitness. But on top of not being able to lose weight, there are other negative effects of a slow metabolism, including chronic fatigue, hypothyroidism, high cholesterol, high blood sugar, and high blood pressure.
- How a nutritional therapist can help: Of course, it’s a no brainer that the right diet is crucial for improving your metabolism and weight loss. A good nutritional therapist will help balance your nutrient intake, daily routine and workouts to maximize results as soon as possible. Dieting incorrectly without the help of a professional can be dangerous and may contribute to even further weight gain in the long term.