The IFM (Institute of Functional Medicine) defines functional nutrition as an approach that “emphasizes the importance of high-quality foods and phytonutrient diversity to address clinical imbalances and move people to the highest expression of health”.
Functional nutrition requires nutritional therapists to take a closer look at the patient as a whole person (mind, body, spirit) and base nutrition and lifestyle recommendations on the underlying causes of disease or dysfunction. It practically applies the latest theories and research in nutrition and health sciences to individuals seeking to manage chronic disease or promote optimum health. The focus is improving physiological function of a number of bodily systems, including the digestive, immune, endocrine and cardiovascular systems, whilst also improving mental and emotional wellbeing.
What does it involve?
Each session lasts an hour and involves initially taking an in-depth medical history, followed by an in-depth discussion and analysis of nutrition and lifestyle. This will often include stress management; sleep hygiene; environmental toxin exposure and exercise and movement. Where appropriate hormonal, toxicity, vitamin and mineral status testing will be suggested.
Following each appointment an email is sent summarising the session including points to work on and containing relevant handouts and materials to support the suggested changes to diet and lifestyle.
Over the last 15 years, Charlotte has studied with many different institutions, the latest being The Integrative Women’s Health Institute. She is fully insured and currently a member of The Complementary Medical Association and the International Institute for Complementary Therapists.