What is nutrition counselling?
Nutrition counselling addresses both what we eat and also how we feel about food and our bodies.
There are many reasons why our eating habits can become convoluted and bound up with negative emotions like guilt, anxiety and fear. Eating disorders – and disordered eating – exist on a spectrum and they are considered bio-psycho-social disorders. Simply put, there are biological, psychological and social factors that can both predispose and perpetuate these issues.
Therapy, nutrition counselling and rehabilitation will together help you re-nourish your mind and body to a place of optimal physiological functioning and cultivate a healthier relationship with food.
What to expect in nutrition counselling
Nutrition counselling may help with the following:
- Weight restoration
- Reducing binge eating and purging episodes
- Promotion of regular and balanced eating
- Psycho-education in nutrition science
This approach will provide you with tools to help neutralise your inner food critic and to manage difficult emotions without using food. In the long term, we will help you to re-build interoceptive awareness so that you can recognise your body’s hunger and fullness signals and rediscover the pleasures of food.
Our goal is to support you with lifelong tools to help you feel more confident and comfortable in nourishing your body so that, ultimately, you can focus on other important and meaningful areas of your life.
Intuitive eating benefits
Are food and your body taking up more brain space than you’d like? Are you dominated by endless arbitrary rules about food like when, how much and a fear of losing control? Are you fed up with yoyo dieting and endless cycles of weight loss and regain?
Intuitive eating is an evidence-based theory towards eating developed by US dietitians Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch.
Studies have shown intuitive eaters have better self-trust, emotional functioning, body image, reduced risk of eating disorders and disordered eating, less weight cycling and lower BMIs.
At the clinic, our nutritionist will help guide you through the 10 principles of intuitive eating:
- Reject the diet mentality
- Honour your hunger
- Make peace with food
- Challenge the food police
- Feel your fullness
- Discover the satisfaction factor
- Cope with difficult emotions without using food
- Respect your body
- Exercise – feel the difference
- Honour your health with gentle nutrition
The food and mood connection
Recent evidence associates overall diet quality with mental health across different life stages. Multiple studies show a direct dose-response correlation between a high quality diet and a reduced risk of developing mental disorders like depression.
Alongside therapy and medication, diet is a modifiable factor when it comes to our mental wellbeing.
Your nutritionist will help you explore your current food and eating patterns and make small sustainable changes to help improve your overall diet quality. We can also use food to support movement, sleep and stress management.
Nutrition optimisation - why’s it so important?
In 2017, the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) published a report concluding that adults do not consume enough fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and wholegrains. The last decade has seen an exponential rise in highly processed foods, sweetened beverages, diet food products and a change in eating habits including increased takeaways and eating on-the-go. Together, this has resulted in compromised nutrient intake with repercussions for our physical and mental health.
Our nutrition optimisation programme includes a thorough assessment of your medical history and current eating habits. Follow-up sessions will include recommendations for small sustainable changes to help improve overall diet quality and optimise nutrient intake.
Frequently asked questions
How many sessions will I need?
Will I receive a meal plan from my nutritionist?
Can I reach out to my nutritionist in between sessions?
Yes, your nutritionist will be available to you in between sessions should you have any questions following your sessions.