What is Functional Nutritional Therapy?
Functional Nutritional Therapy is based on the belief that true health can only be achieved through a foundational approach to nutrition and lifestyle.
There is no “one-size fits all” when it comes to diet but any dietary recommendation must be rooted on prioritizing properly-prepared, nutrient-dense whole foods, and must be customized to each person’s bio-individual needs and circumstances.
However, a healthy diet is often not enough. In order to achieve overall health, Functional Nutrition also focuses on the following foundations:
- Hydration. Maintaining proper hydration according to each person’s physiology, activity level and environmental circumstances is one of the first steps we can take to improve our health. Water is the most important nutrient making up about 60% of total human body mass. But we must actually absorb the water we drink, a process that requires an adequate amount of mineral electrolytes.
- Digestion and Elimination. Even the best diet would be useless if we can’t absorb the nutrients from the food we ingest. For this reason alone, healthy digestion is fundamental for overall health. An efficient elimination is also crucial for removing undigested food and potentially harmful toxins from our body.
- Balance Gut Microbiota. Our gut microbiota carry out important immune system functions and produce essential nutrients. Recent evidence suggests it might even have a role in driving food sensitivities, affecting blood sugar levels and affecting mood and restful sleep.
- Blood Sugar Regulation. The food we ingest can be ultimately converted to glucose which is then used by every cell of our body to produce energy. However, it is essential to maintain blood sugar levels in a very tight range. Blood sugar imbalances can frequently manifest as or exacerbate chronic stress, anxiety, depression, attention deficit disorders, brain fog, fatigue, irritability and many other symptoms.
- Fatty Acids. Ensuring the consumption of plenty of healthy fats is essential for brain development, growth and function. Fats also provide the building blocks for cell membranes and hormones, and have an important role in maintaining a healthy inflammatory response.
- Vitamins and Minerals. Most vitamins and all minerals are essential nutrients, meaning that our bodies can’t produce them, we must obtain them from the food and beverages we ingest. Minerals are especially important for brain function as they regulate the signaling between nerve cells. Vitamins and Minerals are also part of the building blocks of our cells and work as cofactors and signaling molecules to regulate and fine-tune pretty much all of our body functions.
In addition to providing personalized nutritional advice and support, lifestyle recommendations for stress management, exercise and movement, and sleep hygiene are also integrated in every program. To help regulate and speed up the healing process, professional-grade nutritional supplements and herbals might be recommended. Specialized laboratory testing is also available when indicated.
Unlike the traditional medical model where the individual is expected to follow orders from their healthcare practitioner, Functional Nutrition clients are active participants of their own healing journey. I take the time to review your health history, food journals, and any signs and symptoms of nutritional deficiencies you may be presenting. I then use all of this information to customize a plan according to your needs. But, ultimately, a true commitment and dynamic participation from you is critical for the success of your program.
Book a Free Consultation with Tere
If you’re interested in working with me, press the button below to schedule a free video call. We will discuss your health challenges and goals to determine if Nutritional Therapy is right for you and to assess how many sessions you may require to address your needs.