As a Nutritional Therapy Consultant, I utilize a unique holistic approach to health that generates results by optimizing and supporting the NTA foundations of health.
I received my nutritional therapist certification through the Nutritional Therapy Association, where an extensive questionnaire is used to determine what nutrition foundations are most out of balance and need support. When these foundations of nutrition are out of balance, many symptoms occur that will send you on a wild goose chase if you try to treat the symptom.
Instead, I look at what foundation needs support due to a client expressing many symptoms associated with a specific foundation. When the foundations of nutrition are balanced and given the necessary support, it is incredible how quickly symptoms can clear. EVERYTHING is connected in the body and dependent upon these foundations functioning optimally and being in balance.
Eating a nutrient dense diet is the # 1 nutrition foundation, but five other foundations are fundamental for optimal health. Poor nutrition and digestion are the root causes of many health conditions, including diabetes, insulin resistance, SIBO, and IBS.
Ensuring proper digestion is more than just taking a probiotic and eating gut-healthy foods. The NTA program teaches that the digestive system is a north to south process and that the primary organs involved in digestion are the stomach, pancreas, liver, and gallbladder. Learning this was pivotal for optimizing my digestion and the clients I have worked with.
Many of modern society’s health problems are due to eating processed foods that deplete the body of vital nutrients such as magnesium for blood sugar regulation. Utilizing the power of real food to correct nutritional imbalances is essential for optimal wellness.
Everyone has unique dietary needs and nutritional deficiencies. Often many people will need nutritional supplementation and diet and lifestyle changes to optimize all nutrition foundations.
I encourage you to track your food intake for an entire month using cronomter, which can help you determine what nutrients you lack. When you know what nutrients you are deficient in, you can search for foods high in that nutrient within the app.
So what are the NTA foundations of health that I support as a Nutritional Therapy Consultant through my NTA training at the Nutritional Therapy Association?
The NTA foundations of health are:
- Blood Sugar Balance
- Mineral Balance
- Essential Fatty Acids Balance
When these nutrition foundations are out of balance, it will affect everything, including your need for vitamins, adrenal stress, thyroid issues, hormonal problems, cardiovascular problems, and immune system challenges.
There is almost always a connection to an imbalance in the foundations of nutrition when symptoms occur. The answers to our health challenges lie in understanding the relationship between our health and these crucial building blocks, which are the foundations that have a ripple effect throughout the entire body.
Let’s delve into each foundation of nutrition a little deeper and talk about some symptoms that a person can experience when a foundation needs support.
The diet foundation used by a Nutritional Therapy Consultant
The foundation of healthy eating and making adjustments to the diet is the starting point for everyone. The modern diet has led to drastic changes in the average diet. As a result, many people are experiencing health challenges due to a processed food diet.
There has been an increase in the consumption of refined/ processed foods, which line 80% of grocery store isles and kitchen cupboards. It may seem simple and common sense to eat a nutrient-dense whole food diet of REAL food, but it is increasingly challenging in a world of convenient foods.
Eating the right types of whole foods is extremely important as the body depends upon obtaining vitamins, minerals, fats, protein, and carbohydrates from the diet found in whole foods. It all starts with the diet, fueling according to your metabolic rate.
Addressing food sensitivities that may be problematic for you, such as gluten, dairy, soy, and refined sugar, but again this is different for everyone. Identifying yours can be life-changing for digestive symptoms and immune challenges. Food sensitivities are often a “symptom” of poor digestive function as well.
With so many diets claiming to be the best, from paleo, keto to plant-based, it can be hard to know what to eat. As a nutritional therapy consultant, I help you to find out what diet is best for you because there is no one size fits all diet.
The foundation of Digestion
Digestion is one of my favorite foundations as your health begins in your gut. Learning how to improve gut health starts with supporting the primary organs involved in digestion.
Properly digesting and absorbing your food is key to good health as the body is dependent upon digestion to provide the body with the nutrients it needs to perform all its functions.
Also, 70-80 percent of your immune system lies in your gut, which is why immune challenges are connected to your digestive function with a need for a healthy terrain, gut flora, and intact gut lining.
Digestive symptoms such as bloating, acid reflux, burping, coated tongue, diarrhea, nausea, constipation, leaky gut, stomach pains, foul-smelling gas, bacterial imbalances, sense of excess fullness are all symptoms associated with poor digestive function. Many of these are symptoms of SIBO.
Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth is a common digestive problem. One of the underlying causes of SIBO that no one is talking about is having a sluggish gallbladder and low bile flow.
The Importance of Hydration
Properly hydrating the body is often overlooked, but water is the most crucial nutrient for the human body. Hydrating the body means drinking an appropriate amount of water for your body weight and activity level while also ensuring you are obtaining the necessary minerals that act as electrolytes to hydrate the body.
Signs of dehydration include headaches, back pain, cravings, cramps, migraines, etc. Water is important.
The Foundation of Blood Sugar Balance
The foundation of blood sugar balance is almost always the number one priority, and the foundation to be out of balance in so many people, including “healthy” people. The consumption of refined carbohydrates, sugar, and processed fats is the number one culprit for throwing blood sugar out of balance, and blood sugar balance is directly related to diet and liver function.
I LOVE bringing blood sugar back to balance. From mood swings, fluctuating energy levels to weight gain, fatigue, dizziness, anxiety, insulin resistance, sleep problems, hormonal issues, sugar cravings, irritability, afternoon crashes, and coffee addictions, you name it. This foundation is in serious need of support and lifestyle/dietary changes by using foods to balance blood sugar.
A fatty liver disrupts blood sugar balance and is an underlying cause of diabetes, insulin resistance, and difficulty losing weight. A plant-based diet can reverse insulin resistance, and choline is an essential nutrient to prevent fatty liver.
Dietary changes can significantly impact blood sugar levels, insulin resistance, and fatty liver.
Minerals have many roles in the body, such as:
- maintaining the pH balance in the body and of the blood
- helping with the contraction and relaxation of the muscles, including the heart
- are needed to build strong bones.
Most often, digestion needs to be optimized, such as optimizing stomach acid so that calcium can be broken down and absorbed.
Supporting the liver and gallbladder with bile production and flow is critical as bile is needed to absorb fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin K2 and vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 and K2 are essential to utilize calcium in the body to make healthy bones.
As you can see, it can be more complex than just taking a multi-mineral supplement. Each individual may indicate support in additional areas depending on what organs are presenting with signs and symptoms.
Fatty Acid Balance
With inflammation being at the root of many chronic diseases, it is essential to obtain the appropriate amount of fats in the diet that is in balance with each other. Fats are conjugated into hormone-like substances called prostaglandins, which can either be pro-inflammatory or anti-inflammatory.
The body needs both the ability to inflame to heal and to anti-inflame for the healing process. The body needs to be provided with the correct balance of healthy fats and the ability to digest and absorb those fats to assist with the healing process.
Omega-three fats are anti-inflammatory, help to reduce inflammation, promote weight loss, and improve insulin sensitivity. Are you getting enough omega-three fats in your diet? Sunflower lecithin is rich in omega six fats and phosphatidylcholine, which is crucial for digestion, fatty liver and a sluggish gallbladder.
The body has an innate intelligence and tremendous capacity to heal itself and maintain homeostasis. Homeostasis is what the body is always looking to achieve. Nutritional therapy consultants look to find out what is out of balance and what organ requires support. Symptoms are messengers of imbalances in the body.
Everyone deserves to have good health and your body also deserves to be taken care of. I want to inspire you to know that there are things you can do to optimize your health today.
By focusing on these foundations of nutrition or just taking small steps to making healthier food and lifestyle choices, your body will be thanking you!
As a Nutritional Therapy Consultant, I create tailored dietary and supplemental health plans to optimize an individual’s health by evaluating where imbalances lie in the body.
I then determine how to best support your body with both diet and supplement recommendations after evaluating a 3-day food journal, 300 questions on symptoms related to specific foundational imbalances, and conducting an initial interview where I get to learn about your personal story. Learn more about services here.
There is no one size fits all perfect diet or supplement that will work for everyone, which is why I love getting to know YOUR story so that I can work with you to create a customized plan to bring your body back to balance and restore health, energy, good digestive function, and optimal weight.
Why I believe the NTA offers the best online Nutritional Therapist Courses
I received my nutritional training through the Nutritional Therapy Association, where I learned about dietary therapy and the NTA foundations of health. It is a unique nutritional training that is not taught elsewhere.
Before I signed up for the program, I already knew a lot about health and just wanted to become a certified nutritional therapist to work with clients and, of course, expand my knowledge. Did the curriculum ever blow me away! It was much more extensive than I thought, and my lead instructor was a wealth of knowledge.
The practice of nutritional therapy combined with a food-first approach and well-balanced lifestyle yields phenomenal results as the modern diet has so many negative effects. The body’s innate intelligence has an incredible capacity to heal, and the questionnaire that correlates to each of the NTA foundations of health helps to pinpoint exactly where to start. The NTA teaches you how to support each foundation and assess each unique individual’s nutritional needs.
I am forever grateful for the education I received through the NTA, which is the best nutritional therapist course I have taken. Since then, I have continued to delve further into genetics, SIBO, and insulin resistance, as these were the issues that I struggled with.
As part of the community outreach project in the NTA curriculum, I started this blog where I continue to share everything I learn. And here I am 300 plus posts later with a lot more to say, but it all started with signing up to become a Nutritional Therapy Consultant and learning about the NTA foundations of health.