Ljupka Peev Naturopath, Nutrition, Herbal Medicine for women's health and fertility.

NUTRITIONAL MEDICINE

 

 

 

 

A healthy diet is the cornerstone of good health and wellbeing. Poor nutrition is known to directly cause, or at least contribute to, all manner of illness, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, specific cancers, osteoporosis, infertility, thyroid disturbance, insomnia, and the list goes on. Dietary advice and management, based on the current available evidence, is the first line of treatment of some chronic conditions, such as diabetes, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), obesity and metabolic syndrome, to name a few. Every life stage has different dietary requirements and so adjustments need to be made in childhood, adolescents, young adulthood, middle age, preconception, pregnancy, menopause, and older age.

How can a Naturopath help?
Nutritional Supplementation
Quality & Safety of Supplements

 

How can a Naturopath help?

Although the importance of good eating is well understood, it can often be very difficult to navigate the plethora of information available today. This is where a healthcare professional trained in nutritional medicine can help. Dietary assessment enables the practitioner to assess any nutrient deficiencies, as well as identify any risk factors for future illness. This assessment includes not only the type of food eaten, but also the quantity of food (serving size), regularity of meals, the quality of the ingredients and fluid intake.

 

Nutritional Supplementation

Nutritional supplements (vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other compound) may be used to supplement, or top up the diet and correct dietary deficiencies. Any deficiencies should ideally be corrected through dietary adjustment and not nutritional supplementation alone. However, this may not always be possible. Allergies to certain foods, gastrointestinal diseases, poor soil quality and thus nutrient content of food, may all contribute to deficiencies that may not be easily corrected through diet alone. In cases such as these, nutritional supplementation may be warranted.

Nutritional supplements may also be used as therapeutic agents. In this instance, there may not be an underlying deficiency, but rather the nutrient is used because it has a pharmacological action. For example, high-dose omega 3 fatty acids, as found in fish oil, have anti-inflammatory properties.

 

Quality & Safety of Supplements

Quality of nutritional supplements available over the counter is of constant concern and very little information about quality can be obtained from the label. Important aspects that contribute to the quality of a product include:

  • where it come from (starting material);
  • how it is processed or manufactured;
  • what other ingredients it contains;
  • what form of each specific nutrient it contains;
  • if there are any impurities or contaminants.

Although the Australian government sets standards for these products, as governed by the Therapeutic Goods Act (TGA), these standards are not always the best available. For example, fish oil quality standards vary around the world, with Europe and the United States having standards that exceed our own. Poorer quality fish oil supplements may contain greater levels of heavy metals (including mercury and lead) and pesticides that accumulate in the body compared with oils of a higher standard. As well as this, they may be highly oxidised or rancid. The label usually does not provide this information and some companies may not provide a certificate of analysis on their products.

Due to the issues surrounding the quality of nutritional supplements, Ljupka spends much time seeking out and researching the quality of the nutritional supplements that she recommends. Only those with the strictest quality specification standards are used, from companies who are transparent with their product information.

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