My Nutrition Story
My passion for great nutrition
I’m an experienced, highly qualified, nutritionist, nutritional therapist and a passionate foodie! I love to research all aspects of nutrition and how it affects the human body so I have specialised in several different areas of nutrition and nutritional therapy so I can work with a wide variety of people from tiny babies to 97 years old so far! In fact I have also qualified in small animal nutrition so I’m able to help pets as well as their owners achieve a healthy balanced diet and an active, stress free lifestyle! I love teaching people how to cook delicious and nutritious healthy dishes and how to make your own fermented foods and drinks, homemade cheeses and sourdough bread and pizzas.
When people ask me why optimum nutrition using food as your medicine and healthy living are so important to me personally, there is a short and a long answer.
The short answer
I love eating delicious and nutritious dishes and always have done. I’m a real foodie and appreciate the quality of the food I eat. I aim to eat seasonally and strive to eat as much fresh, locally sourced, organic food as I can. I enjoy eating a Mediterranean diet and following a healthy, active lifestyle. I see eating out with friends and family as a great social opportunity not to be rushed.
I am blessed to have more free time than most due to the flexible nature of my profession working in the field of nutrition, which gives me the opportunity to experiment with new flavours and combinations to give a healthy new twist to a classic recipe. I love teaching people to cook and make their own fermented foods, homemade cheese and sourdough bread. The more we cook from scratch the more goodness we can put into our daily diet.
The long answer
I was given a late cancer diagnosis in the spring of 2012, which stopped my life in its tracks. I was a single parent with two children aged only 15 and 19 at the time so my thoughts went straight to the usual. Who will look after my children if something happens to me? How will they cope without me?
Due to the size and position of the tumours, an operation to remove them was out of the question. This left me with one remaining option – a six month experimental chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment programme run by The Royal Marsden hospital in London.
Whilst I was waiting for the treatment to begin and for the oncologists to decide exactly what they were going to put my body through, I took my mind off everything by researching the best nutrition, complementary therapies and exercises that I could follow during and after treatment to maximise the impact and aid a speedy recovery. I was lucky that through my previous teaching experience and training as a nutritional chef I already had an extensive knowledge of nutrition and healthy eating. My love and passion for food and a healthy lifestyle led me to a greater understanding of how food could help heal my body which I found absolutely fascinating!!
Positive Mental Attitude
Eventually my treatment began and after six months of gruelling external and internal radiotherapy (brachytherapy), weekly chemotherapy treatment and 2 procedures, the tumours had shrunk slightly, but they hadn’t disappeared. So I decided to take a break from my cancer treatment to rest my body and focus on healing my body and calming my mind.
I stayed positive and focused on my daily gratitude diary and created my healthy vision board with health goals to achieve gradually as I recovered. I exercised every day, sometimes yoga or pilates, sometimes just stretching, depending on my energy levels. Even five minutes is beneficial to stimulate your body. I practised mindfulness and meditation but most importantly, I followed a really healthy flexitarian diet with optimum nutrition packed full of goodness as the key element. I included plenty of organic fresh fruit and vegetables, plant based protein and incorporated top quality, natural plant based food supplements into my daily diet.
I began to notice that following this super healthy and positive lifestyle was helping to alleviate my symptoms of fatigue, dizziness, nausea, pain and inflammation, which are so typical during and after cancer treatment.
I returned to the hospital three months later for a scan and was delighted to learn that my tumours had disappeared completely. I could not believe my luck as sadly many from the original experimental treatment group did not survive.
I strongly believe that my positive mindset and determination, alongside eating a wide range of fresh, healthy foods, eliminating all processed foods, artificial colourings or food additives from my diet has been the central key to my recovery and healthy life. I feel very grateful and blessed as 7 years on there are only 28 ladies left from the original 250 ladies in our group who started the treatment at the same time as me. To date the longest anyone has lived so far after the same treatment is 8 years.
My Life Now
I enjoy cooking all my meals from scratch and use fresh, organic, seasonal local produce wherever possible. I love eating a varied and balanced diet with nutrient packed meals full of vegetables and goodness. I still eat meat and fish about once a week, but as a flexitarian I also have several days a week when I follow a purely plant-based diet. I take a wide range of high quality, plant based supplements to give me the nutrients I require in my diet as I still suffer from several side effects from my cancer treatment including arthritis and pelvic radiation disease. Part of my daily self care regime is to practise mindfulness and meditation and writing my gratitude journal. I spend time every day on self development and have learnt to improve my sleep pattern after reading and practising the techniques in The Chimp Paradox. I am genuinely blessed and incredibly grateful to be alive and well! I appreciate every day of my new life and love helping other people achieve their personal health goals.
Following my recovery, I wanted to help others improve their health and support them in their recovery from illness. Using the research I had carried out and the knowledge I had gained about food and nutrition, I decided to retrain as a specialist holistic nutritionist and nutritional therapist. I am now fully qualified to work with a full range of clients from pregnancy and birth through to a ripe old age! My oldest client so far is 97 years old!! For more information on booking a one to one nutrition consultation click here
For more information on the personalised healthy living programmes we offer please click here
I started my career as a primary school teacher before moving into secondary school where I taught Modern Languages and Food Technology and Life Skills as a trained nutritional chef. My passion is making and eating really tasty and nutritious food for all my family and friends to try. I’ve been teaching people how to cook and eat healthily for over 30 years and love to make new things and experiment with flavours and textures. I run a whole range of healthy eating workshops from cheese making, fermented foods and sourdough bread making, teaching you how to cook using healthy vegetarian and plant based recipes and putting a healthier twist on a classic dish. Come along to a workshop and have lots of fun cooking some healthy and delicious dishes. Click here to find out more and book your place.
My Qualifications Include:
- Advanced Diploma in Nutritional Therapy
- Advanced Diploma in Child Nutrition
- Advanced Diploma in Sports Nutrition
- Advanced Diploma in Weight Loss Management
- Advanced Diploma in Diabetes Prevention Through Healthy Diet & Lifestyle
- Advanced Diploma in Specialised Diets for Cancer Patients
- Advanced Diploma in Nutrition for Auto Immune Conditions
- Advanced Diploma in Specialised Diets for Eating Disorders
- Advanced Diploma in Small Animal Nutrition & Animal Weight Management
- Advanced Diploma in Chinese Medicine
- Advanced Diploma in Ayervedic Medicine
- Advanced Diploma in Fermented Foods
- MSc in Human Nutrition & Dietetics
- BA (hons) QTS in MFL & Food Technology
- Qualified Nutritional Chef
- Advanced Food Hygiene & Food Preparation Certificate
- CIPD Qualified Corporate Trainer
- MA in Education & Training
- I am a qualified counsellor for people with eating disorders and also have an NCT qualification to counsel women after miscarriage.
I speak fluent Spanish and I am a qualified Spanish interpreter and translator.