Is Andy a doctor?
Andy is not a medical doctor. She is a registered nutritional therapy practitioner, who specialises in gut-psychology/gut-physiology syndromes. “Sugar Doctor” is Andy’s brand name, because she believes consuming too many refined sugars causes many gut-related health issues, which research is now showing drive most chronic illnesses.
Why should we eat less sugar?
Most health issues arise in the gut, where refined sugars cause havoc. Andy has found that balancing blood sugar levels through nutrition has been key to managing and addressing her daughter’s autistic spectrum disorder symptoms, in addition to optimising her own health after her cancer diagnosis.
Andy believes that becoming more physically active, avoiding processed foods, foods that are high in sugar and refined carbohydrates, along with keeping insulin levels in check, are all vital components of a gut-healthy diet. These are some of the first steps towards relieving many of the symptoms associated with autism and have been shown to encourage optimal health during cancer remission. They can also significantly help people with other symptoms, or those looking to improve their health in general.
Find out more about why we should Live Sugar Safe here.
What does it mean to be BANT-registered and why is it important to choose a registered nutritional therapy practitioner?
BANT-registered nutritional therapy practitioners have undertaken all the necessary training to understand the theory and practice of nutritional therapy. They are regulated by the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC). By choosing registered nutritional therapy practitioners, you can be confident that they are properly trained, qualified and insured, and that they abide by the CNHC’s Code of Conduct.
Why did Andy change to nutritional therapy from law?
Andy has a daughter with an Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and the associated gut symptoms. Additionally, several years ago, she got a cancer diagnosis herself; she’s now in remission. It is for these reasons that Andy changed profession from a lawyer to a registered nutritional therapy practitioner, and why she calls herself the “Sugar Doctor”.
What is nutritional therapy?
Nutritional therapy focuses on preventing ill-health and promoting optimal health through nutrition, exercise and stress management, using a wide variety of tools, including the latest laboratory testing, if appropriate.
It recognises that every client is unique with his or her own set of dietary and other requirements. For this reason, registered nutritional therapy practitioners spend time with clients asking detailed questions about their family history, lifestyle, environment and other factors, which may influence that client’s long-term health.
Consultations tailor a nutritional lifestyle programme to each individual client to address that client’s unique needs and to help them achieve their wellness goals.
Because nutritional therapy is a complementary medicine, registered nutritional therapy practitioners often work together with a client’s medical professionals. They will always refer a client back to his/her medical professional with symptoms that may require further investigation, explaining any nutritional therapy recommendations, where necessary.
What happens before a consultation?
Before attending your first consultation, clients will complete a Nutritional Therapy Questionnaire (NTQ), and e-mail it to Andy at least two days before the first appointment. This is to give her an idea of their health issues and diets beforehand. Any parts of the form that they are unclear about may be filled in and discussed with Andy during the consultation.
Prior to the initial consultation, clients will also download and sign Andy’s terms of engagement, which they bring with them to the consultation. If for some reason they don’t manage to do so, clients can read and sign them at their first consultation.
What is a typical first consultation like?
Typically, in a first consultation, Andy discusses with her clients their health goals and the main reason they have come to see her. Together, they will discuss their family history, possible triggers and their symptoms. Andy will then devise a dietary health strategy with them, which may involve supplements and functional tests. She will arrange follow-up consultations to assess progress and discuss functional test results, if appropriate.
What happens at follow-up appointments?
After each initial consultation, follow-up appointments are made for between four to six weeks later, to discuss each client’s progress on the Health Optimisation Programme, and to go through any functional test results, if appropriate. In most cases, several imbalances need to be addressed and Health Optimisation Programmes are modified in these appointments.
How long will consultations be required for?
Andy creates personal nutritional and lifestyle programmes based on each individual client’s health, history, symptoms and, if necessary, test results. The programmes run over an initial period of 12 weeks, or for a longer period if required. More serious cases can take months or weeks to become effective.
What type of cooking demonstrations are available?
Alkaline Dietary Protocol
For those following a strict alkaline diet that need to consume more plant-based foods and less animal foods, Andy shares the skills she has acquired on the Rouxbe professional plant-based cookery course. She provides useful tools for improvising and creating plant-based cookery dishes. This includes suggestions for daily meal plans.
FODMAPS Dietary Protocol
During these demonstrations, Andy creates simple plant-based recipes that everyone can enjoy while adhering to the FODMAPS protocol. Her recipes are designed for those with sensitive stomachs, as well as for those who feel that in order to keep their symptoms at bay, they are restricted to eating the same bland foods every day. Her demonstrations reveal the diversity of delicious options available within the margins of this protocol, and hope to motivate those who follow it to incorporate more variety into their otherwise plain diet.
Flexible healthy eating
One of Andy’s personal missions is to share her belief that everyone can take control of their health by starting in the kitchen. In these cooking demonstrations, she illustrates the art of preparing healthy, nutritious recipes that are delicious and easy to prepare. Each of these sessions is tailored to show that healthy eating need not be mundane and flavourless. Andy aims to spark a passion for food by revealing its importance as an essential component of an overall healthy lifestyle, shedding light on the veracity of the oft-quoted sentiment, “You are what you eat”.
How much sugar can I eat in a day?
Government recommendations are that “free/added” sugars (found in cakes, sweets, chocolates, biscuits, drinks, processed foods) should be limited to 30g per day for adults, 24g for children aged 7-10 years, and 19g per day for children aged 4-6 years.
How does sugar cause “havoc” in our gut?
An over-consumption of refined sugars (cakes, sweets, chocolates, white pasta, rice, bread, etc) causes a bacterial imbalance in our gut, which research is now showing is a major contributor towards chronic illness. This is because these sugars provide the fertiliser for the pathogenic (disease-causing) bacteria that have gained the upper hand. Reducing these sugars and living sugar safe will help you get back on track.
What is the difference between fructose in fruit, and fructose in sugar and high corn fructose syrup?
The fructose in sugar and high corn fructose syrup is considered alcohol without the buzz in terms of its ability to inflict liver damage. However, it is only this industrial type, rather than fruit fructose, that has been associated with declining liver function. Fruits contain fibre and many other beneficial nutrients and antioxidants. This means the fructose is bound up in these and isn’t absorbed as ‘pure’ in the same way as the type in sugar and high fructose corn syrup. However, for someone who is obese, dried fruits and other high fructose fruits such as pears, and plums, should be eaten sparingly.