Nutrition and Lifestyle Coaching
Alongside our neurological physiotherapy, we can offer nutrition and lifestyle coaching.
Nutrition and Lifestyle coaching aims to support clients with living a healthy and active life by translating the science of nutrition and wellbeing, making it relevant and easy to apply in everyday life.
Benefits of nutrition and lifestyle coaching include:
- Improved weight management
- Increased energy levels
- Improved motivation
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Feel more in control of own health.
Positive outcomes for our clients.
PhysioFunction clients experienced positive outcomes when undertaking a trial with Hannah Rushton, Nutrition and Lifestyle Coach.
Natasha’s Case Study
“I was interested in trialling this programme for my digestive health and mental health and lastly mobility. My personal goals were to achieve better digestion and feel less lethargic with the aid of loss of weight and mobility.”
Natasha was 46 years old when she underwent surgery to remove a grade II spinal cord tumour in 2017. In Natasha’s words, “Since then, my blood pressure has gone up and my digestion plays havoc with me”.
Natasha was put in touch with Food For Thought Nutrition Coaching in Autumn 2020 by PhysioFunction, who she sees weekly to help with her goal of rehabilitation to walking without aids.
During our first session together, Natasha explained to me that since her surgery, her weight has gradually increased, putting pressure on her joints which impacts on her walking, and also affecting her confidence and self-esteem.
Natasha also described how her energy levels fluctuate throughout the day with a mid-afternoon slump often resulting in cravings for chocolate and sugary snacks. Natasha identified her lack of exercise as impacting on her energy levels and she wished to explore ways to increase her physical activity in addition to her physiotherapy treatment programme.
Natasha also wanted to improve her digestive health, which she managed with over-the-counter treatment at the time of our initial consultation, and which affected her wellbeing and appetite (“if my bowels are playing up I don’t tend to eat”).
Finally, Natasha identified a goal to improve her mental health, following a number of “extremely stressful” situations during the past 3 years. Natasha told me that she finds it hard to relax and wanted to explore stress management strategies such as meditation, which she has tried in the past and felt the benefits.
Natasha completed 4 sessions of coaching over Zoom, spaced at 2-weekly intervals, where together we created a nutrition and lifestyle plan to help her make small but powerful changes to her diet and lifestyle to support her in making progress towards her goals. These included healthy diet upgrades to improve the quality and balance of her diet, and to support her digestive health. Natasha also committed to a daily meditation practice and completing 10 minutes of household chores to increase her physical activity levels.
After just 4 sessions of NLC, Natasha reports the following:
“My digestion has improved so much with making small changes, it has really helped me identify which foods can trigger off a bad episode. I must say I did slip up at Christmas. I’m now getting back into it, however it is amazing how quickly your body responds to the rubbish put into your body and not in a good way. Mobility wise, [NLC] has helped immensely with my stamina. Household chores definitely helped in my mobility and standing for longer periods of time. The main challenge now is when I start cleaning I get so engrossed I forget lunch! Meditation has helped greatly in giving me peace during the day, once my 21 day trial is completed I’m signing up with Headspace”.
Natasha was also positive about her experience of using Zoom saying, “I did at first have apprehension of using Zoom as it’s something I had not done before, after the first session it felt comfortable. To be honest if you have mobility issues this way of working is so much better.”
When asked to comment on her overall experience of Nutrition and Lifestyle Coaching, Natasha said, “Would like to say a big thank you for opening my eyes and helping with my digestion and overall healthy experience.”
Neil’s Case Study
Neil was 30 years old when he suffered a stroke in June 2006 caused by a bleed in the brain, which initially left him with locked in syndrome. Fast forward to 2020 and Neil has made remarkable progress in his recovery, but in his own words, “[I] have been left physically disabled. People find it difficult to sometimes understand me when I speak. I fully understand everything which is going on around me.”
Neil was put in touch with Food For Thought Nutrition Coaching by PhysioFunction, who he sees regularly in-clinic and via telerehab to work on his mobility goals. Neil was keen to explore the benefits of nutrition and lifestyle coaching to “Lose and achieve a healthy weight whilst dealing with my disability. To feel more positive and have strategies to support stress management. To achieve more settled sleep.”
After meeting with Neil over Zoom to discuss his current diet and find out more about his sleep, physical activity levels and stress, along with completing an in-depth nutrition analysis, it was clear that Neil was already making some good progress towards his goals. However, a few simple adjustments would improve the overall quality and balance of his diet, ensuring he was eating enough to meet his daily nutrient requirements whilst still making progress towards his weight loss goal. Together we agreed a programme of action steps that would help Neil to achieve these outcomes with Neil jokingly saying to me, “I seem to be eating more when I should be cutting down!”
Neil and I also explored some wellbeing strategies to help support stress management; these included daily breathing exercises and taking time to reflect on things that had gone well. This latter action step prompted Neil to write a letter to PhysioFunction, thanking them for helping him through a tough year in which he writes, “Then Rhiannon put me forward to work with Hannah on health and well-being, where with a few dietary tweaks I have managed to lose some weight and part of the coaching made me think about writing this letter, reflecting on the best bits of a bad tough year we all have struggled though. I hope to keep the hard work going next year.”
After just 4 sessions of NLC, Neil’s results speak for themselves: he achieved a weight loss of 2.5kg and his BMI decreased from 27.3 to 26.5. As Neil puts it, “how would know by eat better and more you would lose weight”. Neil also reported an improvement in his blood pressure with a reading of 128/72 which he describes as “very good for me”, and whilst this was not a result that we set out to achieve, it was a welcome outcome nonetheless and demonstrates how making dietary and lifestyle changes can result in further, positive health improvements beyond the original goal.
When asked to comment on his overall experience of Nutrition and Lifestyle Coaching and what worked particularly well for him, Neil said, “It all helped”.