As you know, I have been working my way through so many books on health and nutrition over the past few months, and one of my favourites has been The Forensic Nutritionist by Fiona Tuck. Fiona – as well as being absolutely stunning – is a Nutritional Medicine Practitioner, skincare expert, yoga teacher and an accredited member of the Australian Traditional Medicine Society, therefore has more than enough knowledge and experience to pen a book on nutrition.
I recently had the lovely opportunity to ask Fiona some burning questions I had about health & wellness which I’ve popped below, and please do take a peek at ‘The Forensic Nutritionist’, which is available online now but will also be released in health stores September 1st, if you too want to get the real deal on healthy eating – and see some yummy and very aesthetically-pleasing recipes to boot!
Fiona, your book is such a great read and I’ve learnt so much about nutrition that I never even knew! I must admit, a lot of my desire to eat ‘right’ is to enhance my skin’s glow and gut balance but food really is a medicine isn’t it, as the old saying goes ‘let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food’. I am so glad to hear that you are enjoying the book. Everything we put into our mouth has an ability to harm or heal, this really changes the way we think about food. Knowing how to read food labels when in the supermarket is a great way to begin to eat smarter, is there anything in particular to look out for Fiona?
Where possible, try to stick to the outer perimeter of the supermarket when shopping as this is where all the fresh foods tend to be. The fresher the food, the less ingredients on the label. The more natural, e.g. fresh fruit and vegetables, there are no labels at all. If there is a long list of chemical sounding ingredients or numbers, my advice is put it back on the shelf.
Should we all be taking vitamin supplements or pre/probiotics, or are they only for specific concerns?
It really is different for each individual. Try and get your nutrients from a diet rich in fresh foods particularly fresh fruits and vegetables. Supplements may be required when there is illness, if a person is on medication or there is need for nutritional support. To get the very best from a supplement, it is advisable to seek professional assistance to be sure you are taking the right supplement and at the correct dose for your particular requirements.
I keep reading that salt is the enemy for the heart, but a nutritionist once told me many women are salt deficient and should be consuming more! Where do you sit on this subject?
Unfortunately, there is no one size fits all it depends on diet, lifestyle, size and health. Most people get enough salt through their diet and it is rare to be deficient, however what we tend to need more of is iodine which is found in iodised salt. Whilst regular table salt is not beneficial for blood pressure, kidney and cardiovascular disease, it is important to include mineral rich foods in the diet such as seaweed and kelp to obtain adequate minerals particularly iodine.
If the goal is weight loss and increased energy, what steps should begin to take for a serious lifestyle change?
Cut right back on refined, processed foods which tend to be high in fat, salt and sugar and low in nutrients. Eating high calorie low nutrient foods leads us to crave more food as our body is in need of nourishment. This can lead to overeating and weight gain.
Include a variety of different vegetables with each meal and aim for 7 – 10 servings a day, which includes a couple of pieces of fruit. Exercise every day even if it is only for 20 – 30 minutes. This with increase the feel good chemicals boosting mood and self esteem which will make it easier for you to stay on track with a healthy eating regime. It’s the small daily changes that make the biggest long term effects on weight and energy.
And because it’s all about the skin for me, what kinds of food should I be consuming for that all-illusive glow? Should I really be drinking a glass of warm water and lemon each morning?
Warm water and lemon can aid digestion but just be mindful that lemon juice is acidic and can attack the enamel on your teeth. When it comes to clear skin it is all about fibre, antioxidants and good fats. We need the fibre to flush out toxins and old hormones, the antioxidants (fruit and veg) to protect against premature ageing and pigmentation and the good fats such as oily fish, nuts and seeds to keep the skin supple, soft and hydrated. Water is important for firmness and hydration and of course helps the fibre along nicely too!
Here’s to living a healthier lifestyle,