What’s holistic nutrition, you ask? An integrative approach to health and wellness, holistic nutrition looks at overall health as a symptom of everything that’s going on with your body – the physical, mental, and emotional. Holistic nutritionists work with people to create an entire healthy lifestyle, not just a diet.
Nutrition is the central factor in how a nutrition counselor treats and educates their patients, but holistic nutrition is also about homeopathic remedies for illness, herbal supplements, and other natural paths to whole-body health. This is different from traditional medicine because it’s not about treating the symptoms, but uncovering and correcting the cause while also preventing future ailments.
What Does a Holistic Nutritionist Do?
While they often work with healthy people interested in optimizing their diet and lifestyle, nutrition counseling is useful for a variety of maladies, including:
- Chronic pain
- Emotional disorders
- Heart disease
- Kidney disease
- Neurodivergent disorders
An holistic nutritionist understands that no one diet and activity plan works for everyone, so they use combined alternative and complementary treatment methods to create a plan tailored to each person’s goals. Somewhere between a health coach and a dietician, holistic nutrition is about educating and advising patients.
You have to earn a certificate from an approved program to be a certified holistic nutritionist. Courses are focused in understanding herbology, how the environment affects health, signs and symptoms of nutrient deficiencies, how nutrition supports all the body’s systems, and how mental health plays into and off of all these things.
What Does a more Holistic Lifestyle Look Like?
A nutritionist is going to be able to help you with a diet and exercise plan, including recommendations for recipe resources, nutritional education, counseling resources, and things like suggestions on local gyms and wellness centers. Food is about nourishment – what you put into your body matters. And that means not just food but thoughts, attitudes, activity, stress, relationships, and more.
Given that, in addition to approaching your diet from a perspective of eating unprocessed, nutrient-dense, feel-good foods, in an holistic lifestyle you should:
- Get regular, restful sleep
- Practice meditation/mindfulness
- Remain conscious of your thought patterns and be grateful
- Be active and stay consistent about it
- Prioritize yourself by managing stress
- Utilize supplements but try to get everything you need from your diet
It’s kind of a lot; but once you’re in the thick of it, it’s kind of not anymore. If you can take control of your health on your own terms, shouldn’t you? Consider seeking out nutrition counseling to explore different perspectives and approaches to health. Starting the right habits now can help you prevent future illness and injury, simply by treating your body well.