Personalized nutrition isn’t all that common these days. Everyone seems to want to follow a popular diet program. It’s like being part of the “in-crowd.” Last week, everyone was raw vegan. This week, we’re all on the paleo diet. Next week, it’s the carnivore diet. How do you know what’s right for you?
The answer is a Personalized Nutrition Program.
What is Personalized Nutrition?
Personalized nutrition is a dietary and supplement plan that we customize specifically for you. It’s based on food allergy and other types of testing that let us know what’s causing inflammation in your body and which nutrients will be most helpful for healing. Testing allows us to target specific imbalances and help you restore your health in a plan best suited for you.
As we design a personalized nutrition plan, we’ll consider your current lifestyle and food preferences, plus your health goals. Together, we’ll create a program that fits your life and is sustainable long-term. It’s not that you’ll necessarily have to avoid all your allergens forever. Many of them will come back after your gut has healed and your immune system has returned to balance.
We want to create a diet, nutrition, and lifestyle plan that you can stick to, so you achieve and maintain vibrant health and energy!
How Can Personalized Nutrition Be Beneficial for Your Health?
Following a personalized nutrition program is crucial for restoring your health. The primary way it helps is by lowering your overall inflammation levels. When inflammation is high, it’s like having a house fire out of control. It’s hard to work on health restoration when there’s an emergency in your body. While some foods tend to be inflammatory for everyone, others only cause inflammation in those with a sensitivity.
An example might be ginger. While ginger is a great anti-inflammatory spice in general, it won’t work that way if you’ve developed an allergy to it. In that case, it will cause inflammation rather than lower it. You might be taking ginger three times a day, thinking that you’re reducing the inflammation in your body, yet you still suffer from migraines or other pain. Food allergy testing helps us find out whether the ginger is causing the pain rather than relieving it.
The Factors to Consider While Making a Personalized Nutrition Plan
There are a few factors to consider when working with a practitioner to make a personalized nutrition plan. They involve both what’s going on in your body and what’s going on in your life in general. One of these is your food allergies.
Your Food Allergies
As you put together a personalized nutrition plan, the main factor to consider is your food allergies. If you continue to eat things that create inflammation in your body, it will be difficult to restore your health. Common food allergies include gluten, dairy, eggs, yeast, soy, corn, and peanuts. These might come up for you, or they might not. Some people even have carrots and apples show up as allergies. Your personalized nutrition plan will eliminate these foods for a while –until your inflammation goes down and your body can heal itself.
It’s a good idea to have a list of your food allergies saved on your phone or kept in your wallet or purse for when you go grocery shopping.
Your Current Health Conditions
Another consideration is your list of current health conditions. You’ll also want to focus on foods that support whatever organ system you’re working on healing, whether the immune system, thyroid, gut, liver, or skin. That’s where personalized nutrition coaching comes in. Your practitioner can help you find foods that support these different organs and systems.
What are your health goals? Allergy-wise, you may tolerate high carbohydrate foods like maple syrup, dates, and sweet potatoes. However, if you’re trying to stabilize your blood sugar or lose weight, these foods might not be helpful.
Your Food Budget
When putting together your personalized nutrition plan, don’t forget about your food budget. Healthy foods don’t have to be expensive; however, it takes shopping wisely and planning. Here are a few tips for maximizing your food budget:
- When shopping for organic foods at the supermarket, know your “Clean Fifteen” vs. “the Dirty Dozen.” – The Environmental Working Group keeps an updated list of the fifteen foods you can get away with buying conventional versus the dozen foods that tend to be highly-pesticide laden.
- Shop Local – Do your best to buy foods directly from local farmers, ranchers, and farmers’ markets. Not only does it help support your local economy, but it’s also often less expensive since you won’t pay shipping costs.
- Buy in Bulk – While shopping local, consider buying half a grass-fed beef cow at a time. You’ll get a much better rate per pound and have the opportunity to snag the organ meats. You can also shop at warehouse food clubs for organic foods in bulk and at a discount.
- Focus on Foods in Season – For example, zucchini in the summer is less expensive than zucchini in the winter. You can also “pick your own” in the summertime and autumn. Local berry patches and apple orchards will give you a better rate per pound when you do the harvesting.
Which Foods You Enjoy
To stick with a personalized nutrition plan, include plenty of foods you enjoy. So, look at your food allergy list, goal list, and food budget, and brainstorm some favorites that you can still include regularly. Maybe even schedule some favorite meals on a Friday or Saturday night so that you have something to look forward to all week long. Spend some time on our recipes page, where you’ll find delicious, healthy recipes, including:
- Chocolate Donuts
- No Egg Omelet
- Happy Hormone Chunky Monkey Smoothie
- Sweet Potato Chili
- Homemade Macaroni & Cheese
- Baked Sweet Potato Fries
- Healthy Chicken Fajitas
- Sloppy Joes
…and more! You can enjoy your favorite foods remade –The Wellness Way.
As you look at your food allergies, health challenges, budget, and preferences, you’ll also want to consider your schedule. What kind of time do you have for shopping and cooking? If you feel strapped for time already, there are a few things you can do to take the pressure off:
- Buy in bulk and stock your pantry – Making multiple grocery runs per week adds up in time.
- Batch-cook on the weekends – You can make soup, meatballs, muffins, chili, and even smoothie bags for the freezer.
- Embrace frozen vegetables – They come already chopped, and you can easily steam them for a quick side dish.
- Freeze roasted vegetables – You can reheat them and serve them as a side dish or on top of a salad.
- Make pancakes or waffles ahead – We have a few great options on our recipe page. Freeze them with some baking paper between them. Then reheat in the toaster as needed.
Challenging Yourself to Try New Foods
Following a personalized nutrition plan can be a fun adventure! Take the opportunity to try new foods and recipes. You might discover some favorite foods. Have you tried foods like chia seeds, yacon syrup, or coconut aminos? If not, you’re in for a treat. Here are some other healthy ingredients you’ll find in some of our recipes, many of which have extra-special side benefits:
- Maca root powder
- Grains of paradise
- Arrowroot starch
- Birch tree xylitol
- Macadamia milk
- Tamari sauce
- Bone broth powder
- Raw cacao nibs
- Coconut sugar
- Duck eggs
- Monk fruit sweetener
- Buckwheat flour
These foods can help substitute for allergenic foods on your list (such as cow’s milk, chicken eggs, and wheat). While you might have to remove some foods temporarily, there are plenty of other delicious ones to add.
The Wellness Way Can Help!
So, how can The Wellness Way help you get started personalized nutrition program? We don’t guess; we test! To help you with your personalized nutrition program, we need to test which foods give you an elevated immune response. For that reason, we first test food allergies. Once we have the list of foods that cause inflammation for you and which ones don’t, we can help you find nutritious meals that are right for you. Getting onto a personalized nutrition program is key to health restoration. Visit a Wellness Way Clinic near you to get started!