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The Role of Nutrients in the Skin Health

It’s amazing what a few months of a nutrient-dense diet can do for the appearance and health of your skin. While conventional medical professionals often discount the connection between skin health and nutrition, there is strong evidence to support the influence of our food choices on the health and vibrancy of our skin.

I am passionate about helping clients to support many skin conditions and complaints, using individualised nutritional and lifestyle strategies.

I assess every patient’s individual skin needs from the inside-out, to create completely customised nutritional programs accordingly rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach. Every person’s skin has its own physiological characteristics and undergoes stresses linked to diet, lifestyle and underlying health conditions.


Sometimes it is necessary to further investigate the underlying cause of skin issues through scientific pathology blood, stool or urine tests. I work in partnership with several premier UK laboratories, with a huge array of laboratory tests available.

Good nutrition gained from a healthy, balanced diet is not just essential for a well-functioning body; it also vastly contributes to healthy, glowing and balanced skin, too.

Therefore, healthy skin starts from within and it is possible to make dramatic improvements to your skin by making sure your daily diet contains the optimum amount of vitamins and minerals. I can help identify if your body is deficient in key vitamins or minerals, or sensitive to any foods, and create changes in your diet to compensate for this. 

Examples of how nutritional deficiencies can affect the skin

  • Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) - Omega-3 fatty acids are known to be anti-inflammatory, and the relative intake of omega-6 to omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) may be a crucial dietary factor in the regulation of systemic inflammation. Our modern diets tend to be very unbalanced in essential fatty acid intake; the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in Western diets is commonly at least 10 to 1, compared with ratios of 4 to 1 in Japan and 2 to 1 in hunter-gatherer populations. (1) This high ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in our modern diet likely plays a role in the prevalence of inflammatory skin conditions such as acne, psoriasis, and rosacea.
  • Biotin - A deficiency of biotin causes hair loss and a characteristic scaly, erythematous (red and inflamed) dermatitis around the mouth and other areas of the face and scalp. (6) In infants, biotin deficiency manifests as “cradle cap”, or scaly dermatitis of the scalp. This condition appears as crusty yellow or white patches on the scalp, behind the ears, and around the face. In adults, this condition is called seborrheic dermatitis and can occur in many different areas of the skin. Biotin deficiency can also be a cause of dandruff for some people.
  • Niacin - Pellagra, the disease of late stage niacin deficiency, causes a variety of skin symptoms such as dermatitis and a dark, scaly rash. While a low intake of niacin is unlikely, there are some diseases that may cause inadequate niacin absorption from the diet. An example of this is in celiac disease, where absorption is impaired by the swelling and thickening of the intestinal lining that occurs in celiac disease. Other inflammatory gut conditions such as IBS or Crohn’s disease can also lead to a reduction in niacin absorption, and could conceivably lead to the skin-related symptoms of pellagra such as dermatitis and scaling.
  • Vitamin A - Vitamin A influences the physiology of the skin by promoting epidermal differentiation, modulating dermal growth factors, inhibiting sebaceous gland activity, and suppressing androgen formation. Lack of vitamin A causes the skin to become keratinized and scaly, and mucus secretion is suppressed. Rough, dry skin is a common sign of vitamin A deficiency, which often first appears as rough, raised bumps on the back of the arms.
  • Vitamin C - Vitamin C has been known for decades to play a crucial role in the regulation of the structural protein collagen, which is necessary for the extracellular stability of the skin. A vitamin C deficiency causes scurvy, which is first manifested as rough, dry skin and corkscrew hair growth. Inadequate vitamin C is also known to contribute to the development of the common problem of hyperkeratosis pillaris, as the follicles become damaged when collagen formation is impaired.

Examples of how nutrition can aid the skin

  • Selenium - One of the most important functions of selenium is as a component of glutathione peroxidase, an enzyme necessary for the antioxidant function of glutathione. Glutathione is one of the major antioxidants in the body that protects against cellular damage from the free radicals that cause inflammation, aging, and can promote skin cancer. Many scientists support the theory that selenium in the diet is protective against skin cancer.
  • Sulphur is necessary for collagen synthesis, which gives the skin its structure and strength. The breakdown of collagen or insufficient production of collagen as we age is one of the major contributors to the development of wrinkles, and dietary sulphur significantly affects the production of collagen in our skin. Animals fed a sulphur deficient diet produce less collagen than normal, demonstrating how a diet with inadequate sulphur can contribute to a reduction in collagen and subsequently cause an increase in skin wrinkling. Getting enough sulphur in your diet can help maintain collagen production and keep your skin looking firm.
  • Zinc - In skin, zinc assists in the proper structure of proteins and cell membranes, improves wound healing, has anti-inflammatory effects, and protects against UV radiation. Several studies indicate that dietary zinc may reduce acne, even as effectively as antibiotics such as tetracyclines. (8) This may be because it interacts with vitamin A as a component of retinol-binding protein, which is necessary for transporting vitamin A in the blood.
  • Probiotics - The ability of the gut microbiota and oral probiotics to influence systemic inflammation, oxidative stress, glycaemic control, and tissue lipid content, may have important implications in skin conditions such as acne, rosacea, atopic dermatitis, and psoriasis. Recent studies have shown that orally consumed pre and probiotics can reduce systemic markers of inflammation and oxidative stress, which may help reduce inflammatory acne and other skin conditions.
  • Vitamin K2 - Adequate dietary vitamin K2 prevents calcification of our skin’s elastin, the protein that gives skin the ability to spring back, smoothing out lines and wrinkles. This is because K2 is necessary for activation of matrix proteins that inhibit calcium from being deposited in elastin fibers and keeping these fibers from hardening and causing wrinkles. In fact, recent research suggests that people who cannot metabolize vitamin K end up with severe premature skin wrinkling.
  • Vitamin E - Vitamin E is a potent anti-inflammatory agent, defending the skin against free radicals and reactive oxygen species. Vitamin E may also play a synergistic role with selenium in improving glutathione levels in the body, further increasing antioxidant activity. Adequate levels of this vitamin in the skin may prevent inflammatory damage from sun exposure, helping to reduce the aging and skin cancer risk from excessive UV radiation.
  • Silica - silica has been shown to contribute to certain enzyme activities that are necessary for normal collagen formation. Silica is essential for maintaining the health of connective tissues due to its interaction with the formation of glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), which are structural building blocks of these types of tissue. One well-known GAG important for skin health is hyaluronic acid, which has been shown to promote skin cell proliferation and increase the presence of retinoic acid, improving the skin’s hydration. Proper collagen formation is essential for maintaining tight, wrinkle-free skin, so silica can also be beneficial for slowing down the signs of skin aging. 

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DNA Analysis

We all have the same genes  - around 20,000 - the only difference between people is different versions of the same gene.

Diet and our DNA interact.

Nutrition has the most important life-long environmental impact on human health.

While nutrigenetics addresses how an individual’s genetic make-up metabolises nutrients and predisposes us to developing diet-related disease, nutrigenomics explains how nutrition can influence the expression of our genes. You can be in control of your genes, rather than your genes being in control of you...

 


The interaction between Genetics and Nutrition is the most important factor to consider for personalised nutritional programme tailor-made for each individual.

 

OUR GENES ARE NOT OUR FATE

We are entering a new era of personalised medicine.  One size does not fit all. 

New studies show that comprehensive nutritional and lifestyle changes may alter gene expression in hundreds of genes in only a few months — "turning on" (up regulating) anti-ageing and disease-preventing genes and "turning off" (downregulating) genes that promote disease, inflammation, ageing and oxidative stress. These nutritional and lifestyle changes also increase telomerase, the enzyme that repairs and lengthens telomeres, the ends of our chromosomes that control how long we live!

 

But, we are all different from one another, not all types of food or certain diet can grant each one of us the same benefits. 

Unlocking the secrets contained within your genetic data, analysing it, incorporating the latest scientific research and advances in nutrigenetics and nutrigenomics can reveal how each individual metabolises macro- and micro-nutrients, determine essential nutrient requirements for anti-ageing effect, identify the type of diet that is ideal to keep you slim and healthy in accordance to your genetic make-up.

Genetic testing is designed to help you optimise your health via your diet, lifestyle and supplements, allowing you to live in a way that respects your individual biology. Your genetic data will be used to create Your Tailored Nutritional Programme that will show you exactly what type of diet is perfect for you, what dietary components are important, which supplements are necessary and what measures you should incorporate into your daily life. The DNA-based Programme gives you the power to be in control of your genes. 

Prices

WeightGen - £400

SkinGen - £400

DetoxGen - £499

Well-Being (the most comprehensive test) - £2,900

The price includes: Your DNA test, your personalised DNA-based programme including diet, supplements, lifestyle recommendations;

1 consultation with our nutritionist at 10 Harley Street or via Skype.

 

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Weight Loss

I use various proven weight loss techniques and programmes that are individually tailored to a client and their unique lifestyle, preferences and goals. I have had long-term success rates with various types of intermittent fasting, ketogenic diets, Paleo style diets, low carbohydrate programmes and high protein diets for targeted long-term weight loss and maintenance.

METABOLIC BALANCE®

Metabolic Balance® is a revolution in weight-loss, using cutting edge science to deliver a unique and tailored nutritional programme.

Metabolic Balance® achieves weight-loss by resetting the body’s metabolism and improving the health of the body. Replacing the fad diet and the one size fits all approach, Metabolic Balance® delivers a nutritional programme that is unique for your body. No plan is the same!

Metabolic Balance® has received international acclaim for its weight loss potential, however the programme can also be used for weight gain, weight maintenance, and in the management of such conditions as high cholesterol, Type 2 Diabetes, high blood pressure and skin conditions. A 2010 study published in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism showed the effectiveness of the Metabolic Balance® programme in improving weight, blood lipids and quality of life. You can read the study here. http://www.hindawi.com/journals/jnme/2010/197656/

Each programme produced is individualised based on blood test results and your health information. During the 3 month programme, your Metabolic Balance® certified coach will be on hand to prepare you for what to expect at each stage, and to provide you with support and encouragement along the way.

The tailored 4-phase programme is completely healthy, balanced and no food groups are eliminated. Better still you don’t need to use any supplements, you can get everything you need from your supermarket. The plan is based on consuming 3 meals a day and changes the way you think about food forever.

Metabolic Balance® Standard package costs £895 and includes all of the following:

  • Preliminary assessment of whether Metabolic Balance® is right for you (initial cost of £30, offset against the cost of the programme should you proceed with it). If you do decide to go ahead, your coach will talk you through the preparatory stages, discuss your personal goals, and help you arrange your blood test.
  • Comprehensive blood test (normally valued at £265).
  • Metabolic Balance® kick-off consultation, where your coach will guide you through your individualised plan which has been put together based on your blood analysis. Any questions are answered and you leave fully prepared for the start of your journey, knowing your coach will be fully supportive throughout the entire process.
  • First follow-up consultation with your coach, 1 week into the programme.
  • 3 further consultations (which may be a mixture of face-to-face, telephone and Skype) throughout the 3-month programme.
  • Regular contact from your coach to see how you are doing.

Disclaimer: The Metabolic Balance® programme does not replace your requirement for your usual consultations with your medical practitioner, in particular in relation to permanent symptoms requiring medical supervision. Please click here if you would like more information on Metabolic Balance®

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