Recently I asked practitioners to tell me where the ‘therapeutic reference range’ many of us were taught for nutrients comes from & no one has been able to answer that.🙄 If you’ve heard me refer to my original naturopathic education before you’ll know I generally hold it in high regard. And I’m forever mindful that there are always things that can be made better. What’s been playing on my mind lately is the recognition that I originally learned nutrition from one (exceptional) individual, and then went on to become the lecturer years later at that same and other institutions. Additionally, I am aware of some of my past students also going on to become the next generation of nutrition lecturers at those same places – and often in fact inheriting their lecturer’s notes, slides, overheads [showing my age!!] with the job. Can anyone else see a problem here? What’s brought this into sharp focus lately are many of the questions I’m endeavouring to answer as part of our much-anticipated Nutrient Prescriber’s Program. How much? How often? When? Which form when? & For how long? Which are the key questions we have to answer with every single nutritional prescription.
To not only source the most rigorous scientific answers to these core critical questions but to also develop a framework that we can all use to answer them for ourselves at the point of any future prescription creation, I have had to go to great lengths.
But as I research & write, I also keep asking myself, ‘How would ‘old-me’ have answered this?’
How did I up until now either consciously or unconsciously answer these sufficiently to make such decisions?
So it’s an ongoing little (& sometimes BIG🧠) internal debate that is raging as I write. And when I ask current praccies these questions they reflect back similar ‘old-me answers’, the vast majority of which were handed to us by our lecturers with plenty of top-up ideas from industry. These answers include things like:
How much? Somewhere within the therapeutic dose range?
How often? Depends on lots of things but generally aiming for daily of course!
When? Minerals before food, fat soluble vitamins with or after, magnesium at night etc
Which form when? Now it gets tricky – because there are all these new forms that we weren’t even taught – but maybe ‘active’ – active is always better, right? Or is that natural? The most bioavailable?
& For how long? Ummmmm how long is a piece of string?! Until the signs and symptoms resolve?
Now all of these as general statements are partly correct. And with respect to the level of understanding we need to have when crafting a nutritional prescription for a specific patient, with a specific presentation and for a specific purpose (correction of deficiency Vs supranutritional Vs therapeutic antagonism etc)…well they are plain wrong in the majority of instances. Don’t freak-out in freefall!🪂 The prescribing of nutrients is a wonderful and typically, a wonderfully safe, modality that offers us the potential for extraordinary patient outcomes. When used well. We could all benefit, I believe, from just sharpening our tools so we bring out the very best in our medicines & in ourselves, as prescribers & clinicians. I am neck-deep in writing the 10 modules that can start us all on that journey. Want to join me?
And to be clear, about the educational echo chamber,
In the past I was part of the problem and ever since I have tried to be part of the solution.
The Nutrient Prescriber’s Program kicks off in Feb 2024
⏱Early Bird closes 8th Nov⏱
With over a decade of mentoring practitioners, Rachel has recognised a need for an educational program that provides practitioners with more structure, more science, and therefore more certainty in navigating each individual prescription. This monthly meet-up is delivered in 5 live sessions and runs from February to June (10 modules).
All sessions, encompassing both theoretical and applied learning will run for approximately 2 hrs each.