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Have you ever wondered why some people get better on one diet while others see no change, and another gets worse? It has everything to do with their bio individuality. There simply is no diet for all.

“The ultimate effect of a food or nutrient on the body is not dependant on intrinsic value of the food or nutrient itself…. the variable is the person. The various metabolic and genetic nutritional requirements of different people help characterise their Metabolic Type” – William L. Wolcott.

Let’s start by looking at how our body creates ENERGY! Fuel -> Oxidation -> Energy = Metabolism.

All metabolic activity takes place at a cellular level. Each cell in your body is like a biochemical factory. Its primary task is to oxidise (burn or combust) food and nutrients to provide energy for all the life supporting metabolic activities your body carries out. The quality of your health is largely dependant on the rate, quality and quantity of energy produced to carry out your metabolic processes such as respiration, circulation, tissue repair, growth, reproduction, digestion, detoxification etc. To optimise ENERGY production the body requires a full spectrum of both macronutrients (protein, fats, carbohydrates) and micronutrients (vitamins, minerals, trace elements). That fuel along with oxygen is used in the cell to produce energy also known as ATP (Adenosine Triphosphate).

MD Frank Netter (Atlas of Human Anatomy) explains that every cell, tissue, organ, and system could have the same type of biochemical and physiological variations as our external characteristics such as our face, nose, eyes etc. Our insides are just as anatomically different.

Unbalanced or inadequate nutrition at the cellular level is a major cause of human disease. Inherited differences extend to the structure and metabolism of every cell and determine the speed and efficiency with which cells perform their essential functions. People have genetically determined and highly individualised nutrition requirements.

Every cell in your body is connected to your nervous system. Your Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) is the master regulator of your metabolism, or the so-called master distributor of the energy produced for nervous system balance between your sympathetic and parasympathetic systems. Your Autonomic Nervous System is one of the homeostatic controls your body uses to keep you in balance. The carbo-oxidative and lipo-oxidative systems control the way in which your cells convert nutrients into energy. Your endocrine system has several influences on your metabolism through the secretion of hormones, the chemical messengers that manage the activity of tissues and cells. These key homeostatic systems determine your metabolic type.

Every person has a dominance within the Autonomic Nervous System meaning you are either in a parasympathetic or sympathetic dominant state. You also either are a fast, slow or mixed oxidiser determining the ratio in which your body prefers its fuel. Fast oxidisers require slow burning fuel consisting of a higher percentage of protein and fat. Slow oxidisers require fast burning fuel meaning a higher percentage of carbohydrates. Food is directly responsible for keeping you in balance. These inherited tendencies further define one’s metabolic type. 

Some characteristics of someone who is in sympathetic dominance (fight/flight) are

  • excellent concentration, highly motivated, cool emotionally, irritable, hyperactive, socially withdrawn etc. Some physical tendencies are indigestion, heartburn, high blood pressure, insomnia, low appetite, hypertension, anxiety (worry/fear), headaches, overactive immune system, overactive thyroid etc.

Some characteristics of someone who is in parasympathetic dominance (rest/digest) are

  • procrastination, slow to anger, warm emotionally, socially outgoing, etc. Some physical tendencies are lethargy, chronic fatigue, low blood pressure, allergies, excessive appetite, depression (hopeless/tearful), low immune response, low thyroid function etc.

These are all tendencies, not rules.

Our goal is Autonomic Balance by providing our genetically pre-programmed cells with the fuel mixture that they require to regulate metabolism in a balanced way. Our cells sustain life, they control whether some food and nutrients stimulate, strengthen, and support the sympathetic system while weakening or inhibiting the parasympathetic side or the other way around depending on your dominance. The power of a metabolically correct diet is that it helps balance body chemistry by strengthening the weaker side of the Autonomic Nervous System.

If someone is in Parasympathetic Dominance, we would want to support and stimulate the sympathetic branch while still supporting the stronger side.

I personally believe that any practitioner who is preaching one specific diet for all such as keto, carnivore, vegan, low fat, FODMAP, intermittent fasting etc. has an impacted ability to offer bio individual nutritional support.  It would always lead to some degree of bias in favour of their preferred diet approach which doesn’t include your own genetic metabolic individuality.

Balance and resiliency are the definition of health. Balance and resiliency are only achieved if the approach is based on the person, not on the practitioner’s personal protocol and beliefs.

I can personally say that eating according to my metabolic type has resulted in my energy levels skyrocketing. I went from a fatigued mother at 3 months postpartum to having energy I didn’t think was possible on as little sleep as I got some days. By providing my body with the correct fuel mixture it was able to sustain adequate energy despite the high output. I also displayed all the typical characteristics of someone in a sympathetic dominant state which means I was able to support my body accordingly with mineral supplementation. The Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis is a great start to understanding one’s metabolic type, mineral and toxin profile.

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