My journey from GP to lifestyle medic.
Nutrition & Weight Management
I graduated from Barts Medical School in 1995 and qualified as a GP in 2001, and my near obsession with food led me to return to the University of Surrey at a later date to study a postgraduate degree in nutrition., qualifying me as a nutritionist registered with and regulated by the Association for Nutrition (ANutr). Having met a number of likeminded colleagues, in 2016 I co-founded the British Society of Lifestyle Medicine
My nutrition studies prompted me to reassess my own diet, and I now eat a vegan plant based diet and am on the advisory board of Plant Based Health Professionals UK When consulting with people about their own diets, I promote a diet based on unprocessed vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and legumes as far as possible; ‘based on’ does not necessarily mean ‘entirely’, so if the people I work with wish to continue to eat meat, fish, dairy and eggs then I am happy to give nutrition advice helping people to eat the most healthful diet they can while incorporating these foods. Of course, a lifestyle that will give you the opportunity to have radiant health is about more than diet. As a lifestyle doctor I also have a keen interest in physical activity, sleep, stress management and many other aspects of the lifestyle choices we all make every day.
I also have a special interest in weight management. I am SCOPE certified (the only internationally recognised qualification in obesity management) and work with the Association for the Study of Obesity and the University of South Wales tutoring on their weight management course. When discussing weight with people, I use motivational interviewing to help people to solve their own weight management problems. Most of us know what we ‘should’ do but for many reasons it’s a serious challenge to stick to it! My aim is to help people break old habits and create new ones that will take them closer to their weight based goals. I am not naturally slim myself, I have to work hard to maintain my own weight, and I know that the challenge is real!
I work as an NHS GP in the Welsh Valleys and have a growing private lifestyle medicine/weight management practice. When I’m not busy doing that, my other roles include: