Preventive nutrition

Specialty of Nutrition & dietetics

What is preventive nutrition?

Preventive nutrition involved adopting eating habits with the aim of preventing or reducing the risk of diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and osteoporosis. These are diseases where there is already substantial evidence that diet plays a role in their development. In the future, preventive nutrition may encompass the prevention or delay of other conditions once a link with diet has been found.

Why would you do it?

Diet plays a significant role in our health and our likelihood of developing certain diseases, but the extent of this role varies.

For example, conditions such as type 2 diabetes can be completely prevented providing a patient maintains a healthy weight and avoids a diet too high in sugar. In contrast, adequate nutrition can help reduce your risk of osteoporosis, but almost all people experience a loss in bone density as they get older, and other factors such as exercise play a large role as well.

On the whole, among the biggest causes of death in the UK – including cancer, heart disease, stroke, and liver disease – a significant number of cases are preventable through good diet .

What kind of conditions can the right diet prevent or delay?

How can I find good diet advice?

You should speak to a qualified dietician for suitable diet advice. A visit to the dietician can be especially useful if you have a food allergy and you are unable to follow standard diet advice about preventing lifestyle-related diseases.

Alternative treatments

Good diet advice is usually accompanied by tips on staying active, as physical exercise is incredibly important for lowering blood sugar levels and keeping your heart healthy. In the case of osteoporosis in particular, the right exercise is important to target the maintenance of bone density later in life.

For patients with a high risk of hypertension, the core treatment is medication to bring down blood pressure levels.

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