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What’s missing from most nutrition education

BY: Andrea Nakayama

DATE: 2019-02-12

During a recent Live Q&A with a group of new Full Body Systems students, I was asked a great question that really got me thinking.

The question was: Where’s the nutrition in Full Body Systems?

At first I was baffled by the question, because from my lens, the entire program is about nutrition! When we look at the journey of our food through our (full) body systems and how the food interacts with our biological being, it’s nutrition. But then I realized that most people have only a partial understanding of what nutrition really is.

It’s my mission to empower practitioners like you by revealing the truth about nutrition, and this question is a perfect place to start!

Yes, nutrition is about using food as medicine to guide people out of suffering.

Yes, nutrition is about suggesting certain foods and supplements to your clients (and removing others) so that they can overcome deficiencies and find resolution to their issues.

And yet, if that’s all you’re doing, I’m afraid you’re missing the most important piece—physiology.

Yes, physiology. Not labs, not IV nutrient drips, not superfood supplements or the hottest new dietary theory. Physiology.

What is Physiology?

Physiology is a subset of biology. It looks at the normal actions and functions of the body’s anatomy, organs, tissues and cells and how they all interact with one another.

Why is physiology so important when considering dietary recommendations?

Because when we use physiology to understand how the body should work, we are better able to target our comprehension of an individual’s needs for specific nutrition, movement, and repair.

Did you catch that?

It’s less about matching a symptom or diagnosis to a remedy or protocol. It’s more about understanding the difference between what should be happening in your client’s body (ie. how it’s supposed to be functioning) and what’s actually happening in her body.

When you can clearly see that gap—both where the symptoms are manifesting and the upstream underlying root causes of those symptoms—then you’re truly able to use food as medicine. And your physiological understanding provides your biggest set of clues.

A Functional Foundation

Without the foundation of physiology, we run the risk of simply suppressing symptoms and missing our opportunity to help our clients get to the heart of what’s causing their suffering. Unfortunately, we also bypass the most obvious form of scientific evidence.

And that’s just not Functional, in any sense of the word!

This is why we focus on physiology in Functional Nutrition Lab’s Full Body Systems.

Your takeaway? Remember to slow down, resist the temptation to race for a cure, and take a good look at what’s going on in the body of the person you want to help.

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Andrea Nakayama

By: Andrea Nakayama, FxNA Founder & Functional Medicine Nutritionist

Functional Nutrition Alliance provides the comprehensive online Functional Nutrition training in the Science & Art of the Functional Nutrition practice. Learn to address the roots of your clients’ suffering with client education, diet & lifestyle modifications.


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