Nutritional Therapy is part of Complementary Medicine and is the study and application of nutrition science to support the promotion and maintenance of good health and optimal performance throughout all life stages.
It is part of preventative medicine that supports disease management and control. The educational training increasingly encourages application of the functional medicine model, which enables investigation of different body functions and how they relate to each other to gain a more complete health picture.
Nutritional Therapy generally includes personal one-to-one consultations and a comprehensive health history taking, dietry analysis of a 3 or 7 day diet diary. If it is considered appropriate, cellular biochemical laboratory testing is used to enhance strategies for optimal wellness, I tend to use Genova Diagnostics. Individual food and nutritional plans are based on that person's unique dietary and nutritional needs. Facilitating practical and positive food and lifestyle choices are at the heart of the recommended treatment protocols. This can also include supplements, based on individual testing and latest evidence-based scientific research.
Patients are asked to fill in a diet diary over a typical period 3 to seven days. They are asked to provide some general information about their diet, for example the sort of bread and milk used, what oil is used for cooking or eaten on salads, amounts of jams, sugar and honey consumed.
Ideally they then fill in with as much detail what is eaten and drunk, in what quantity and at what time. Patients are also encouraged to provide information about symptoms such as headaches, IBS, frame of mind, mood etc. This is known as a symptom diary and can be done in conjunction with the diet diary. On completion, the diary is returned to Mary for analysis and review, which usually takes a week. Sometimes the diary is analysed using a computer programme, Food Base. and then appropriate dietary recommendations are made. The emphasis is to provide guidelines tending towards the healthiest diet possible, whilst addressing the concerns of the patient.
Mary O’Leary graduated from The British College of Osteopathic Medicine (BCOM) in 1998 with a first class Honours degree in Osteopathy and a diploma in Naturopathy. She has since completed her MSc in Nutritional Therapy and has completed the British Medical Acupuncture qualification in the use of dry needling.
Mary worked in the TV industry for 10 years in a variety of jobs before retraining after two children. Mary has worked at the Lechlade Clinic since 1998 and set up the Faringdon Clinic with Marianne Bennison and James Wilson in 2003.
Mary lectured at BCOM between 1998 and 2000 and at Brookes between 2002 and 2014. Mary taught Nurtrition and Osteopathic Technique and supervised students in Clinic. She was previously the Clinical Education Coordinator at Oxford Brookes.
Mary is keen on running, cycling and yoga and teaches yoga at the Faringdon Clinic. Mary is interested in treating holistically looking and at looking how nutrition influences recovery from injury and pain and how important it is to well being. Additional special areas of interest are headaches, migraine, sports injuries and chronic pain from arthritic joints.