Why Personalised Nutrition
Because YOU are at the centre of personalised care for improved wellbeing
Poor diet and lack of physical activity (PA) are major risk factors for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) including type 2 diabetes (T2D), cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) and many cancers. Up to 80% of major CVDs, and over one-third of cancers, could be prevented by eliminating shared risk factors, including tobacco use, unhealthy diet, physical inactivity and excess alcohol consumption. This emphasizes the importance of changing lifestyle in public health initiatives. Despite the known link between dietary patterns and disease, interventions to alter dietary habits and to improve public health and wellbeing have had limited impact. Personalisation of interventions can be more effective in changing behaviour that will affect health outcomes.
Personalised nutrition and individually tailored nutrition mean similar things and go a step further by attempting to deliver nutritional intervention/advice suited to each individual
Nutrigenetics is an aspect of personalised nutrition that studies the different phenotypic responses (ie, weight, blood pressure, plasma cholesterol, or glucose levels) to a specific diet (ie, low fat or Mediterranean diets), depending on the genotype of the individual
• Nutrigenomics involves the characterisation of all gene products affected by nutrients and their metabolic consequences. 2003 UK Department of Health whitepaper forecast that with increased knowledge of genetics, “treatment, lifestyle advice, and monitoring aimed at disease prevention could then be tailored appropriately to suit each individual”. The establishment of pan-national organisations such as the European Nutrigenomics Organisation (NUGO) and the International Society for Nutrigenomics & Nutrigenetics have further served to increase the infrastructure and international collaboration around nutrigenomics research. Given the increasing global burden of nutrition-related noncommunicable diseases , Nutrigenomics could help to develop more sustainable approaches to encouraging dietary change at a population-level.
• Exposome is the collection of environmental factors, such as stress, physical activity and diet, to which an individual is exposed and which may affect health
Epigenomics is a branch of genomics concerned with the epigenetic changes (methylation, histone modification, microRNAs) that modify the expression and function of the genetic material of an organism
• Metabolomics is the scientific study and analysis of the metabolites (usually restricted to small molecules, ie, <900 daltons) produced by a cell, tissue, or organism
• Microbiomics is the study of the microbiome, the totality of microbes in specific environments (ie, the human gut)
The overall goal of personalised nutrition is to preserve or increase health using genetic, phenotypic, medical, nutritional, and other relevant information about individuals to deliver more specific healthy eating guidance and other nutritional products and services.
Personalised nutrition is equally applicable to patients and to healthy people who may or may not have enhanced genetic susceptibilities to specific diseases.
Personalised nutrition can be applied in two broad areas: firstly, for the dietary management of people with specific diseases or who need special nutritional support—for example, in pregnancy or old age, and, secondly, for the development of more effective interventions for improving public health. Individuals may also wish to use personalised nutrition to achieve personal goals/ambitions that are less directly related to health—for example, to deal with preferences for, and dislikes of, specific foods, to attempt to achieve a desired body size or shape, or for competitive sports
What are the conceptual bases for personalised nutrition?
Personalised nutrition is based on the idea that individualising nutritional advice, products, or services will be more effective than more generic approaches.
Personalisation can be based on:
- Biological evidence of differential responses to foods/nutrients dependent on genotypic or phenotypic characteristics
- Analysis of current behaviour, preferences, barriers, and objectives and subsequent delivery of interventions, which motivate and enable each person to make appropriate changes to his or her eating pattern.
- Personalised nutrition uses information on individual characteristics to develop targeted nutritional advice, products, or services to assist people to achieve a lasting dietary change in behaviour that is beneficial for health
- Personalised nutrition is based on the concept that individualised nutritional advice, products, or services will be more effective than more traditional generic approaches
- This personalisation may be based on biological evidence of differential responses to foods/nutrients dependent on genotypic or phenotypic characteristics, and/or based on current behaviour, preferences, barriers and objectives
More about Personalised nutrition and health | The BMJ
MSc Clinical Nutritionist, accredited Nutritionist of UK from Association for Nutrition (AfN) London
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