More Vitamins Wrong Answers to Health
Fifty per cent of Australians pop a vitamin pill each day, but most don't know if they need them, and some people could be doing themselves more harm than good, according to the Australasian College of Natural Therapies (ACNT).
Studies show just ten per cent of Australians get their recommended dietary intake of fruit and vegetables a day*. Many people eat unbalanced meals, follow weight-loss diets, skip meals and eat foods high in sugar and fat – all of which can cause imbalances.
National Academic Director of ACNT Teresa Mitchell-Paterson says many people tend to view vitamin pills as an insurance policy against poor eating habits and future health problems.
"However, blind consumption of supplements without understanding the body's real nutritional needs can lead to nutritional imbalances," says Mitchell-Paterson.
"Of all the major factors which affect our health, we have the greatest control over what we eat and drink, but very few people adhere to the dietary guidelines. And most people are unaware of what vitamins they consume in sufficient quantities, and what vitamins they don't.
"Although some vitamins and minerals when taken in excess will pass through the body, some do stay in the system and may contribute to undesirable complications," she says.
Teresa Mitchell-Paterson says self-diagnosis is rampant among those who aren't really seriously ill, but who just don't feel 100 per cent.
"Many decide on impulse that they need a health boost and buy a bottle of vitamins when they see them on special, with only a vague idea of the contents or whether they really need them.
"Instead, Australians should consult a naturopath or health practitioner to make sense of their nutritional needs," says Mitchell-Paterson.
ACNT graduate, Annie van de Linde, has a passion for the latest industry developments and works with dietary supplement giant Metagenics in a dynamic role that allows her to share scientific breakthroughs with natural therapy practitioners.
After completing an Advanced Diploma of Naturopathy, and a stint in a health food store, she now helps to run seminars that bring practitioners up to speed with industry-leading advances.
"This industry has many of the most promising answers to the health problems our society is facing in the 21st century," says van de Linde.
"Alternative therapies can help heal many of the chronic diseases we see occurring in epidemic proportions, such as asthma, chronic fatigue and eczema.
"As people seek a more holistic approach to health and wellbeing, the natural therapies industry is growing fast and gaining widespread acceptance.
"It's exciting to know we have the ability to help people to have a much better quality of life. It's a passion I hope to take into my own practice one day," concludes van de Linde.
ACNT's courses (including Natural Medicine, Manual Therapies, and Fitness) have been developed in consultation with leading academics and industry bodies, and are designed to provide cutting edge theoretical knowledge combined with practical application and training.
Applications for 2011 study are now open for on-campus study at the Sydney and Brisbane campuses or via Distance Education. Courses include:
Advanced Diploma of Naturopathy
Advanced Diploma of Western Herbal Medicine (Sydney only)
Advanced Diplomas of Nutritional Medicine
Advanced Diploma of Homoeopathy (Sydney only)
Certificate IV in Massage Therapy Practice
Diploma of Remedial Massage
Certificate IV in Aromatherapy
Diploma of Aromatherapy
Sports & Fitness
Certificate III in Fitness
Certificate IV in Fitness
Diploma of Fitness
All Australian students applying for Diplomas and Advanced Diplomas can apply for VET FEE-HELP. For more information please call the ACNT on 1300 017 267 or visit www.acnt.edu.au
*Sanitarium Health & Wellbeing Company commissioned a Newspoll survey, Sept 10.