A St Martin's resident has started a nutritional therapy clinic on the island.
Claudia Smith, who was raised in Germany but has lived on Scilly for more than six years, formed Healthy People Nutrition after completing a diploma in Naturopathic Nutritional Therapy.
She told This is Scilly: "Initially, I only came to stay for half a year, but I instantly felt at home here with this quieter and more relaxed lifestyle. I met [my husband] Jonathan very early on and as he’s an organic veg grower (at Scilly Organics) we share our interest in food and health - it’s a brilliant combination in that respect. Scilly very much feels like my home now. The last three years here have largely been taken up by studying for my diploma and raising our lovely girl."
Claudia reveals on her website that she has always been passionate about health, but it was her own that prompted her to study nutritional therapy. She wrote: "I suffered from chronic eczema on my hands almost right after birth and for about 26 years. I also developed hay fever as a teenager and then started experiencing sharp hip pain in my early twenties. I remember many feelings of desperation and frustration in all those years: How much worse was my health going to get? Wasn't I eating a relatively good diet? Will I never be truly healthy?
"Move a year or two forward and after a lot more knowledge gained on bodily systems and the impact of nutrition, and I now rarely experience any of these symptoms. It really is incredible: Provide your unique body with the right foods, exercise, sleep, relaxation etc. and your body can actually start to heal itself! Truly remarkable and yet very natural, and something I want to share with you."
Claudia said she is optimistic about starting a new venture on the small island of St Martin's, explaining that she will also be offering online consultations.
She said: "The complementary therapy sector is quite small here so there isn't much around. Plus I think there’s a growing awareness of the connection between lifestyle choices and one’s own health so I'm optimistic.
"Having said that though, online consultations definitely form a main part of my business, and in fact, my first client consultation is online. I think there is definitely an advantage to seeing somebody face to face (both for client and practitioner) but in many circumstances that is simply not feasible, and really what’s more important than the actual consultation experience is how much the client gets out of it, ie the knowledge and motivation to change his/her health.
"A lot of nutritional therapists also end up specialising in a particular field, for example gut health, skin problems or female health to name a few, and these practitioners often get many online clients as a result. So it’s already being done by many!"
She added: "There are also lots of opportunities to take my business into different directions, such as teaming up with Jonathan to run courses on nutrition and veg/fruit growing. As for many people here, life on Scilly requires creativity!"
The new business benefitted from funding from the Isles of Scilly Voucher Scheme.
Find out more at https://www.healthypeoplenutrition.com.