Student Spotlight: Niamh Browne

Welcome to the IINH Student Spotlight series! During this series we will be visiting some of our alumni from both our Nutrition & Health Coaching and Nutritional Therapy courses to see what sparked their interest in nutrition, discuss their nutrition philosophies and find out what they’ve been up to since studying with IINH.

Niamh Browne is a qualified Nutritional Therapist, with a broad ranging career. Her work includes helping her nutritional therapy clients, food consultancy and running her own shop selling natural lifestyle products.

When did you first become interested in nutrition and health?

I first became interested in nutrition due to my own ill health at the age of 17. I  had glandular fever whilst doing my leaving cert and really struggled with post  viral fatigue subsequently. I began reading all the books I could find and tried making dietary and lifestyle changes. 

So what made you decide to study Nutrition and Health Coaching and Nutritional Therapy with IINH?

I wanted to educate myself further in the areas of nutrition and health, both for my own healing journey and to be able to help others. I was quite young- I think IINH’s  youngest student at the time but loved the course and ended up completing the full nutritional therapy diploma. 

 

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A post shared by Niamh Browne (@niamhmbrowne)

You have a really broad ranging career and own your own businesses, tell us a bit about them. 

My work is quite varied at the moment. I see personal nutritional therapy clients – This  all moved online over the past year and I’ve been enjoying working this way and it means that I can work with clients all over Ireland and further afield with ease. I’ve  been working with the Eating Freely program for over a year now seeing clients with disorded and emotional eating. The program combines counselling with nutrition to  help clients separate food from their feelings. 

I also do some food consultancy work – which mostly entails food styling, photography and recipe creation for like minded brands. After studying at IINH I did  the 12 week professional cookery course at Ballymaloe and worked as a chef for a number of years. I think the marriage of nutrition and practical cooking skills is  important when it comes to advising clients and creating easy to follow recipes. 

Over lockdown I opened an online shop selling natural lifestyle products www.nb-goods.com selling all of the items I use myself and recommend to clients. I now have a brick and mortar shop on the Main Street in Wicklow Town and I’m enjoying being  part of the community here and chatting to customers in person. While I was  studying at IINH I worked in health food shops and always dreamt I would open  something similar myself one day.

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A post shared by Niamh Browne (@niamhmbrowne)

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

I would say the most rewarding part of my job is when I see clients for a follow-up session and they have implemented lots of the advice I had given them and are  feeling much healthier and happier. I love to see that people are really deriving joy from the foods they are eating, as eating well shouldn’t mean depriving yourself of  delicious foods.

From your experience working with clients, do you feel that nutrition and  health is well understood? What simple advice would you give people?

I think there is a huge amount of confusion around this area. There are often so many conflicting opinions in the media it’s difficult for people to know which  information to listen to. 

I think keeping things simple- Lots of water, lots of rest and lots of vegetables is a good place to start. Getting adequate amounts of protein, healthy fats and fibre are important too. I definitely believe that all foods can fit into a healthy diet.

 

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What is your personal nutrition philosophy?

I don’t believe in faddy diets or restrictions. I think the 80/20 guideline is a good  philosophy to go by meaning nourishing your body with an abundance of nutrient dense foods 80% of the time and allowing 20% for flexibility and joy meaning no foods are completely off the table, everything can be enjoyed in moderation.

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in living a healthier  lifestyle? 

I would say to start by eating the rainbow- adding more colourful vegetables and fruit means you are getting a wide range of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and lots of  prebiotic fibre to feed your microbiome.

And what advice would you give to someone who is considering studying Nutrition  and Health Coaching?

I would encourage anyone with a keen interest to go ahead and do it. Even if your  intention is not to go into professional practice in the end, everything you learn will be really beneficial for your own health and that of your friends and family.

If you’d like to learn more about Niamh Browne, you can visit her personal website www.niamhbrowne.com or store website www.nb-goods.com, or connect with her on the below social media channels.

Instagram NT: niamhmbrowne

Instagram Store: nbgoods

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