Cara Marr is a dietician and nutritionist at Yampa Valley Hospital and a nutritionist associated with a private practice, Nutrition Prescription, Inc., at Align Wellness in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Many clients come to her because they want to lose weight. Cara emphasizes that losing weight involves more than being sent home with a diet and the admonishment to exercise.
A graduate of Colorado State University where she majored in nutrition, Cara did her internship at the Mayo Clinic School of Health Sciences in Jacksonville, Florida. Cara pointed out, “The Mayo Clinic is a teaching hospital. Consequently, we had access to all the latest research material.”
Cara says that nutrigenomics, the study of diet-genome interaction as related to certain diseases, caught her attention while she was doing her internship. “It is an emerging study. The idea is to decrease vulnerability to certain diseases through diet and proper supplements. The study of each individual’s genome has proven that not everyone can tolerate or metabolize the same drug or flourish with the same dietary habits. While I am not a specialist in the emerging diet-genome study it has made me aware that each patient must be treated as an individual.”
Each patient who visits Cara’s office is asked to fill out a detailed form of his/her family’s history of illnesses. She studies also her patient’s recent lab results which may indicate that her patient is at risk for certain conditions. Cara emphasizes, “Through diet you can decrease a lot of diseases. Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine has on their web site a statement from the American Institute for Cancer Research explaining that a healthy diet and other lifestyle changes can prevent an estimated 340,000 cancer cases per year.”
Patients who come to Cara learn quickly that she understands that food gives us comfort and a person’s weight is personal and emotional. “People who ask to lose weight may not correlate that their migraine headaches, or their lack of energy may be a health problem. We have better results with weight loss if we focus on our whole body’s constitution.”
A WHOLE NEW STORY
by Edith Lynn Beer