Nutritionist Wendy Urwin.

Food ‘revelation’ was a catalyst for new business for Highland women

Every Monday, we ask key questions to small businesses. Here we talk to diet expert Wendy Urwin, of Wendy Urwin Nutrition, based near Cannich in the Highlands.

How and why did you start working?

Twenty years ago I was a physical wreck. I’ve had tummy problems since childhood, and being a hard eater and presence didn’t help me on the worst diet Scotland could offer circa 1980 – sweet drinks, fizzy drinks and fried food.

My health deteriorated throughout my twenties so that I could not continue my work as a freshwater biologist and microbiologist, while also struggling to take care of my daughter.

GPs were skeptical about chronic fatigue and could do little more than offer antidepressants and antacids irritable bowel syndromewho did not help.

A healthy diet was the answer

I knew food affects my mood and energy, so in desperation I experimented and eagerly read what little research was available. My health slowly started to improve, but due to a lack of support from a trained practitioner, the road was rocky with many setbacks.

The system of revelation and nutrition can heal in areas where traditional medicine has not been able to inspire me Finding a way to help others in similar situations lead happy and fulfilling lives.

A healthy diet was an inspiration for Mrs. Orwin.

How did you get to where you are today?

First, I had to obtain a professional qualification to be able to provide a high level of clinical support. She enrolled in a postgraduate (MSc) Nutritional Therapy course in York and trained with the Institute of Functional Medicine, along with physicians and practicing physicians who wanted to learn more about nutrition and lifestyle medicine. This was a game changer.

After qualifying, I opened my first clinic at the Nourish Café in Inverness, and quickly filled my books with clients. Working online before Covid allowed me to reach clients across the Highlands & Islands and beyond.

Everything has been running online during the pandemic, but now I’m excited to return to in-person counseling and launch a clinic that specializes in Highland Health Center In Inverness next month to support people with irritable bowel syndrome.

who helped you?

My family was amazing, especially my mother who took care of my kids and pets when I was in college, and my husband works away from home. My husband kept the faith and supported me, even when he had no idea what I was doing or what I was talking about.

Working as a sole trader, with limited trading sense, it was also very reassuring to have small business association At my back for legal advice and support when I need it.

What’s the best advice you ever got?

Go for it. It’s a bit of a clichĂ©, but a lot of discerning people don’t turn their business aspirations into reality out of fear that they aren’t ready – that they need more training and planning time, or that they should prioritize family. Don’t strive for perfection, just choose it.

What is your biggest mistake?

Selling classic cars that were worth a fortune isn’t small now.

What is your greatest achievement?

Helping clients improve their health and quality of life gives me amazing job satisfaction.

How is your business managing the rapidly increasing costs, and what should the government do to help?

I’m fortunate to have low overheads, and working online has reduced the need for commuting, but I still need to heat my office during the winter. The rising cost of home heating oil is a concern for those of us who live in remote parts of the highlands, and it’s something the government has yet to acknowledge and address.

What do you do to relax?

Spend some time outdoors with my family, dog and ponies which also gives me a daily workout.

What are you currently reading, listening to or sticking with on TV?

I’m reading Sarah Weinman’s Still Life – recommended by book club friends. Before the arrival of 4G, I hadn’t had TV reception for over 20 years, so I’m not much of a TV viewer.

What are you wasting your money on?

I have dowries so there is no money to save.

What is the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

Hydrate with a glass of water and then coffee.

What do you drive and dream of driving?

I drive a Honda Civic – a great little car. I run on petrol and can claim pre-owned Mk2 Golf GTI classic and 1968 Mustang. I long after an old pickup truck to pull my horse’s chest.

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