Sophie Medlin is a well-recognized consultant dietitian specialized in gastrointestinal and colorectal health. She writes and appears in the national and international media to discuss evidence-based nutrition and dietary trends.
Sophie, you are a dietitian and started your own consultancy. How did you get there?
I was lucky enough to know that I wanted to be a dietitian from around the age of 15 so I studied Nutrition and Dietetics straight from school. I then worked in National Health Service hospitals in the UK where I specialized in the nutritional consequences of colorectal surgery. Later I went on to lecture and research in Nutrition and Dietetics at two universities, most recently at King’s College London before I decided to step out into running my business full time in February 2019.
Tell us about your consultancy. Who are your clients, how do you support them?
Some of my consultancy clients employ me for a single project to develop and fact check nutritional content or to develop a single product. Other companies require ongoing support in the development of a nutrition brand, here I will be continually working on new content or researching the nutritional habits and needs of their target audience for the development of new products and services.
What are the most exciting projects you have been working on?
I continue to be active in research, volunteering and clinical work in the field of colorectal surgery which is where my clinical interest lies. Commercially I have recently been working with two companies to produce a range of services and products for people who want to optimize their mental health and performance which has been really innovative and exciting.
You are passionate about making nutrition a key part of medical treatment. Why is this important for our future society?
I am really passionate about promoting the clinical expertise of dietitians as being the go-to nutrition professionals for nutritional advice on medical conditions. The general public is very interested in wellness from a holistic and alternative therapy perspective but where there are medical conditions, nutritional advice must be considered part of the medical treatment. Dietitians are appropriately trained and skilled to provide this advice. In the UK, almost all dietitians will spend the majority of their career in the National Health Service. Unfortunately, the health service is underfunded and dietitians are only able to see those who are acutely in need of support. This means that there are long waiting lists for patients with conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and polycystic ovarian syndrome to see dietitians and sometimes there may not be a service for them at all. During times of economic uncertainty, these issues worsen. Due to this people become more vulnerable to non-evidence based messages and companies who pray on their desperation for answers. This is why I am passionate about raising the profile of dietitians online and in the private sector, to encourage the public to seek answers from credible sources who have a responsibility and obligation to only provide evidence based solutions.
What is nutrition for you?
A science that is endlessly fascinating.
In which field nutrition experts are really good in?
I think nutrition experts are doing amazing work in the field of gut health and developing our understanding of the importance of optimizing gut health for our overall health.
In the nutrition field - who inspires you?
My business partner Dr. Nicola Guess is a source of contrast inspiration to me. Her passion for her subject (remission and management of type 2 diabetes) and her research is a credit to dietetics. Her work ethic is second to none and as is her unrelenting demand to be respected and remunerated equivocally to her male peers.
Sophie is working on a lot of great projects, these are just a few of them: she designed vitamins for Heights, she is seeing patients for Nimaya Mindstation, and she's doing consultancy for Nell. Get to know more about Sophie's work at citydietitians.co.uk, on Instagram or LinkedIn.