My Australian Life: Rachel Cunard

My Australian Life: Rachel Cunard

Rachel Cunard, 29 is a model nutritionist who works on the front line in a clinic close to the Prince of Wales hospital in Sydney where many of her patients present with the debilitating symptoms of a modern, industrialised lifestyle.

The clinical nutritionist has a BHSc (NutDMed) qualifications and is dedicated to providing long-term, scalable solutions to prevent symptoms progressing into chronic disease.

She also consults online and belongs to a group known as The Nutrient Collective, dedicated to reversing the symptoms of many common conditions including Polycystic Ovary Syndrome through changes in lifestyle and diet.

I’ve modelled on and off for years and it complements my work.

As a model I really have to look after myself. I need to have good skin at all times, so it helps that I know which nutrients to feed myself. I guess it’s about being the best you can be, which is what I try to teach my patients. 

I was born in South East England but I wouldn’t live anywhere else than Australia now.

I came here several years ago and fell in love with the healthy, outdoorsy lifestyle, so I ended up studying for my degree here. Then I set up my home in Bondi where I sometimes go surfing twice a day. Australia has so much to offer and I feel very fortunate to absorb its natural beauty.

The trend towards plant based menus is great but I’d like to see more.

We even have plant based burgers now at major chains but rather than having meat substitutes, I’d prefer that vegetables and fruits are celebrated in their own right. People are so focused on a meat free substitute when really it’s about getting wholegrain into their diet with seasonal vegetables and fruit.

Many of the conditions we suffer from are through poor lifestyle choices.

Some are nutrient deficient and eat far too much sugar. I’m really passionate about people not having to live in pain and to be happy and well. That’s why I became a nutritionist.

Refined Sugar is a major culprit in many skin conditions

It can result in inflammation and many more problems but not all sugars are bad. The sugar found in a piece of fruit is fine and that’s it’s natural form with fibre, so it actually regulates sugar levels but drinking fruit juice is a no no, particularly commercial brands.

I’m not anti-alcohol or coffee.

But it’s about moderation. Perhaps enjoying a wine with a meal or a few drinks on weekends but definitely not binge drinking and I also drink coffee but without dairy or sugar.

When I’m not working I love travelling around Australia.

Some friends and I recently drove between Darwin and Perth. It was an amazing adventure. I’ll never forget seeing the Ningaloo Reef, which is halfway up the West Australian coastline. It’s a crystal clear, coral reef teeming with turtles, vibrant fish, manta rays and majestic humpback whales. It’s surely one of the wonders of the world.

Going through Covid is making us more caring.

It’s put the emphasis on health and wellbeing. I think people are such more aware of what they’re putting into their bodies now and it’s slowed down our lifestyle. Many have discovered the simple pleasure of walking in their own areas and getting to know their neighbours. For myself that’s what it’s all about - support, kindness and integrity are the foundations of my practice.

ABOUT THE WRITER Ros Reines is a Sydney journalist and the author of four books. She is currently penning her fifth - a memoir of a life in the media.

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