Emma Little, BSC Dietetics, AFMCP
My fondest childhood memories involved spending time with my mother in the kitchen in sunny South Africa (cooking for a family of 7!) where she would teach me about the benefits of the foods comprising our meals – such as having most of the plate filled with colourful vegetables; and in our cottage where she practised aromatherapy and reflexology – always candlelit, with calming music and heavenly smells of essential oils. This is where my spiritual and natural health inquiry started as I learnt about the mind-body-spirit and health connections, and later in life studying yoga. As an avid runner with longstanding sports injuries which never really resolved despite years of professional support, I sought to be able to heal myself using my nutritional and spiritual knowledge – through a functional medicine and lifestyle approach.
How I work
My motto (passed down by my mother) is that prevention is better than cure and I bring this into my practice to focus on choosing healthful lifestyle practices and food as medicine, rather than taking tablets to mask a symptom. A therapeutic dietary plan is always accompanied with an explanation as to why it is recommended as I feel it’s important to walk away with an understanding and rationale for guidance rather than a simple to do list or diet sheet. Because we know too well that knowledge does not automatically lead to action, I combine providing dietetic advice with mindfulness-based behavioural approaches to support taking action aligned with the values we hold – recognising that each person has individual needs and preferences.
My areas of expertise include but are not limited to:
- Weight management & bariatric surgery
- FODMAP diet & IBS
- Cardiometabolic & Diabetes
- Detox programs & elimination diets
- Gluten and Dairy free diets
Training and qualifications BSC Dietetics, AFMCP
I graduated from Stellenbosch University in 2006, following which I worked at the largest teaching hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa. It was here that I realised the importance (and my key focus) of prevention being preferable to cure – whilst working with pregnant ladies diagnosed with gestational diabetes, and infant Nutriton. I led the development of the baby friendly hospital initiative, recognising that promoting health starts in the early developmental years, and even before conception through maternal health.
I moved to London in 2008 and spent many years in the NHS working in almost every clinical area in which one could, to explore my preferred specialism, before moving into Private Practice in 2012 with Lynda at London Dietitians – including inpatients at Parkside Hospital; and The London Rheumatology Clinic at Parkside Hospital.
After a brief stint in Australia I returned to the UK and took up research & clinical roles in Metabolic Obesity and Bariatric surgery in the NHS. I was soon drawn back to Private with FM Wimbledon to fulfil my ultimate passion for functional medicine and a holistic approach to health
My interests and hobbies
Anything to do with nature and outdoors! Growing up in South Africa and in a sporty family, I spent as many hours in the day as I could outside – come sunshine or rain. My father was a serious marathon runner so I joined him on the roads from my early teens. Running and music bring the biggest smile to my dial!
I wanted to be a game ranger when I was young, fascinated by the animals and plants and life that sunshine brings. These days I’ve swapped the bushveld for pot plants and a spot of gardening.
I studied yoga in my early 20’s and being spiritually oriented means that my hobbies tend to be anything that brings me joy and calm, like cycling to a park with a book in the afternoon sunshine and meditating near water.