Somi Igbene, Nutrition
Total years in practice: 5
I’m Somi, a biomedical scientist, nutritional therapist, and soon-to-be an Association of Nutrition registered nutritionist. I’m also a healthy food enthusiast, fitness lover, wellness enthusiast, wife and mama of three. I love all things natural and plant-based (not exclusive), but let’s be clear, I’m no fanatic.
I’ve started a lot of self-improvement journeys in the last ten years. Most have been hugely successful, and others have been epic fails primarily because of my radical approach. No Bueno!
I’ve learned the hard way that to making lasting habits, I need to change one thing at a time and continue to do it consistently. It hit me very recently that what I’ve been chasing all along is simple – overall wellness.
In no particular order, I want to look good, feel good, eat well, be happy, be the best mum and wife I can be, live a mindful, intentional life, give more, have peace of mind, and see the good in positive and negative situations. None of these things will happen at the snap of my fingers. I expect triumphs and colossal failures in equal measure, but above all, I look forward to the valuable lessons that I will learn along the way.
The plan is to share progressive [health-focused] knowledge and my ever-evolving wellness journey, and to hopefully inspire you to create a well-rounded, meaningful life that you love!
On May 21, 2020, I learned that my son had tested positive for the genetic blood disorder, sickle cell anaemia. I was absolutely devastated when I got the news, but after weeks of grieving, I decided to use my biomedical and nutrition background to help my son live a better quality of life.
There is some evidence to show that nutrition plays a big role in the number and severity of pain crisis that sickle cell patients experience. However, sickle cell patients are not formally educated on how nutrition impacts their conditions. Moreover, there is not much information about sickle cell anaemia because it is a disease that mainly affects black communities.
In addition to other wellness content, I also plan to share my experience of parenting a child with the condition as well as how I plan to optimise mine and my son’s diet to keep him healthy and hopefully prevent or at least significantly reduce the amount of pain crisis he may experience.
I initially wanted to keep this diagnosis private as traditional African culture dictates to prevent ‘stigma’. However, I realise that this fear of stigma is what stops the black community from growing through sharing. I know I am leaving my self open to criticism by sharing this, but I know this may be beneficial to another African or African American mother or child walking the same path.