NTOI Research Project – Proof of Concept


We are embarking on a research project and need your participation. This project was proposed by Ciara Wright in a discussion with the NTOI Directors this past summer.

With a vision to strengthen Nutritional Therapists as a vital part of the Irish healthcare professional community we feel that it is important that we can back up our work with relevant clinical data.

The vision for this project is to gather enough data, 100 suitable participants, in order  to able to have something tangible to show to health insurers about the positives of NT interventions.

Doing a data collection in this manner is an opportunity to create something that is a little more homogenous than just using individual case studies.

To get this project off the ground we need our NTOI practitioners to collect a food frequency questionnaire and symptom questionnaire from your clients, whom consent to and that are suitable candidates to participate in the project. This will be done at the initial consultation and then again three months later.  We are using a food frequency questionnaire that has been validated for the Irish population. This has been published by Ciara Wright and colleagues in the European Journal of Nutrition.  We are using MYMOP as the symptom questionnaire, also validated. The instructions are to be carefully followed so that all data is homogenous.  No questions can be altered.


The Data Collection Process – Instructions for NT

  • Patient selection: Patient selection should be unbiased in terms of expected outcome, age, sex, ethnicity or any other reason. However some patient groups may fall under the following categories that may make them less eligible for tracking


  • Patient who will undergo strict dietary exclusions e.g. low FODMAP diet which cannot be accurately measured by a general FFQ


  • Patients with outcomes that may not change in three months e.g. a fertility patient who’s aim is to get pregnant. This is not a measurable ‘symptom’ in three months.  If the patient also has symptoms such as excess weight, fatigue, general unwellness that may be attributable to their infertility and which you intend to improve upon as an indirect way of improving their fertility for example, then this can be measured with the symptom questionnaire


  • Informed consent: Please request from your patients to participate in this research project to help Nutritional Therapy to achieve support from health insurance, which will help everyone. They should know that the questionnaires may take about 20-30 minutes.  They should understand that this process needs to be repeated after exactly three months.

They should also understand very clearly that all of their data will be protected by GDPR and their personal data is only so that we can track initial and follow up outcomes.  No personal data will be shared with any other party ever. Anonymous results only will be used for research and/or marketing purposes.


  • Resources: NTOI will provide you will all the documents you need to collect the data from your client(s) for this project. There will be a patient form for both the initial and follow up which will include consent, patient details, food frequency questionnaire and symptom questionnaire. There will be an NT form for you to record patient details so we can collate the data.


  • Collecting data: You will collect the required information at first consultation and then again three months later. The 3 month follow up session is of utmost importance. The follow up session can be done by phone or post if there is no appointment scheduled.

Please store patient information securely in accordance with GDPR between the first and follow up consultation.

  • Returning your forms: Once you have collected the data from both the initial consultation and the three month follow up you need to post hard copies of all the data to; Linn Thorstensson, Roseville, Bridgeland West, Rathcormac, Co. Cork.  


  • Timeframe: You can start collecting data from your clients in Oct, Nov, Dec 2019 and in Jan 2020. You can conduct follow up sessions for Oct clients in Jan, Nov clients in Feb, Dec clients in March and January clients in April. All hard copies of collected data must be posted to Linn by 30th of April 2020.


Data Analysis

  • Linn will hold on to these hard copies until the data input process is ready to take place.
  • At the suggested deadline, all completed forms will be entered into excel sheets in accordance with the published methods. This job will be assigned to a paid administrator.
  • After all the data has been inputted, Ciara will be in charge to mine the data, with the aim to write up a White Paper with the results.



  • Practitioners can start collecting data in Oct, Nov, Dec, January. The follow up will be done from each client after a three month period so the January clients will be followed up with in April. No new initial data after January. Data collation and start of data entry to begin May 2020.

We are asking all of our full practicing members to aim to send in data collection from at least one of your clients. This is a project that will benefit us all as NT professionals long term and strengthen the support for Nutritional Therapy. We need your participation!


Here are the forms you need in order to collect the data from your participating clients:

Instructions on how to collect the data

Initial Research Questionnaire

Follow Up Questionnaire

Patient Information Sheet


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