Lifestyle and Systems Medicine.
Dr Tamsin is a medical doctor trained at Kings’ College London.
Her medical career began in psychiatry, an interest sparked as it afforded the opportunity to take a detailed history of the patient and really look at the why behind their presenting symptoms.
From an early stage she was interested in the mind-body connection and the interplay between physical and mental health.
The “bio-psycho-social approach” which attempts to understand the patients presenting symptoms in the context of the interplay between the biological, psychological and social circumstances. Interest is now being renewed in this systems approach to health, given the increasing prevalence of complex and chronic disease which is poorly tackled by a specialist approach.
Her own experience with depression and disordered eating improved markedly following the identification of nutritional insufficiencies which provoked changes in diet and lifestyle. This has fuelled a passion to help others be advocates for their own health.
In 2004 Tamsin suffered a traumatic brain injury following a skiing accident.
She spent three days in a coma in intensive care - during which time her parents were informed she may not pull through due to as brain swelling.
She did pull through, with veins like iron rods from the high doses of anti-seizure medication, but the sequelae from the head injury had a lasting impact .
Symptoms appeared, which due to their vague nature, were not well identified and treated. Severe sleep disruption, concentration difficulties, personality change, visual disturbance, and mood swings, were not attributed to the head injury because the follow up MRI scan showed no focal problems.
The junior doctors years which followed were like treading through thick mud as doctors treated the symptoms (with sleeping tablets and anti-depressants) rather than the cause - brain inflammation - of which very little practical information was available at the time. James Cracknell has championed the recognition of the lasting effects of brain injuries. And for Tamsin, his story resonated and allow her to contextualise many of the problems from which she too suffered for many years.
Problems which her conventional medical training had no answers.
Coming from an athletic childhood with genetic priming from a father who was British Road Cycling Champion and Tour De France competitor. She began running again after looking at the research that aerobic exercise stimulated the growth of new brain cells. And then signed up for a triathlon following on from a ‘dare’ with another doctor.. A competitive, deterministic mindset coupled with a body that seemed to adapt quickly to training saw her reaching the top level in amateur triathlon, at which point she was approached by a world-class coach and offered the opportunity to ‘go-pro’. From 2011-2015 Tamsin competed as an elite triathlete whilst working part time as a doctor - specialising in ironman distance racing, whilst also studying sports medicine.
In 2015, she won Ironman UK as a professional athlete - in her first attempt at the full distance. Unbeknowingly she was 24 hours pregnant at the time!
During her time as an athlete, juggling a busy lifestyle, she, like many others who try to juggle many plates simultaneously, started to feel unusual fatigue.
This triggered an interest into blood testing, and looking at biomarkers associated with performance and optimal health - as opposed to the conventional medical diagnostic of disease v. health. Reactive v. Proactive. She has worked with InsideTracker to determine the important biomarkers one could test to inform optimal performance and improve energy levels and began researching and speaking to doctors with an interest in a functional and systems approach to medicine, attending conferences around the world - eager to consume as much information as possible.
Tamsin is a founding member of the British Society for Lifestyle Medicine (BSLM) and Public Health collaboration which provide a platform through which her passion for a preventative and proactive approach to health have gained traction.
Currently Tamsin works in a dual role as a Wellness Consultant to Progressive Consumer Health companies - including Doctor Care Anywhere - a leading virtual healthcare company and also runs a concierge performance lifestyle medicine consultancy working with high profile clients in conjunction with the talented integrative chiropracter Ben Carraway.
Tamsin’s passion is personalised health-care, health-data tracking and patient empowerment to live well.
Her specialist interest is in health span (living well, longer) in the context of a systems medicine approach - particularly gut health, hormonal balance and psychological resilience.
She works closely with like minded practitioners like Dr Tommy Wood, BBC Doctor in the House - Dr Chatterjee and the network through BSLM to synthesise and translate relevant scientific material to a public audience, specifically targeted lifestyle and nutritional interventions to which can impact health-span.
The approach recognises the power of technology and machine learning to drive connected health and patient engagement coupled with a humanistic oversight. For these insights she thanks the mentorship of the extraordinary doctor and entepreneur Dr Jack Kriendler.
Tamsin retired as a professional athlete following her win at Ironman UK and the news of her pregnancy. She acknowledges that approaching life as if it is a race - with a perfectionistic drive - can be at the ultimate detriment to the learnings from the journey along the way.
Working on being present in the moment and developing a gratitude mindset continue to be transformative for her life outlook.