She is a licensed optometrist and has been practicing eye care for 15 years, but Dr. Neda Gioia is putting a new and healthier look on this specialty, one that can be expanded to all medical specialties. Already, it has been proven to improve peoples’ vision, outlook on life, and better general health.
The outgoing, friendly optometrist whose office located at Avenue at the Common is called Integrative Vision, because Dr. Gioia is on the cutting age of integrating good nutritional practices for her patients, along with the excellent routine eye care she offers. Integrative describes the doctor’s approach that involves treating the body and optimizing the patient’s foundation, following her belief everyone should maximize ways to improve quality of vision and reduce ocular disease risks.
New Jersey had made great strides in recent years in recognizing nutritional health as a source of healthy living, the doctor said, noting that within a very short time, the state will require testing and licensing for nutritionists to practice anywhere in the state. With her own diverse educational background, she is ready for anything. In addition to her doctorate in optometry from SUNY College of Optometry in New York City, Dr. Gioia also holds degrees in Biology and Psychology from Rutgers University, and over the past seven years, also earned a certification in functional medicine, and a fellowship at the Ocular Wellness and Nutrition Society. She is a board member of Ocular Wellness, co-chairing the fellowship program. As if that isn’t enough, Dr. Gioia also holds a Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS) degree and has completed the AFMCP module through the Institute of Functional Medicine.
Armed with this education and experience, Dr. Gioia has an immediate goal to continue to provide the integrated health care she offers in her office, suited to the needs and desires of each individual patient. “If someone wants to limit a visit to routine eye care, or a visit for contacts or glasses, of course I just concentrate on that aspect of their health,” she explained. However, if a patient is interested in nutritional tips and ideas that can help keep not only their eyes but their entire body healthier, “then I also offer a nutritional approach.” For those who want a really in-depth approach to eye and general body health, the doctor/nutritionist also offers a six months to a year wellness program highlighting the importance of good nutrition for optimum health.
The optometrist also believes physicians in all specialties are becoming more aggressive in recognizing the need to embrace nutrition as a sub-specialty and it is one of her goals to create a core model for this approach to health and teach it to others. “I want to prove something,” she laughs, and you can hear the determination in her voice. “ I want to prove I can make this work.”
The doctor’s sub-specialty approach is also a subject at home, inasmuch as her husband, Kevin is a physician specializing in urology whose office is also in Shrewsbury. Both medical professionals know that any problem caught early enough is much easier to resolve, and regular visits for medical care, diagnostics, education and testing all help recognize a problem either in its early stages or at ground level for a future problem. In eye care, for instance, it is rare for children to have regular eye exams by an optometrist, with most parents only making appointments if a youngster is having a problem seeing the blackboard at school, or squinting, or some obvious sign of vision loss. “Just like we don’t wait for our teeth to be cavity-filled before we have regular dental visits, so should we have regular healthy eye care visits. It is the sense most people are most fearful of damaging, losing or living without, so why not ensure good health from the very beginning.”
Now settled in a gracious Victorian home in Little Silver, Dr. Gioia has 15 years of clinical experience spanning three different states. Her personal success in nutrition inspired her to pursue a formal education in functional medicine and clinical nutrition so she could implement it in her practice. She founded Integrative Vision and describes it as an optometry practice with a special emphasis on nutritional interventions and functional medicine modalities for eye health.
“My real goal is to heal, educate, and, ultimately, empower patients to achieve better health and a better life,” she explains. “For me, it’s a way of life. For my patients, it will offer them a better insight into how to take the best care of not only their eyes but their body and outlook as well.”
Neda Gioia, OD, CNS, FOWNS
180 Ave at the Common
Shrewsbury, NJ 07702
To read more from the author Muriel J. Smith, click here: https://www.venividiscripto.com/