Business Profile: Gina Battye of Quatrz Services
TEACHER Gina Battye is a quick learner.
The managing director of Quartz Services set up the company just a year-and-a-half ago to offer advice on nutrition and help people improve their diet and fitness.
And although she is only able to devote one full day a week to her fledgling enterprise, she has already secured a solid client base – working from home and from offices in Paddock.
Gina started Quartz Services after a bout of irritable bowel syndrome about five years ago led her to change her own lifestyle and eating habits.
Now she aims to improve people’s health through better nutrition – to increase energy levels for work or sport, improve eating habits and help with weight loss.
She says: “When I suffered from IBS, I decided to watch what I eat. That was the beginning of the journey. I learned a lot over the next few years and as I learned other people were starting to ask me about it. A lot of people came to me for advice because they heard that I was studying the subject. I decided to drop a day at work and see if I could make a go of it.
“It has been challenging, but the more work I do in this field, the better I become at it.”
Gina attends networking events, including ones run by Huddersfield Town Centre Partnership, which has resulted in a number of referrals. “The advice I get from attending breakfast and lunchtime networking groups has been really useful,” she says. “My business is totally different now to what it was 18 months ago because the process of networking has helped generate new ideas.”
Clients seek Gina’s advice over diet and nutrition for a wide range of reasons. “Some people want to tone up or ask what they should be eating in preparation or after competing in sports,” she explains. “My advice is about helping people make better choices with food to improve health and well-being.”
Strategies include asking clients to keep a seven-day diary detailing what they eat and drink. Gina also visits clients and their families in their homes – offering a “fridge and cupboard weeding” survey to examine the good, the bad and the downright unhealthy foodstuffs lurking in their larders.
“A lot of people think they eat healthily, but once they start to keep a diary, it turns out they aren’t eating all that healthily,” she says. “Often, it’s simply a matter of portions.
“I talk to people about the basics of food and how it affects the body. There are a lot of conflicting messages out there.”
Gina takes her healthy eating message to individuals, community groups, schools and other organisations. She has a simple lesson for employers, too. “Office workers get the mid-morning or mid-afternoon ‘energy slump’ and head straight to the biscuit tins or vending machines,” she says. Plenty of fresh fruit would be a much healthier option.