Mrs Rachael Barlow



Specialises in

Registered Dietitian with more than 20 years experience, Rachael’s career has spanned the NHS, private sector and academia. Rachael qualified as a dietitian in Cardiff in 1994 and after a short stint in London, returned to Cardiff to work as a clinical dietitian. Rachael is passionate about all aspects of nutrition. In 2003, she won a Fellowship grant from the prestigious Health Foundation charity which enabled Rachael to develop her leadership skills, whilst conducting research. She obtained a PhD from Cardiff University School of Medicine in 2008. In 2009 she took up a part-time position in Cardiff University alongside her NHS role to enable her to pursue her research interests. She also teaches future health professionals and medical students about all aspects of nutrition and principles of Enhanced Recovery after Surgery. Rachael has won several national prizes for her work over the years the British Journal of Surgery prize, The Nutrition Society prize and British Association of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition prize for her nutrition research. Rachael was invited to write the nutrition in surgical chapter for the ‘Manual of Dietetic Practice’ which is the ‘bible’ outlining the best practice for dietitians working within the UK. She is regularly invited to speak at national and international conferences.

She currently works for the NHS in Wales as a Clinical Lead working closely with clinical teams delivering surgical care across hospitals in Wales to ensure services are delivering the optimal surgical care for patients. This includes Bariatric surgery. Rachael was instrumental in the launch of the Enhanced Recovery after Surgery (ERAS) Programme in Wales in 2010. Rachael also acts as an advisor to Welsh Government on surgical care and holds several national positions representing the dietetic profession and in multi-professional organisations. Rachael also conducts her own research to help ensure that Dietitians and healthcare professionals deliver care based on clinical evidence and is cutting edge. Rachael has published and presented research and guidelines on a national and international basis. Rachael regularly speaks at healthcare professional events and patient events and is passionate about the subject of nutrition. She works closely advising all members of the surgical teams including dietitians on what care is best for patients undergoing surgery. In addition, she teaches future health professionals nutrition including medical students within Cardiff University.


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Additional information

Allied health professionals

Nutritional care before and after surgery Bariatric Surgery Nutrition for Gastrointestinal disease Nutrition for people with Cancer Nutrition for Health and Wellbeing Rachael set up the dietetic service within Spire Cardiff Hospital 10 years ago. Within Spire, Cardiff, Rachael undertakes one-to-one consultations with clients undergoing bariatric procedures including assessment of their suitability, advises clients on dietary changes to optimise health and reduce symptoms associated with digestive diseases and advises clients undergoing cancer treatment and after treatment on issues relating to nutritional status and well being. Rachael has a specific interest in helping clients improve their digestive health, such as IBS. She offers her advanced dietetic knowledge using the latest evidence for treating symptoms.

Professional memberships

The British Dietetic Association

Health Professions Council

Enhanced Recovery after Surgery UK Society Faculty

British Association of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition

Professional leadership

National Clinical Lead Enhanced Recovery after Surgery
Clinical Lead Dietitian University Hospital of Wales (currently on secondment to a national leadership role)
Clinical Academic Lecturer, School of Healthcare Science, Cardiff University

Chief Dietician, Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust.

Rachael’s hobbies and interest include trekking, fundraising, and singing in an informal choir.