25th January 2017

Hands off our roast potatoes!

  This week, a funny thing happened.  When the not-so-new news story broke that browned toast and crispy roast potatoes might give us cancer, the nation held up its hands and, as one, declared, “Enough is enough!”  We’ve accepted that too much sugar, salt and the wrong kinds of fat are bad for us but seriously, ROAST POTATOES?  That’s a step too far.  Let’s look at the facts behind the headlines.  In summary, as Douglas Adams advises, “Don’t panic.”   The headlines stem from the publication of the Food Standards Agency’s (FSA) new campaign “Go for Gold” to help people minimise how much acrylamide they eat.  Acrylamide is a (potentially cancer-causing – more on this later) chemical that is formed […]
18th January 2017

Does social media distort body image?

Social media can be a tremendous force for good but does its darker side harbour problems for our body image and mental health?  I review the evidence and offer suggestions for how we deal with this potential ticking time bomb for our mental health.   Much research has shown, over the last two decades, that the ‘thin ideal’ portrayed in the traditional media (films, television, magazines, billboards etc.) is linked to negative body image and subsequently an increased risk of disordered eating.  The near constant presence of this thin ideal in some areas of the media normalise a body type that for most is neither realistic nor achievable but once this image becomes internalised in an individual, it becomes a […]
10th January 2017

Clean eating is dead! Long live the next fad.

So Ella Mills and the Hemsley sisters have distanced themselves from clean eating?  Or have they?  Why have the clean eating gurus distanced themselves from the trend they helped create?   Ella Mills has been quoted as saying that the clean eating movement is “dirty” and a fad diet.  Jasmine Hemsley stated “When we first heard it, we thought it meant without pesticides, or foods without junk in it, no preservatives. That’s all it means to us. Most people’s idea of clean eating now is salad with no sauce, or green juice. We have never really engaged with that.”   Melissa Hemsley added: “We’re not interested in making anyone feel fearful of food, scared of food, confused about food. We’re […]
31st December 2016

Why New Year diets don’t work

I’m sure we’ll all be happy to see 2016 consigned to the compost bin of time but is Jan 1st 2017 the best time to decide to lose weight with the new diet trend you read in a blog?  I’m all for making healthier choices but while these popular diets might offer initial success, you’ll find the weight loss tapering off and unhealthy habits creeping back in.  Here’s why most fad diets fail.   What happens when you diet? Generally, you reduce the number of calories you eat and often you eat lots of new healthier foods like vegetables, salads, high protein and high fibre foods and cut out foods with lots of added sugar and salt.  You may exclude […]