16th June 2017
Desserts

The curse of the buffet: when genes and all-you-can-eat collide

Hotel buffet, how we love thee.  Jelly for breakfast, 24/7 burgers and the all-you-can eat dessert buffet…  Sound like culinary heaven or a recipe for disaster?   I’ve recently returned from my honeymoon in Mexico where we stayed in a beautiful, all-inclusive hotel in which there was a limitless supply of food and drink, 24 hours a day.  The food was pretty good quality; a lot of it excellent and every palate, however fussy, was catered for.  There were a la carte restaurants serving Thai, Italian, Japanese or Mexican specialities as well as the ubiquitous buffet restaurant, in which every night you could dine on any cuisine under the sun.  Now I’m not here to tell you about my honeymoon […]
2nd March 2017

Opinion – The Nanny State vs the Feckless Idiot

As a nutritionist, I am often asked “What causes obesity?”  The answer is initially simple yet becomes fiendishly complex.  Most scientists will tell you that we gain weight because we eat more calories than we need.  However, WHY we overeat or in some way fail to eat a healthy balanced diet is far more complicated.  When I explain this, I am often met with derision from seemingly intelligent individuals who consider that anyone eating a less than perfect diet is unintelligent, feckless, wilfully negligent and that they are therefore beyond help.  Why should the state intervene to make everyone’s life miserable for the sake those individuals who can’t control themselves?  Here’s why what and how much we eat is not […]
5th November 2016

Opinion – What DO we do about obesity?

I attended the Childhood Obesity Summit at which the great and the good of the nutrition, medical and behavioural science worlds collided to share their views on what is a global problem.  Obesity is inextricably linked to GDP yet is also associated with societal deprivation.  The UK is ‘the fat man of Europe’ spending more on treating obesity and type 2 diabetes than collectively on policing, the fire service and judiciary, to quote Dame Sally Davies, the Chief Medical Officer.  With the latest Childhood Obesity Plan from the Government seen as a missed opportunity, particularly in early years settings, what should we be doing to combat obesity?   First things first, if I had a pound for every time I […]
20th October 2016

Is your office cake culture taking the biscuit?

With a birthday, engagement, wedding, promotion or a return from holiday being virtually a weekly occurrence across the country’s offices, is our traditional way of celebrating, with sweet treats, harming our health?   I visit many offices as part of my work as a freelance nutrition consultant and while many provide fruit bowls, virtually all of them have a ready supply of cakes, biscuits or sweets, often on several days of the week because there has been a reason for someone to bring them in.  When running health workshops, many employees tell me that while they know it’s bad for them, when unhealthy snacks are sitting next to the fruit bowl in the office, they find it almost impossible to […]