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Sunday 21 July 2013


I do admit to producing a smug smile when people start boring on about their diet or how wonderful it is that they have lost weight and how proud they are of it - and, yes, you serial dieters are not only immensely boring, you are also really rather stupid.  Hence the blog yesterday.

"Healthy eating won't make you live longer. It'll just feel like it!"

I did laugh at this - thanks Ian.  But it got me thinking.  What do people think "healthy eating" is?

When in doubt, Google.

The website I picked for "healthy eating" is NHS Choices because I know that it is subject to rigorous inspecting, detailed planning and is not allowed to put stuff up that is not evidence-based.  Sigh, the first thing is does is talk about calories.  

Eat the right number of calories for how active you are, so that you balance the energy you consume with the energy you use. If you eat or drink too much, you’ll put on weight. If you eat and drink too little, you’ll lose weight. The average man needs around 2,500 calories a day (10,500 kilojoules). The average woman needs 2,000 calories (8,400 kilojoules).

So, the average man (5ft 9 in the UK) should eat 2,500 calories a day whilst doing 30 minutes of exercise per day and the average woman (5ft 4) should eat 2,000 calories a day whilst doing the same amount of exercise, in order to be healthy.

Can you see where I am going with this?

Firstly, what if you are not average?  If you are over-average, what should you do?  Should you eat more AND do more exercise?  Should you do the same amount of exercise?  If you are under-average, should you eat less?  What about the exercise?  Arghhh.  Already I am confused and I know quite a lot about calories and nutrition.

Then, we move on to how you "eat healthily":
  1. Base your meals on starchy foods (carbs, for those of you who don't understand)
  2. Eat lots of fruit and veg
  3. Eat more fish
  4. Cut down on saturated fat and sugar
  5. Eat less salt
  6. Get active and be a healthy weight
  7. Don't get thirsty
  8. Don’t skip breakfast
So far, so sensible.  Then there seems to be endless links to the "horror" of fat, what sort of fat you should eat, where you get good fat from, recommendations to use "reduced fat" dairy products 
To enjoy the health benefits of dairy without eating too much fat, use semi-skimmed milk, skimmed milk or 1% fat milks, lower-fat hard cheeses or cottage cheese, and lower-fat yoghurt.
So you would be forgiven for thinking that the most important thing to do, to "eat healthily" would be to cut out fat, right?  I mean, that's what we are constantly being told to do and we are bombarded with "fat free" yoghurts in the supermarket?  They MUST be good for you because "all fat is bad".  To lose weight and "eat healthily" absolutely the first thing you should do is cut down on your fat intake.  I mean, in the minds of the "average" person, fat = fat, right?  I mean fat people are fat because they eat too much fat.  If they just cut out the fat, they would be thin and their lives would miraculously be transformed into a Special K advert.  Just like yours will be when you manage to lose those stubborn 10lbs.



Age GroupTotal Fat Limits
Children ages 2 to 330% to 40% of total calories
Children and adolescents ages 4 to 1825% to 35% of total calories
Adults, ages 19 and older20% to 35% of total calories

Bet that shocked you, huh?

Another note of caution, for those of you who still think that the "fat free" option is your ticket to a better life.
What 'lower fat' or 'reduced fat' really means 
Just because a food packet contains the words 'lower fat' or 'reduced fat' doesn’t necessarily mean it's a healthy choice. 
The lower-fat claim simply means that the food is 30% lower in fat than the standard equivalent. So if the type of food in question is high in fat in the first place, the lower-fat version may also still be high in fat. 
For example, a lower-fat mayonnaise is 30% lower in fat than the standard version, but is still high in fat. 
Also, these foods aren't necessarily low in calories. Often the fat is replaced with sugar, and the food may end up with the same, or an even higher, energy content.

So all you idiots who ignored the blog yesterday and are continuing to try to lose weight by choosing the "low fat/high sugar and icky chemical options" or are strutting around proudly boring everyone with your 5/2 regime or how much weight you lost to "get your summer body", just remember those 5lbs extra you will be gaining in two years time and the fact that you are pouring money into huge International Food Companies who aren't there to help little ol' you lose weight and attain Nirvana.  They are there to make a profit out of mugs like you, who think that "low fat" = "healthy eating".

Get your facts straight and learn about nutrition.  Properly learn.  Don't be taken in by the massive PR by the Food Companies and the fact that the "obesity" crisis is running the minds and the mouths of our Government "health" gurus.  Read and learn the FACTS, not the hype.  Stop falling for the whole "if you eat blueberries, you will not get cancer and the fat on your thighs will miraculously disappear" stuff that has woven its way into every day thinking about nutrition.

Fad diets are just that - fads.  

Just saying.

Signed somebody who is really pissed at people talking about diets, thinness and becoming evangelical about the latest supposed "healthy eating" fad.

PS Fat is essential for brain function.  Maybe, all those idiots on "low fat" diets are harming their brain function by not giving it the right nutrients?  Conspiracy theory alert: maybe that's how the big Food Companies stay so profitable, because a large percentage of the population have lost their ability to think clearly because they aren't eating enough fat.  

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