Diet Experts Abound

OK it’s June and the weather here in Ipplepen and across the South West is – well – after a bloody awful May alternating between being wet and cold and in most case both wet and cold the weather is now great.

But then again when is the weather never great?

The good news however is that not only has the South West experienced the lowest incidence of Covid but it also has one of the most efficient and highest number of people vaccinated in England.

So what does it mean with summer now well on its way?

It means of course people are starting to think about or in many cases have already started to prepare for the summer by shedding a few (OK more than a few) pounds of surplus fat.

Diets of all kinds now abound and adverts on the magic box in the corner extolling the virtues of a variety of them have significantly increased in the past few weeks.

The consequence of which is that it is also the time of year when the nutritional experts come out of their winter hibernation to tell us what we should and should not eat and drink whilst at the same time the television is populated with chefs showing us how to prepare delicious high calorie dishes.

I’m not sure how long I have left on this planet but it does seem that the number of ‘experts’ telling us what we shouldn’t eat and drink has increased exponentially over the past few years.

I’m in no way suggesting that everything the food experts say is complete baloney but good grief there has to be limits to how many times and ways we can be told that what we are eating and drinking is going to kill us.

Now I’m no nutritionist but I do recognise that certain types of food and the fats they contain when consumed in excessive quantities significantly contribute to heart attack, chronic illnesses and hardening of the arteries.

I find it amazing that there are even such things as nutrition summits where ‘experts’ discuss health data which they then use to advise us all what to eat in order to healthy.

Vegans and vegetarians – as they are entitled to do – scream that the evidence of health related issues combined with the impact of food production on the environment should be enough to turn people from being carnivores.

They are so convinced that on occasions they even turn to taking direct actions to make their point.

I’m not sure how such direct actions relate to supporting their argument that being a vegetarian provides a balanced nutritional diet.

But then again there is a great deal about those who take sides in the balanced diet arguments that I don’t understand.

And I certainly don’t know how accurate the estimate that over 70% of the world population are vegetarian is, but if it is accurate then they outnumber the carnivore by three to one.

For over 70 years we’ve been told we must eat more fruit and vegetables to ensure we have a prolonged healthy life.

The problem I have with this is it doesn’t take into account the improvements in health care or the scientific discoveries in medicine in the same period.

In the first five years of my life we still had rationing in the United Kingdom following the 1939-1945 war and life expectancy in 1949 was 66 years for men and 70 years for women.

We were encouraged to drink what is now called ‘full fat’ milk and at school we were given a third of a bottle of milk every day, we ate bread and dripping (arguing who was going to get the brown jelly bits) with lashings of salt on it, fruit when it was available was limited to apples, and vegetables were cooked until they turned to mush.

Incidentally everything from Yorkshire puddings (which also doubled-up as a pudding served up with jam on it) to chips which were cooked not in mamby pamby gluten free vegetable oil but in lard the smell of which lingered in every kitchen across the land.

The result of decades of eating the wrong foods is that the life expectancy in the UK (2020) has increased to 81.40 years which means I have plenty of time to go so I’m off to have pasty and chips for tea.