Category Archives: vegetables

The NHS are STILL giving incorrect nutritional advice for diabetes

The evidence is there – low fat diets are NOT appropriate for people with diabetes (actually they are inappropriate for most people but that’s another story)!

Whether it’s an 8-year clinical trial comparing a diet in which 30% of calorific intake comes from fat beats a low fat diet for effects on HbA1c; or a randomised pilot trial that shows the less carbs the better for diabetes; or a randomised trial that shows “the low-carbohydrate diet induced lower insulin and glucose excursions compared with the low-fat diet“, all the evidence appears to be falling on deaf NHS ears. 

Why do I think this?  Well, a lovely client of mine has recently been diagnosed as “prediabetic” with a HbA1c of 43.  And the advice she has received, in the form of a 6-page letter, is to eat:

bread, pasta, chapatis, potatoes, yam, noodles, rice and cereals…cut down on fat – a low fat diet benefits health“.  

OMG!! as they say!

This advice couldn’t be more inappropriate. An the evidence has been showing us that for several years now.  Why have the NHS not moved forward in their archaic, and potentially dangerous, advice? If you are receiving this type of information from your GP please, please question it.  My blogs, FB posts, tweets etc. all point you in the direction of the most up-to-date nutritional research and advice for diabetes.

Here are some more recent findings – finally bringing good quality proteins into the equation:

Whey protein is being linked with lower rates of diabetes. Any good nutritional therapist will understand that protein is bound to be a vital ingredient in the formula of healthy eating for diabetes – just like good fats it slows the effects of carbs in your food helping to prevent glucose and insulin spikes, and keeps you feeling fuller for longer.

Take care on the amounts of protein-rich foods you choose however.  Portion control is important.  Those enjoying meat-feasts might be taking a good thing a step too far: consuming twice the daily recommended amounts of protein from meats has been shown to compound diabetes.

Confused?  Don’t be.  Protein is beneficial in appropriate quantities.  Shout up if you need help understanding what you own portion sizes should be!


Your starter for 10-a-day!

Grill VegetableTwo simple questions for you this week:

  • How long would you like to live?
  • How healthy would you like to be as time goes by?

The latest research about the number of portions of vegetables and fruit we should be eating every day gives us this choice, as the good doctor advises in this video.

We benefit from eating good quality plant foods: fruit and vegetables.  We get reasonable benefits from eating 5 portions each day.  We get better benefits if we up that (as the Aussies already recommend) to 7-a-day.  We get even better benefits if we up it to 10-a-day.

Great!  It should be a simple choice shouldn’t it?

So why are some journalists grumbling about the new findings?  I simply don’t get it.  If you don’t want to eat 7 or 10-a-day that’s your choice.  But why do you feel it’s a good use of print space to inhibit good practice and encourage readers to stick to just 5-a-day?

I get that some people already don’t even manage 5-a-day.  I do.  And I want them to be encouraged to get up to the 5-a-day too. That may or may not mean subsidising the cost of fresh produce, but taxation is a separate argument.

The issue today is about those people who do care enough to want to make more effort to look after themselves and go on to enjoy a long and healthy life filled with the energy and vitality to make the most of those extra years.  Telegraph – you have done those readers a great disservice.  I note the date on the article entitled “10 portions of fruit and veg a day – are they having a laugh?”   I seriously hope this is the Telegraph’s idea of an April Fool’s joke?

The idea that we can’t pack in 10-a-day is simply ludicrous!  So here goes: This is your starter for 10!!


Eggs, served with tomatoes, mushrooms, baked beans (choose a good brand without sugar – yes they are out there!!)

Mid-morning snack:

How about an apple with a handful of almonds or walnuts?


Vegetable soup or a home-made vegetable juice – can’t begin to tell you how many portions you would squeeze in there!

Followed by a salad with your choice of protein (fish, chicken, meat, tofu)

Mid afternoon snack:

Vegetable crudites with half a tub of hummus (better still if that’s homemade too!)

Evening meal:

Chilli con (or sin) carne made with tomatoes, peppers, onions, possibly some aubergine – served with guacamole and fresh tomato salsa, with rice or better still quinoa


Guess what?  You’ve had more than 10-a-day easily, and you haven’t been a slave in the kitchen because none of these things are difficult or take hours to make.  Do it all in batches one day each week and you’re really laughing!