Fad diets debunked by early career researchers

An article in the Daily Mail today on the Voice of Young Science project looking at the evidence behind fad diets:

dailymail.co.uk/health/arti...

Good diet advice is being lost amid the stream of silly fads and to prove the point, the VoYS members made up five spoof diets and mixed them up with five 'real' diets. Can you spot the spoofs? tryinteract.com/quiz/SenseA...

5 Replies

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  • I find it amazing that the unsupported dogma in favour of sugar continues, though it doesn't surprise me entirely because there is so much money tied up in it.

    How about applying equal scrutiny to what is being said? "It would be difficult to avoid sugar" well that depends if you're talking about the refined, added, micro-nutrient free kind, or the kind you get in nature that tends to be wrapped in fibre that makes it more difficult to overeat.

    Likening this to a fad diet to try and diminish its credibility in this manner does not hold water; how can it be a fad if the hunter-gatherer diet is how everyone ate for hundreds of thousands of years? Another inconvenient truth. Refined sugar has only been available to the masses for a minuscule time in evolutionary terms, and the chronic diseases that accompany it.

    Association doesn't mean causation, but the evidence is coming to light that vested interests have hidden the harm that sugar causes as the smoking industry did with tobacco.

  • Who are you accusing of peddling "unsupported dogma" here, in your post, above? My reading of the article is that is contains sensible observations about the difficulty and possible dangers about trying entirely remove sugars from your diet, given that sugar is a naturally occurring compound in many foodstuffs.

  • There certainly are some very bad diet recommendations about. Unfortunately human biochemistry is still not really well understood and people are often desperate to lose weight.

    I must admit that I thought the "No sugar" diet meant "no added sugar" rather than the naturally occurring sort. But I think I might take issue with the idea that cutting out all natural sugars could harm you. The ketogenic diet, with less than 20g carbs a day, can be used successfully to treat metabolic syndrome (and for treating epilepsy). The "caveman" diet also looks to be a useful approach for people with autoimmune disorders.

    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articl...

    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/226...

  • The spoof diets quiz by Voice of Young Science (VoYS) was also covered in the Guardian: theguardian.com/society/the... Thanks Emily

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