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Weird dietary trends - the pseudo-nutritional nonsense

Thu, 14 July, 2016

About a year ago I was having a morning coffee in town and the table next to me was taken by three strapping young blokes in plaid shirts, with beards at various stages of developments. I accidentally heard one ordering a breakfast frittata ‘but please only egg whites - no yolks’. Why? I’d wondered for a long time. They didn’t look like on a weight-loss programme (I think bacon was involved in the frittata) and they seemed young enough to have witnessed the egg-evil-cholesterol myth busted. I concluded that it must have been a hipster thing - you know, something about craft beer and egg whites…

Weird dietary trends amaze me: the clean eating brigade (but I wash my hands too…), the paleo, the gluten-, dairy-, joy-free folk. Amazing how bulls***-susceptible some people are. With the faddish weight-loss programmes you can at least understand the motivation. I’ve tried it all, the common sense solution of eating HAM* too difficult to be practicable, I’ll try this celery soup followed by lean steak poached in milk - who knows, it’s so bizarre it might work. It’s so bizarre; the sheer wonderment might take my mind off the fact that I’m constantly peckish.

Not so with the pseudo-nutritional nonsense. Vegetarianism is a mindset which I respect - but it has nothing to do with health. It is more difficult for a vegetarian to consume enough protein to be healthy, as well as to avoid excess of carbohydrates. But veganism is frankly bonkers - would you not eat eggs from fully organically reared chickens? Not milk the cow even if it gets painful infection of the udder? Plus, some vegan foods smell.

Dairy - you need it, as a source of calcium, vitamin D and potassium. And the world without cheese would be dull. Gluten - please, don’t start me off. About 1% of mankind suffers from gluten intolerance - everyone else should eat wheat on balance with other grains as the base of their diet and, again, the main source of fibre, B vitamins and minerals. And yes, buckwheat crepes are gorgeous, polenta cakes fantastic and an almond milkshake is actually really tasty - but it should be incidental, taste-oriented and not one’s policy or strategy.

So what’s the point? I don’t understand it, or the point of depriving yourself of good things in life, in moderation, but then it must be somewhat similar to a religious zeal - and out of the two, I guess I’d rather people believed gluten was evil.

*Half As Much - the best diet that exists

 

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