Editorial: Diet news consumes attention

By Scott Inglis

2 comments


Two stories in our weekend paper that caught my eye focused on diet.

The first was a special report by Sonya Bateson examining fizzy drinks and how Bay children are consuming them. The method was simple - she surveyed 60 students aged between 11 and 13.

The good news is nearly half avoided fizzy drinks, or only had them on special occasions. But more than a quarter are drinking amounts one local expert says are too high and two admitted knocking back up to three litres a week.

This story caused a bit of a stir in the newsroom, especially around what is considered to be a healthy amount - one 250ml glass a week.

Some thought this was too low.

Personally I was not surprised the threshold is this low.

Fizzy drinks are a waste of time as a food source and if abused are a dental and obesity threat. But I am continually surprised at how many people I see drinking them.

I hope some readers found value in the report and use it to make any changes they feel need to be made in their household.

The second story I found interesting was Annemarie Quill's Inside Story examining a new fad diet sweeping the globe.

I found it interesting because I have been aiming to lose a few kilos and have recently taken a much stricter approach to my diet.

The Fast Diet, which has hit the Bay now, involves eating what you want for five days and restricting calorie intake for two days to 500 for women and 600 for men.

This diet seems to miss an important point - isn't losing weight sensibly supposed to be about a healthy, sustainable diet, with plenty of fruit and vegetables, combined with exercise?

I'm not sure how eating what you want for five days is going to contribute to lower cholesterol levels or make people healthier.

Nutritionists have rightly dismissed this diet as the answer to the country's obesity woes, and have pointed out some risks with it.

I wonder what fad diet will pop up next.

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES

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