Women have tried 61 diets by age of 45

In a poll of 2,000 British men and women, more than three-quarters had embarked on a diet in the past year. Photo / ThinkStock
In a poll of 2,000 British men and women, more than three-quarters had embarked on a diet in the past year. Photo / ThinkStock

Whether it's salad, cabbage soup or low carbohydrates, women have tried every slimming trick in the book.

In fact, the average 45-year-old British woman has been on 61 diets, a UK survey has found.

Few of them would appear to have had the desired effect, however, as from the age of 16 that equates to around two a year.

In a poll of 2,000 British men and women, more than three-quarters had embarked on a diet in the past year. But women had tried the biggest array of eating plans to try to shift the pounds.

There are fears that fad diets are rubbing off on the next generation, causing potential future health problems.

Six out of ten people surveyed said they had been asked by their children not to give them foods such as bread, potatoes and fruit, believing they are bad for them, when they are healthy as part of a balanced diet. Around half of parents did remove some of these foods from their children's diet.

More than 85 per cent of those surveyed on behalf of the bread company Warburtons said they did not know calcium was important to their diet and around half did not know calcium was found in white bread.

In particular, those aged under 26 didn't realise the importance of calcium although the mineral - found in dairy products, leafy vegetables and fish as well as bread - helps grow and maintain bones which carrying on developing until around 30.

The recommended daily allowance of calcium for adults is around 700mg, with up to 1,000mg for women over 40 who are at increased risk of osteoporosis, and pregnant women.

TV doctor Hilary Jones said: 'An average of 61 diets over an adult lifetime could mean an awful lot of people have cut a significant amount of calcium out of their diet over the years especially if they've been avoiding calcium-rich food groups on a regular basis.

'It seems the British obsession with dieting could be having a detrimental effect on our nutritional intake, as many people lose sight of what constitutes a healthy balanced diet. All breads contribute a range of essential nutrients from protein and calcium to iron and B group vitamins.'

- DAILY MAIL

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