It’s the time of the year for seemingly endless TV Programmes and News Articles about food, dieting, fitness, alcohol, health, obesity and the science behind all of these, now I’m no expert or scientist but I thought it might be interesting to do a little news roundup, so here goes, please get in touch and let us know your thoughts. Chris

Secret of healthy ageing discovered in ground-breaking 35-year study - The Telegraph - PLEASE READ THIS ARTICLE IN FULL
Chris: If you only go and read one article in this roundup please make it is this one, if you don’t have the time this one paragraph below says it all:
“In 1979, 2,500 men were asked to follow five simple rules – eat well, work out, drink less, keep their weight down and never smoke.
Nearly four decades on, just 25 pensioners have managed to stick to the plan. But they are all far fitter and healthier than the volunteers who gave up.
Those who stuck to the plan have dramatically cut their risk of cancer, diabetes, heart-attack, stroke and dementia.”

Can changing your mealtimes make you healthier? BBC News App
What happened when Michael Mosley altered not what he ate, but when he ate?

Chris: If you’re work/life balance allows or can be changed, eat as early and as little as you can in the evening. If you do have to make some poor food choices, make them at breakfast time because your body can deal with it better in the morning.

Channel 4 Food Unwrapped - Diet Special – Channel 4 Mon 4 Jan

Chris: You’ve got to love catch up TV, really interesting programme, especially seeing the cacao bean (pronounced “kakow”) being harvested and prepared. Chocolate is such an emotive and “essential” part of modern life, Sharon and I love to use cacao where a taste of chocolate is required. So full of flavonoids and goodness it almost jumps up and hits you with the healthy stick. If you need a little present for someone special, check out Hotel Chocolat’s St Lucia as recommended on the show………… Update on the St Lucia, it’s very bitter and not a treat at all, Sharon was not impressed! We’ll be sticking to 60% – 70% dark chocolate in the future.

The sugarless sponge cake puzzled me a bit, they could have used coconut sugar, though I suppose that wouldn’t make interesting tv, I love coconut sugar in my coffee, and its low GI so you don’t get the “sugar spike”, looks like I’m going to have to try making a sponge cake with it and try it out!

Trust Me, I’m a Doctor Series 4: Episode 1 - BBC 2 06/01/2016

Chris: Protein shakes/protein supplements, an industry worth £7 billion worldwide. Thanks to some painful looking injections and sample taking he proved that the protein in the protein shakes does go quickly and in greater quantities to the muscles that have been “damaged” by exercise. But the conclusion is that if you have a healthy balanced diet then the protein already in your diet is all you need and you simply don’t need to pay for protein shakes.

Chris: The antioxidant properties of supermarket smoothie drinks where put to the test. The conclusion was again that the extra antioxidants in the smoothies weren’t needed and that the body can produce its own in direct response to the free radicals as long as you eat a healthy diet with a mix of fruit and vegetables.

Chris: What’s is the best time for men and women to eat, before or after exercise?
We are all slightly different but men burn carbs better and the ladies are better at burning fat, and we all continue to burn carbs/fat for hours after exercise. All of the tests were done first thing in the morning (also my preferred time to exercise) but the conclusion was that men should eat after exercise and ladies should eat before exercise.

Chris: Interesting to note that the test participants all said that they felt better, slept better and were livelier after exercising regularly.

What I’ve learned about diets: punishing your body is not taking care of it
Chris: Lindy West sums her article up very well, though I’m not sure how your health can’t be important to you:

“I don’t mean that you shouldn’t strive for health in 2016, if health is what’s important to you. But a number on a scale is not health. A dress size is not health. Work with your body, not against it. This isn’t some radical tenet of fat-acceptance either – any life coach, self-help guru, or even personal trainer will tell you the same: set reachable goals. Don’t set yourself up for failure.”


M&S gets the knives out for ‘simple white bread’ - The Guardian
Chris: The key point here is not the bread but the main constituent parts of the flour, white flour is processed to remove two key parts of wheat, the bran (outer layers) and the germ (the innermost part) leaving only the endosperm (the starchy bit in between the other two. When you compare white bread to whole wheat bread, whole wheat is much higher in fibre, vitamins B6 and E, magnesium, zinc, folic acid and chromium. So if you must eat “traditional” bread then please at least choose whole wheat or have a look at our bread recipes ( ) we both love our sunshine bread ( )

#eatclean in 2016? No. Let’s eat black pudding – The Guardian
Chris: Well, the blood element in black pudding is full of iron, blood is also high in natural salt and electrolytes, so if you choose a good quality black pudding containing oatmeal and pearl barley etc, don’t deep fat fry it and as with everything eat sensibly then hey, go for it. Some interesting recipes at the end of the article.

Extreme KEN diet uses tube in nose and forces body into starvation mode – The Independent
Chris: I’m completely with this lady: Sian Porter, a spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association said that the diet was “shocking”

6 simple ways to try sirt foods – The Independent
Chris: Wow, how much? “a plan costs £1,475 for seven days,” though I do like the list of simple ways to add sirt into your diet with green tea, apples, parsley, blueberries, strawberries and dark chocolate (there’s the dark chocolate again).