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Clean Eating Dirty Secrets… Explained

2 weeks ago the BBC aired a programme called ‘Clean Eating Dirty Secrets’ by Grace Victory. Grace is awesome and has tons of followers on social media and promotes herself as the internets big sister, she is all about body confidence (we all need more of that).

This blog post are my opinions on the documentary and to myth bust some of the questions raised.


Are these health bloggers trained?

This is an issue which worries me too, a lot of the health bloggers aren’t trained. Madeleine Shaw and Deliciously Ella are currently studying at CNM where I graduated from. Most health bloggers have a story and a journey where changing their diet changed their lives and thats awesome. They are great for books and food inspiration (especially on Insta) but just because they recovered from that specific diet, doesn’t mean you will too.

Voucher to be a Nutritionalist for £29 + only 20 hours of study…

OK this winds me up no end. These are available on the internet and it is scary! You can wake up tomorrow and call yourself a Nutritionalist with NO QUALIFICATIONS. When you are working with a Nutritional Therapist, ask where they studied, and only work with someone who is accredited with BANT. I went to CNM (College of Naturopathic Medicine) for 3 years where we had both lectures and hands on experience whilst being assessed. I am registered with BANT. Only certain qualifications allow you to be registered with BANT and those are the people you want to look for and trust. If your Nutritionalist did a 6 month online course? Well have a think about that…

Is ‘healthy food’ expensive?

Real food is more expensive than junk food. FACT. I’m not going to argue that point. However, junk processed food may make you sick and down the line you may suffer. Whole foods, fruits, veg, meats, fish, rice, nuts and seeds are the foods we were designed to eat. And I dispute it is that much more expensive. I cook bulk meals (stew or a casserole) and freeze the leftovers, it doesn’t have to be pricey. Grace was in a very expensive health food shop, we don’t need bee pollen everyday or quinoa bread everyday, yes that is pricey but if you eat real food, it isn’t too bad at all. Invest in your health and your families health now, or you may pay later.

Calcium from milk – a dieticians opinion…

So this discussion came about from Deliciously Ella saying we don’t need milk and the dietician saying we do for bone density. Absolutely, we need calcium for bone density and milk does contain calcium… as well as pus and antibiotics. Other foods higher in calcium than milk are your leafy greens, spinach, cabbage, kale etc (with no added antibiotics) I would choose those everyday over milk.

Whats the difference between a Nutritional Therapist and a Dietician? 

I get this question a lot, a dietician works for the NHS and they are the people who you may have been referred to from your GP. In my experience the two work very differently. NT focus more on the whole person, it is a type of Functional Medicine meaning we are looking for the root cause of the problem. We are wanting optimal health. We also work more holistically but we are science based. We have access to very in depth testing and the best quality supplements. In my opinion… dieticians take a more NHS view of health and that just wasn’t for me *DISCLAIMER – the NHS is amazing, it was set up for people to have babies and to help those with broken bones but they don’t have the budget to help everyone, sometimes in order to find optimal health we need to look elsewhere*.

Grace filmed a segment, quite emotional saying she felt awful on a plant based diet…

I felt bad for Grace here, she was trying really hard and had gone fully onto a plant based diet. She felt awful and was quite teary… I can bet her body was heavily detoxing. When we switch so suddenly from a western diet to a plant based diet (removing gluten, dairy, additives etc.) our body starts to detox and it takes some time for it to get used to these new foods. I would have recommended she did it abit slower and did it for longer, and I bet she would of come out the other side feeling better.

I can absolutely see how many food disorders come out of this ‘healthy eating trend’ who knows what to do for the best?

Nutrition is very personal, it is very difficult to advocate a ‘this diet is great for everyone’ some people thrive on a vegan diet, personally I know I wouldn’t, my body works well on small amounts of good quality meat and fish. Some people are great low carb, some need more fat, we could go on and on. My advice is everyone with an interest in health and wellbeing should work with a FULLY TRAINED, BANT REGISTERED Nutritional Therapist to find the best diet for them. We all have different goals, some want to loose abit of weight, some want to get rid of that stubborn bloating, some have pre existing conditions, therefore each food plan would be very different.

Orthorexia… 

I eat clean. I am gluten free. I avoid dairy (mainly). I eat organic. I also… drink Prosecco and my favourite thing to do is go to my favourite cafe for a gf chocolate brownie just not everyday! I live by the 80/20 rule. If you have been 80% good, treat yourself, we are all human, nobody is perfect. It is very sad that these illnesses are becoming more and more common, I think we are bombarded from every angle and like being thin like fashion models, we feel a need to conform food wise.

Gluten – a dieticians opinion…

“…gluten is like sandpaper for the gut…” – Madeleine Shaw

“…gluten breaks down the villi in the small intestine…” – The Helmsley Sisters

Some people are coeliac yes, these people need to be 100% gluten free. Agreed. However, the dietician on the programme was claiming we have been eating gluten for thousands of years, yes agreed. But our gluten isn’t the same as thousands of years ago, heck is isn’t the same as 50 years ago. You imagine luscious wheat fields, no crops being sprayed, once harvested they end up in the local bakery where you would buy it fresh everyday… Well now it is sprayed with all sorts, and the average branded loaf in the supermarket with a week long shelf life has an average of 5 E numbers… so lets think this through people. Gluten isn’t gluten anymore and it absolutely damages our gut even if we aren’t coeliac.

At the end of the day, thanks to health bloggers people are waking up to the importance of food, they are learning how to cook, we are slowly switching to better eating patterns. I think the health blogger bubble may burst one day but I think as a society we should expect to see more health cafes, more farmers markets, and a bigger call for quality meats and fish.

But I own Madeleine Shaw books + Deliciously Ella books, I follow them all on Instagram, they are doing great work, they are inspiring people to eat better and helping them on that journey.

I don’t think healthy eating should be ‘trendy’ I think it should be normal. For everyone.


P.S I don’t recommend you do a ‘potato cleanse’

 
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