‘Irresponsible’ dietary guidance under flak

By Rick Pendrous

- Last updated on GMT

Dietary guidance from National Obesity Forum is attacked

Related tags: Public health, Nutrition

A report from the National Obesity Forum (NOF) in association with Public Health Collaboration has come under flak from Public Health England (PHE), Food Standards Scotland (FSS) and the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) for providing bad nutritional advice.

The NOF report calls for an urgent overhaul of current dietary guidelines, which it blames for driving up obesity and type 2 diabetes.

It directly contradicts widely accepted nutritional advice about people’s diets. It also makes the egregious assertion that: “Science has also been corrupted by commercial interests.”

However, PHE, FSS and BNF have come out with vigorous rebuttals of the report’s findings. PHE’s chief nutritionist Alison Tedstone said: “In the face of all the evidence, calling for people to eat more fat, cut out carbs and ignore calories is irresponsible.”

Based on slim evidence

She claimed the NOF report’s findings were based on slim evidence and much opinion, which contrasted with the rigorous internationally accepted studies assessed by bodies, such as the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition, which are used to inform public health dietary advice.

Similarly, PHE’s Eatwell Guide has also been defended by both PHE and FSS, having come under attack by health campaigners.

FSS said consumers should use the guide to build a healthy diet, rather than rely on a range of studies that often say one thing one week, and the complete opposite the next.

The BNF stated: “The ideas put forward in this opinion piece are contrary to the advice of health organisations around the world.”

The serious consequence of this new report from health lobby groups is that consumers will have even more reason to doubt what scientists tell them in future.

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2 comments

NOF is correct

Posted by Corinne Jones,

NOF is correct and not irresponsible. Fats are critical to proper brain, skin, heart, and other biological functions. People do not need to count calories when eating high protein and high fat diets, because proper fat and protein consumption will trigger a natural response to stop eating when the body has had enough calories. Current recommendations of carbs are excessive intake amounts that disrupt the body's natural cues to stop eating. However, the effects of obesity arising from high-carb consumption is good business, and benefits big industry which sells high-carb products and the health system that treats the diseases that arise from it such as type II diabetes and heart disease. Unfortunately, there aren't enough protein and fat sources available to feed an entire world population should the public begin demanding more of the high-fat, high-protein foods that could make them live longer and with better health, thus officials have to keep the charade that high carbs are better nutrition. Eventually, the NOF recommendation will be proven, but I am very sad for the people that could have turned around the course of their health now by following the NOF recommendations because of the opposition whose interests really lie elsewhere.

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...and Slimming Clubs need regulating..

Posted by Mariola Swift,

Slimming World is the biggest weight-reduction group in the country taking £4M each week and yet it is not regulated and advocates a regime which excludes bread (beyond two small slices a day) and yet champions unlimited amounts of rice and pasta.This is mumbo jumbo and cannot work!

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