One thing I’ve learnt over the many years of Personal Training, reading reams of material and going on many courses/seminars/ conferences, is that you never take things for face value. Question everything.
It’s a good premise to start from. Research advances, new methods and ideas are found and developed, and old ideas debunked.
As much as we like to compartmentalise everything into black and white, there’s generally a much bigger, unclear, grey area. This is also a very transient state – ever changing/developing.
One classic concept of this is the food pyramid. It is at the heart of many ‘healthy’ eating guidelines from many well established, highly acclaimed organisations and societies.
The basic premise of this is that we should apportion a bigger % of eating plate to firstly carbohydrates foods – rice, pasta, potato, then a medium amount of protein -fish, meat, etc and then a small amount on fats – oily fish, nuts, seeds etc.
Well, in short, it was found that previous research had been skewed to highlight fat as the culprit for obesity and bad health, and put sugar less so. There was also some suggestion also that fruits and vegetable sales needed a boost too.
Aside from a hugely increased chemical ‘shitstorm’ cocktail being added to the food chain since this time, obesity has now reached epidemic proportions.
Something has got worse, much worse, in the last 40 years. We could blame change in lifestyle, less general movement, stress and insulin resistance but, again from research, its suggested that food manipulation has a huge impact on overall wellness, health and improved body composition.
So whilst modern advances have helped improve some areas of health generally we are getting sicker as a nation. If you want to look at it from a pessimist viewpoint, again from what I’ve read, then you would believe that where there’s illness and sickness, there’s money.
So is the new research suggesting eating less carbohydrates, having moderate protein and eating higher levels of fats the way everyone should go?
No. What suits some might not suit others. It’s all about finding what suits you as an individual and then making a judgement- as frustrating as that is.
Some organizations are starting to change their eating and health guidelines others are slow on the take up.
So not only question everything, but also believe that if it sounds to good to be true it generally is!!
(Oh, and who funded the initial food pyramid guidelines research? – The sugar council) 😉