Thought for Food Blog

If sugar is so bad for us, why is the sugar in fruit OK?

Posted by Shira Rossiter

20-Mar-2018 11:30:00

This post was originally published on The Conversation, and was written by Kacie Dickinson, an accredited practising dietitian and lecturer in Nutrition and Dietetics at Flinders University, alongside Jodi Bernstein, a PHD candidate in Nutritional Sciences, from the University of Toronto.


We hear regularly from health organisations and experts that we should eat less sugar. But we’re also told we should eat more fruit.

All types of sugar will give us the same amount of calories, whether they are from fruit or soft drink. But the health risks of eating sugar are related to consuming too many “free sugars” in the diet, not from eating sugars that are naturally present in fruits or milk.

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Topics: cancer, nutrition, healthy eating, monosaccharides, diabetes, nutrients, fruit, vegetables, obesity, fibre, dairy, cardiovascular health, water, sugar and substitutes, food research, confectionery, dieting, health, appetite and satiety

Super Taster vs. Non Taster: Does it Matter for Your Health?

Posted by Shira Rossiter

25-Jan-2018 13:47:53

A salty pretzel, a sweet ice cream cone, a sour, vinegary pickle: most of us relish the variety of flavours we experience when we eat, courtesy of our sense of taste. What many don't know, however, is that the experience of taste is highly amplified for some members of the population, known as "supertasters." This may sound amazing, but supertasters actually tend to avoid certain foods due to their increased sensitivity to strong flavours, including anything bitter and many healthy fruits and vegetables. On the other hand, individuals known as "non-tasters" have significantly decreased sensitivity to flavour, making it difficult for them to taste food at all. Unfortunately, this can cause problems, such as when they cannot detect when food has spoilt or is unsafe to eat. 

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Topics: food safety, cancer, nutrition, saturated fat, flavour, sensory perception, salt, healthy eating, spices, fruit, vegetables, obesity, alcohol, food research, health, appetite and satiety

Why go dairy free?

Posted by Chris Cattini

17-Nov-2016 10:07:08

Consumption of dairy products in the UK has declined by 30% over the last 20 years. Americans drink 37% less milk now than they did in the seventies. Milk alternatives, on the other hand, are becoming increasingly popular. So why is this happening?

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Topics: milk and milk substitutes, labelling, sleep, cancer, animal welfare, nutrition, allergies and allergens, intolerances, nutrients, obesity, dairy, cardiovascular health, nuts, tryptophan, calcium, gut health, child nutrition, health

Dieting: is it Really Worth the Sacrifice?

Posted by Chris Cattini

04-Feb-2016 14:22:21

Christmas is a distant memory. For some of us, the annual mission undertaken by chocolate, mince pies, brandy butter and yule log to convert themselves into excess body fat has been a success. Once again we find ourselves in post-yuletide gloom, with weight to lose and fitness to gain.

We all know that New Year resolutions are made to be broken. As the fireworks break out and we blow up what is definitely our last supersized bag of crisps of the season with a salty bang, it’s all too easy to go online and sign up to membership of the local gym. It’s also not that difficult to declare that alcohol will not touch our lips for the foreseeable future and filling up our supermarket trolleys with healthy stuff, including items disregarded in the approach to Christmas (and possibly at most other times of the year too), such as celery and low fat cottage cheese, requires little in the way of moral fibre when we’re still feeling bloated and slightly nauseous due to our recent excesses.

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Topics: omega-3, cancer, protein, cholesterol, diabetes, nutrients, obesity, cardiovascular health, carbohydrates, dieting, appetite and satiety, metabolism

Reducing Meat Consumption for Sustainability

Posted by Naomi McGrath

05-May-2015 16:30:00

What changes could we make to “meat” the need for more sustainable food choices?

Meat often dominates the dinner plate. Whether it’s a juicy steak, a roast on a Sunday, or some sizzling sausages served up with a mountain of mash, meat regularly forms the central part of the meal, and for many people it is something they would certainly not want to go without. Unfortunately, though, while our enthusiasm for digging into meat-filled meals might leave our stomachs satisfied, it is having rather less positive consequences for the environment.

Meat production and the environment

Meat production is one of the main sources of human pressure on the environment, and its consumption accounts for a significant proportion of the ecological footprint of those who eat it. As well as being a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions (it is claimed that the global livestock industry generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all the cars, trains, ships and planes put together), raising animals for food is inefficient. It requires vast areas of land – not just for grazing, but for growing crops for feeds too, as well as large amounts of energy and water, all to produce only a relatively small amount of meat.

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Topics: food security, cancer, animal welfare, protein, diabetes, grains, obesity, agriculture, meat, cardiovascular health, food production, environment and sustainability, consumer behaviour, plant-based diets

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