Back to the NHS again; bless their little cotton socks. A few points for trying – and many points off for doing it badly. This time, it’s on the subject of puddings (desserts).
Puddings are a social construct. At worst they should be a very occasional treat and, at best, just ignored. That probably won’t happen any time soon, but you and your children can come around to ‘occasional treat’.
The NHS, instead of giving good ideas for what to eat/do instead of tucking into a pud, gives some touchingly sweet ideas, but is either just plain ignorant on matters nutrious, or is so afraid of being seen to control or is afraid to go against Big Food, they don’t mention leaving puds out… and they do give some bad alternatives along with their few good ones.
— Puddings/desserts should not be encouraged as anything other than a very occasional treat.
— The ‘alternatives’ list just gives more sugars! Of course the sugars aren’t ‘free’ as in added, but the body doesn’t know that. All the grain-based suggestions they make add just serve to sugar to the diet – they all break down into glucose.
— Non calorific sweeteners are not only unhealthy, they trick the body into thinking it’s eaten sugar… and then you get hungry because the calories haven’t arrived (the chemistry is explained in my forthcoming book).
— Low fat – arrrgh! They are assuming all sorts of wrong things here, not least that fat is bad for you. True – some are, but not because they are inherently fattening:
++ Saturated fats are good for you (they supply vitamins A, D, E and K and are an essential part of cell membrane structure)
++ Saturated fat consumption does not raise cholesterol… and cholesterol does not cause heart attacks anyway
++ Polyunsaturated vegetable oils (such as sunflower oil) consumed in the quantities touted by the government cause body inflammation, with all sorts of negative knock-on effects
++ The transfats made by hydrogenating oils to make them solid are harmful to health; this at least is admitted by the government… but we don’t have an outright ban on them. Overheating polyunsaturated vegetable oils turns them into nasty trans fats too
++ All sources of fats/oils have a mix of saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids in them, just in different proportions
Here is the original Change4Life PDF for you to view and scoff at. I think it’s reprehensible it’s even online. (This is the same government who wail about grammar standards, but see fit not to include capital letters at the beginning of the sentences – presumably in an effort to appear trendy with youngsters.)
Swap ideas pic by NHS.
Chocolate desert pic by Janine