Wartime waistlines: Win obesity battle ‘by enforcing WWII rationing’

Rationing your food intake like in ‘wartime’ is the best way to stay healthy and avoid cardiovascular disease, according to a Manchester nutritionist expert.

Numerous media sources recently rubbished guidelines from the 1980’s that told millions of people to avoid saturated fat –  such as butter and cheese –  which could potentially set a dangerous precedent.

Haleh Moravej, senior lecturer in nutritional sciences at Manchester Metropolitan University, believes that eating in moderation is the best way to avoid health problems such as cardiovascular disease.  

She told MM: “Rationing is the way forward!

“Look at the olden times – the time when Britain was the healthiest. We didn’t have an obesity issue during world war two when people were rationing.

“People were having butter and cakes, but in moderation.”

It is currently recommended that 30% of your overall energy intake should be fat – with no specific guideline on the amount of saturated fats.

The nutritionist felt that the media had failed to grasp this important point.

“At the moment we don’t have any research saying the recommended levels of saturated fat,” she said.

“There are no guidelines, and the media have misunderstood what this paper is. We should be very careful before we start having unlimited amounts of butter and cream and lard.

“The current recommendation is a match-boxed size of butter per day. If you’re having more than that for breakfast – it’s not healthy. You also shouldn’t eat more than one takeaway per week.”

The nutritionist believes that health guidelines should be reviewed every 20 years, and that new guidance could be released in the near future.

She added: “I think in the next five years we will see new guidelines and maybe better understanding of what fat does to our body.

“For 20 years they’ve been saying, fat is bad for us. Now we’re saying it’s the carbohydrate and we should cut that out because it’s the sugar and refined sugars that are bad for us.

“One of the reasons why fat is in the spotlight, is because it’s the only macronutrient that doesn’t affect insulin levels. With carbohydrates, it affects your insulin.

“We should take a step back and look at the quality of our food, have less processed food and have a balanced diet rather than having one or the other in excessive amounts.”

Image courtesy of John Gargan, with thanks. 

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