Is plant-based food the way of the future?
A change in dietary habits could prove to be beneficial for you and your neighbour in light of what the BBC uncovered this year. When Dutch chicken eggs were found to have insecticides within some egg products, like sandwich fillings for example. These contaminated eggs could cause adverse effects on your kidneys; liver and thyroid glands.
Scrambled egg any one?….
This is yet another food scandal not so long after the horse meat affair. Millions of consumers were misled and inadvertently ate horses rather than the desired beef. This involved a number of UK Supermarket chains being forced to initiate a series of product recalls which threw the spotlight on British food supply chains. Health experts called this food fraud. I call it deliberate disregard to consumer choice and quality.
Where is the quality control?
These recent incidents raise concerns about the competency of the regulators to ensure that we are eating what it says on the label. Even the red tops found space to print it……
Even if it is what it says on the tin, is it good for your body though?
I’ve been involved recently with some academic research regarding the meat and dairy industry/food and their effects on our bodies and the environment. Although, I don’t discuss environmental impacts here, there will be more insightful articles to follow. Watch this space……
The research introduced me to some very interesting culture shocks and even raised an internal conflict. That cognitive dissonance forces you to see the world in a completely different way. I began to appreciate the world around me in a way I wasn’t accustomed to. Probably the most controversial change, was finding out that animal products are said to be bad for you.
Luckily in Peterborough & Cambridgshire, the NHS and HealthyPeterborough.org.uk are promoting a reduction in the consumption of; dairy, red and processed meat This is due to the illnesses associated and the rise in health care costs required to treat conditions such as: bowel (colorectal) cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity, to name a few. Summer time BBQs don’t look so hot now…..
Red and processed meats include: hot dogs, ham, sausages, corned beef, bacon, gammon, pepperoni, pork, lamb chops, beef-steak, chorizo and canned meats. 70 grams is the advised maximum daily amount. Anything above this number and you are significantly increasing your risk to the above conditions. 70 grams is approximately two thin slices of beef or lamb.
So much for a mixed grill! A meal where you are literally risking your life.
As a result, some consumers (and I) are taking up more of a plant-based diet.
Is this the healthier option?
Recent scientific studies have shown that it is animal protein which is linked to detrimental effects on human health.
But I thought animal protein was good for you?
These investigations exposed correlations to ill health regardless of the animal or food type. Even cow’s milk increases your risk to cancer. Plant-based proteins, however, have been found to reduce the cancer-causing effect and (the good news keeps coming) our levels of cholesterol too.
Dining out need not be so life threatening any more for Peterborians, as we will soon have our very own VEGAN restaurant, and many existing outlets now provide vegan options to the health-conscious consumer too.
Peterborough City Council and the NHS are taking the essential need for a healthy diet extremely seriously.
The website http://www.healthypeterborough.org.uk has been setup to inform and advise of best food and lifestyle practices.
If you would like to know more about the benefits of plant-based diets or the illnesses associated to animal protein, the following links offer more detail.