Back Catalogue (1-100)

Our Back Catalogue (1-100)

Salt and cardio-vascular disease: Policy and Science clash (19/Mar/17) - Salt recommendations - way out of step with the science Continue reading
Aloe vera plants – why every home should have one (14/Mar/17) - Aloe vera is the number one treatment for first and second degree burns. Easy to grow - a must have plant for every home. Continue reading
Salt vs sodium measurements (12/Mar/17) - Confusing sodium and salt measurements - it happens to the best of us. Continue reading
Cardiologist attacks diet dogma at 2017 Symposium (3/Mar/17) - MUST WATCH - Cardiologist Dr Salim Yusuf presents findings from the PURE study which challenge fat, carb, meat, salt and 5-a-day dogma Continue reading
February News Round-Up (1/Mar/17) - Arsenic, asthma, bison, sleep, coeliac, mercury, chocolate, PPIs, BPA, mammoths - We join the dots - PLUS: Mummy Mouse and Baby Mouse special Continue reading
Kids eat sugar. But no one knows how much. Apparently. (28/Feb/17) - A lack of standardisation in the units of measurement of sugar are putting our kids' health at risk. Or is it just me? Continue reading
Whole grains? Not a health food say these researchers (19/Feb/17) - In the conclusion to their study examining the links between cardiovascular disease (CVD) and food consumption across 42 European countries, Pavel Grasgruber et al. make this bang-on-the-money statement about the propaganda surrounding so-called “heart healthy whole grains”: A very important case is that of cereals because whole grain … Continue reading
Fish n Chips a l’Afifah (16/Feb/17) - It’s Friday tomorrow. Are you thinking fish and chips? This is my version. None of those reheated, oxidised seed oils and wheat batter here! Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon fillet (Waitrose) Organic peas with samphire (Waitrose) Broccoli with grilled sheep’s cheese (Parlick Fell, Sainsbury) Chips … Continue reading
Why aren’t hospitals doing their detective work? (13/Feb/17) - I was talking to a doctor today about a seriously ill patient who I am keeping close tabs on, but whose medical condition is still unclear. His comments about the hospital were very telling. Here is the gist of the … Continue reading
Acrylamide – is it really a risk? (11/Feb/17) - Acrylamide is a potentially cancer causing compound produced when starches are browned during cooking. As reported in our Jan 2017 News Round Up concern about dietary acrylamide has led the Food Standards Agency to recommend the public ‘go for gold’ – avoiding medium and … Continue reading
The idea behind our short posts (10/Feb/17) - When I started this blog a few year’s back I had intended to write fairly informally about my clinical experience and share interesting medical and nutrition studies I was reading. In the event together with my husband Keir, we ended up writing more … Continue reading
Gluten – what we learned in 2016 (part 2) – the Great Imitator (7/Feb/17) - In part 2 of our gluten update we look at 20+ conditions that were linked to gluten in 2016. Essential reading for understanding this multifaceted toxin. Continue reading
2017 January News Round-Up (4/Feb/17) - Had enough of experts? Judge their latest pontifications for yourself: chopping boards, statins, roast potatoes, high fat diets and metabolic syndrome, eggs and brain health. Continue reading
Gluten – what we learned in 2016 (part 1) (22/Jan/17) - A summary of key developments in our understanding of grain related disorders. Continue reading
December News Round-Up (1/Jan/17) - HAPPY NEW YEAR! This month's nutrition news is shoe-horned into a Christmas theme, and it's just about bursting at the seams with festive good news! Continue reading
My Grain-Free Christmas Dinner (27/Dec/16) - Our traditional Christmas dinner worked exceptionally well this year, and included roast turkey with all the trimmings. Continue reading
Grain-Free Christmas Pudding (18/Dec/16) - It's the traditional pud gone paleo. Soaked fruit, almonds and honey make this rich Christmas bomb go with a bang. Continue reading
The three wise herbalists brought… Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh (13/Dec/16) - Let's take a look at three herbs brought from the East, valued for their broad therapeutic use. Continue reading
Heart disease trials: Low-fat diet fails. Nuts and olive oil succeed. (10/Dec/16) - Two of the largest intervention trials ever undertaken demonstrate that nuts and olive oil beat low fat diets when it comes to heart disease prevention. Continue reading
Featured news site: NewsMedical.Net (7/Dec/16) - A useful site packed with thousands of health articles, news and medical science. Here are 7 interesting stories I found. Continue reading
November News Round-Up (3/Dec/16) - Parkinson's may start in the gut. Your calf muscle may stop you losing weight (!) Plus coffee, aspartame, vitamin D, high-fat running and the importance of cooking. Continue reading
Keto Bounty Bars (28/Nov/16) - Coconut filled chocolate sweet-meats that are suitable for ketogenic diets. Continue reading
WSHOMS Nov 5th 2016 (19/Nov/16) - 1) How Graylingwell Hospital near Chichester West Sussex served war wounded during WW1 2) Why Malta was known as the 'Hospital Island' Continue reading
WSHOMS Dec 5th 2015 (19/Nov/16) - (1) The incredible history of plastic and cosmetic surgery that was initially mastered in ancient India (2) Toulouse Lautrec and his Muse, Jane Avril Continue reading
Orange & almond cake (5/Nov/16) - This delicious sponge is light, moist and very tasty, made with whole whizzed boiled oranges. Citrus pizzazz! Continue reading
October News Round-Up (31/Oct/16) - Lots of interesting items that are in the news this month inc 8 on vitamin D! Continue reading
5 everyday ancestral foods with proven health benefits (25/Oct/16) - Our ancestors developed complex methods for turning inedible seeds, leaves and fruit into nutritional powerhouses. Five of them made it into modern life. Continue reading
Hold fire on the Sea Bass recipe! (Retraction and Apology) (15/Oct/16) - Breaking news: Scientists say Wild Sea Bass stocks are dangerously low. DO NOT EAT SEA BASS - use one of these sustainable alternatives Continue reading
Stuffed (Farmed) Sea Bass (13/Oct/16) - A delicious baked dish using wholesome ingredients that bring out the best in this fish. Continue reading
Red light phototherapy (3/3): Hair regrowth, Pain reduction, Wound healing and Practical applications (9/Oct/16) - In part 3 we look at NASAs original work on red light and pain reduction, recent discoveries about wound healing, and finish with a range of simple things you can do to benefit from red-light at home. Continue reading
September News Round-Up (1/Oct/16) - Full fat cheese good for heart health, Pharmaceuticals in our water supply, Body clock and cancer, Meat and fish in pregnancy protect infant from eczema. Continue reading
The Waterside Ape on BBC Radio 4 (30/Sep/16) - Listen Again: an excellent introduction into controversial theory that humans evolved in riverside / shoreline environments. Continue reading
Male fertility ~ a fishy business (14/Sep/16) - The 20th century saw a huge decline in male fertility, and a huge increase in omega 6 oil consumption. Are the two connected? We fish out the latest research on seafood for semen. Continue reading
Red light phototherapy (2/3): Brain, Muscles and Eyes (10/Sep/16) - Red light stimulates mitochondrial function. We look at the accumulating evidence that phototherapy can improve brain function in Alzheimer's, schizophrenia and Parkinson's. Plus red light enhances muscle endurance and a has major role in eye health. Continue reading
August News Round-Up (2/Sep/16) - We serve up a plate of top nutrition news, and finish with a knickerbocker-glory of articles from our guest publication: New Scientist magazine. Continue reading
Red light phototherapy (1/3): The Skin (25/Aug/16) - Research is uncovering a huge range of beneficial effects of red light. In part 1 I look at the remarkable protective effects of red light on the skin. Continue reading
July News Round-Up (3/Aug/16) - Sleep and health: inflammation and ‘intestinal jet-lag’ The Mail (6th July) explains why ‘Too little and too much sleep is as damaging to your health’. Dr Irwin concluded: ‘Together with diet and physical activity, sleep health represents a third component … Continue reading
Spiced-up nuts, four ways to make your own super-snacks (11/Jul/16) - Four ideas to jazz up your nuts: Cashews with lemon and black pepper, Tamari 5-spiced mixed nuts, Curried macadamias & Balsamic pecans Continue reading
Natty ceramic egg holders -review (5/Jul/16) - These stylish egg trays are a great way to keep eggs right on your counter top, displaying them in all their eggy glory! Continue reading
June news roundup (2/Jul/16) - Toxins in food linked to autism; emulsifiers & artificial sweeteners in obesity; Coffee good for liver; Butter off the hook; Dr Mosley sees the light; Gluten psychosis; Dangers of vitamin pills Continue reading
The Microbiome on BBC Radio 4 (2/Jul/16) - Listen again to these two excellent radio broadcasts from BBC Food Programme on the micobiome. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED Continue reading
Why the EU is bad for herbs, supplements and vegetable seeds (18/Jun/16) - Four EU directives that target natural products reveal the influence of big business in limiting competition and consumer choice. Continue reading
May News Round-Up (1/Jun/16) - Nutrition controversies: high blood pressure linked to potatoes, salt exonerated, low-carb diets for diabetes challenged. Medical errors: a leading cause of death Continue reading
Study: dairy, not plant based diets is the best way to feed the planet (14/May/16) - New Zealand farm analysis finds that mixed dairy/cropping systems feed the greatest number of people. Protein considerations prove pivotal. Continue reading
April News Round-Up (2/May/16) - Latest research on Vitamin D, fructose and paleo diet. Bone broth, pastured livestock and mis-shapen veggies. Fermented foods: good for gut diversity. Continue reading
Vegetable oils losing their halo (14/Apr/16) - Just published: A US research group has recovered raw data from a large scale study from the 1970's and finds no evidence for benefits from switching butter for vegetable oils. Continue reading
“The sugar conspiracy” – recommended read (7/Apr/16) - A rollicking read about how for decades nutritional science ignored the dangers of sugar whilst needlessly demonising saturated fat. Continue reading
March News Round-Up (2/Apr/16) - Health benefits of rosemary, blueberries, coffee and organic eggs. Vegetarian populations at increased cancer risk from vegetable oils. Calls to extend sugar tax. Fish recipes. Continue reading
Curly kale crisps (27/Mar/16) - Kale. Yes. I know. It's got a little halo, but it's... well, dull. DON'T DESPAIR! This recipe actually makes it worth eating. Continue reading
Behind a healthy eating quiz – Australia’s nutritional mafia (6/Mar/16) - Why was a healthy lifestyle quiz in the Independent quietly linked to an Australian government funded researcher? We dig into the murky world of nutrition politics. Continue reading
February News Round-Up (28/Feb/16) - Government announces eggs are safe (phew!) even emu eggs (?) Plus the ketogenic diet in cancer, seafood in APOE4 Alzheimer's and vitamin D in prostate cancer. Continue reading
Processed food, obesity and flagella (15/Feb/16) - Food additives and obesity, flagellated bacteria and TLR5... Where will the amazing human microbiome take us next? Continue reading
Lamb shanks with celeriac mash (6/Feb/16) - One of the best cuts of lamb. A dramatic, succulent centrepiece for an English roast dinner. Continue reading
January News Round-Up (30/Jan/16) - A host of new year diet stories - low fat v high fat; saturated fat v sugar; factors affecting the microbiome; nightshade foods Continue reading
UK vegetarians DON’T live longer than meat eaters study finds (18/Jan/16) - The Oxford EPIC study finds that vegans and meat eaters have similar all cause mortality. No evidence that red meat causes bowel cancer. Continue reading
Cinnamon coconut macaroons (9/Jan/16) - These little tea-time cakes have a lovely crumbly texture. Grain-free and low in carbs. Who wouldn't like them? Continue reading
Call for reviews and testimonials (2/Jan/16) - I am currently seeking feedback / reviews / testimonials. Please click here to add yours Continue reading
December News Round-Up (2/Jan/16) - Out with the old, in with the new. Quote of the year. A cheesy joke. Salt and the dietary recommendations golem. Continue reading
Real mince meat pies (22/Dec/15) - The real deal. An update on the traditional 17th century minced pie, with real minced beef (!) in a chestnut and almond shortbread case. Continue reading
Coffee – its light and dark side (20/Dec/15) - How much coffee is good for you? Regular coffee consumption is associated with a longer, healthier life, but there are a couple of important caveats. Continue reading
A quick tour of my clinic (6/Dec/15) - I have just finished giving my consulting room a make-over. May I show you around?. Continue reading
WSHoMSoc 2015 lecture Nov 21st (5/Dec/15) - (1) Dr Albert Carpenter: public health measures in the 19th century (2) The life of Sir Henry Wellcome Continue reading
WSHoMSoc 2015 lecture Nov 7th (5/Dec/15) - Unsung heroes of the First World War: Nurses and Stretcher Bearers Continue reading
November News Round-Up (30/Nov/15) - Gluten-free diet helps healthy volunteers; Pastured meat for conservation; Ketogenic diet; Vitamin D; Meat and cancer 'false alarm' Continue reading
Right Royal Rashers – we rate the best bacon buys ★★★★★ (29/Nov/15) - We review and compare three of the best supermarket bacon buys: Pancetta, Air dried or Organic. Which will get five stars? Continue reading
Omega-6 and Omega-3 PUFAs: Five recent research papers (11/Nov/15) - Are you getting enough omega 3 PUFAs? or are you blowing out on omega 6's? We discuss five of the latest papers that show why it matters. Continue reading
WSHoMSoc 2015 lecture Oct 24th (7/Nov/15) - Dr Helen Bynum: Tuberculous Lives from Smollet to Orwell & Dr William Bynum: Darwin & the Doctors Continue reading
October News Round-Up (2/Nov/15) - Raw milk safe; Grass-fed beef best; Ethical seafood increases; Artificial light upsets genes; Mediterranean diet benefits; Cutting sugar improves health fast; Red meat & cancer Continue reading
Why no one should eat grains. Part 3: Ten more reasons to avoid wheat (30/Oct/15) - Beyond coeliac disease and NCGS – we look at the many ways that wheat can affect everyone. Includes new groundbreaking research. Continue reading
Rewilded Knepp bavette steak with leak, onion and fries (22/Oct/15) - Not just any old bavette steak, but Knepp's finest free-living rewilded pasture-fed longhorn steaks. PLUS video of the Knepp cattle. Continue reading
More Evidence William Davis Was Right: Wheat Does Increase Obesity According to New Study (12/Oct/15) - SCOOP: new trial demonstrates that gluten increases weight gain via suppression of thermogenesis Continue reading
September News Round-Up (1/Oct/15) - Knepp rewilding project in the news, and their beef is now available to order. Plus... Fish reduces depressions, apple skins prevent age related muscle loss (!?) and sugar wars hot up. Continue reading
GUEST POST from Miki Ben-Dor: “Big brains needed carbs” (???) (28/Sep/15) - Miki Ben-Dor from Tel Aviv University brings his expertise of paleo-anthropology to bear on the question of whether cooked starches drove human evolution. Continue reading
Did cooked tubers drive human evolution? (26/Sep/15) - Recent claims that starchy tubers drove human brain evolution are put under the microscope. Studies of the Hadza suggest otherwise. Continue reading
Grain-free ‘breaded’ cod with parsley sauce (20/Sep/15) - A quick, easy & presentable recipe. A good alternative to battered or breaded fish. Continue reading
“Scientists claim Paleo diet is nonsense” is nonsense (19/Sep/15) - Did our brains evolve on a high-carb diet of spuds? or are the newspapers turning our heads to mash? We respond to misleading headlines. Continue reading
August News Round-Up (31/Aug/15) - Gluten-free junk food on NHS; Jamie Oliver calls for sugar tax; Butter better than margarine; Fish oils for schizophrenia; Vit-D and MS Continue reading
Why no one should eat grains. Part 2 – The definitive guide to Non Coeliac Gluten Sensitivity (27/Aug/15) - A detailed examination of the current science on this recently recognised gluten pathology. Includes new videos from world class researchers. Continue reading
Goodwood Wins Cheese Award (13/Aug/15) - Goodwood gain 'Best Organic Cheese' and a gold medal for their organic Charlton Farmhouse cheese. Continue reading
July News Round-Up (30/Jul/15) - Cod stocks recover. Iodine deficiency in pregnancy. Cauliflower rice. Sugar - the public health debate. Continue reading
Seafood, Sex and Evolution (3 videos) (24/Jul/15) - Watch our recent public talk on the role of seafood in brain health, evolution and female sexiness. (Three videos) Continue reading
Ray Wings with Sauteed Summer Vegetables (20/Jul/15) - A lovely fish with a delicate flavour - easy to cook and easy to eat. A light treat for summer with a medley of vegetables. Continue reading
Summer Berry Jellies (3/Jul/15) - Easy to make and classy - low sugar versions of traditional English deserts, including fruit and cream jellies and blancmanges. Continue reading
Summer Talk: “Seafood’s place in the human diet” – VIDEO NOW AVAILABLE (1/Jul/15) - Don't worry if you missed this wonderful evening - we have now released videos of this amazing presentation - see post below. Continue reading
June news roundup (30/Jun/15) - Trans-fat ban. Berries for obesity. Diet at conception alters genes for life. Antibiotics cause obesity. Paleo recipes. Zero carb. Continue reading
VIDEO: Harvard Scientist Supports U-Turn on Dietary Fats (26/Jun/15) - It looks like 40 years of advice to limit fat consumption to less than 30% of calories has been quietly retired! A Harvard scientist explains why it's a good move. Continue reading
Why no one should eat grains. Part 1 – The tip of the Iceberg (23/Jun/15) - Understand coeliac disease and you will know why eating gluten is playing Russian roulette with your health. Continue reading
10 low-carb breakfast ideas (17/Jun/15) - A bunch of brekkies to get you going that will banish the munchies 'til lunchies... :-) Continue reading
The chemical warfare on your plate (7/Jun/15) - The fascinating story of how natural insecticides in plants can be good for us, but how wheat has evolved the ability to turn an insect's immune system against itself... oh, and us. Continue reading
May News Round-Up (31/May/15) - Vitamin D deficiency in sunny climes, Dark chocolate helps weight loss, Salt does not raise BP Continue reading
Baked lemon cheese cake (27/May/15) - A versatile low-carb baked cheesecake recipe with a grain-free base. Continue reading
Adventures in mushroomland (7/May/15) - A wide range of exotic mushrooms is now available in UK supermarkets, but which are the best? Continue reading
Upcoming one day conference: B12 & Thyroid Disease – May 16th (3/May/15) - Four great speakers will explain the importance of vitamin B12 in health and question the Medical establishment's intransigence on this critical subject. Continue reading
April News Round-Up (29/Apr/15) - Cheese keeps French hearts healthy; Eggs reduce diabetes risk; lack of sun in UK kids; Organic farming sequesters carbon Continue reading
Sleep & Health: part 1 – Sleep’s central role (26/Apr/15) - Why sleep quality is one of the most significant health factors within your control. Continue reading
Why April 15th is D-Day in the south of England (12/Apr/15) - To get your vitamin D levels up you need to get out in the sun at the right time of day. Continue reading
Afifah in the kitchen with eggs and a mixing bowl Workshop 30th April: Cooking for Reduced Autoimmunity (10/Apr/15) - Recipes, cooking demos, food tasting and ideas for anti-inflammatory and low immunogenic diets. Continue reading
Grain free bread soldiers dipping in a boiled egg Keto bread (1/Apr/15) - WOW! A grain-free white loaf so you can have soldiers with your boiled egg on Easter Sunday. (Phew - Just in the nick of time!) Continue reading
March News Round-Up (31/Mar/15) - Herbal Medicine under threat; BBC make good on sugar documentary; Eat fat get thin. Continue reading
The Balanced Diet Argument – Just Another Straw Man (30/Mar/15) - Why paleo, primal and gluten-free diets are actually re-balancing British nutrition. Continue reading


 

 

Recent Posts

Salt and cardio-vascular disease: Policy and Science clash

The recent video we posted of Dr SalimYusuf’s PURE study had a section on sodium intake, where he showed that the lowest risk of cardiovascular events, cardiovascular deaths and all-cause mortality was associated with an intake between 3000 and 6000 mg of sodium per day (equivalent to 7 to 15g salt per day). The current US average sodium intake is 3800 mg placing the general population nicely within this sweet spot, although towards the lower end.

Current US and UK dietary recommendations recommend an upper limit at 2300mg of sodium (6g of salt) whilst cardiovascular recommendations by bodies such as the American Heart Association aim to reduce sodium intake to 1500 mg per day (approx 3.75 g salt). If the PURE study is right (and it is not alone in questioning the current guidelines), then these aspirations would do more harm than good.

How did such discrepancy arise? The problem may be the use of surrogate markers. The thinking goes like this: Salt raises blood pressure. Raised blood pressure increases CVD risk, so salt increases CVD risk. This kind of thinking was evident in 2011 when the American Heart Association (AHA) called for salt targets to be reduced to 1500mg per day.At the time MedPage Today explained:

The evidence linking salt intake with blood pressure — and the major adverse outcomes of heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease — is “impressive,”…

That evidence includes more than 50 trials assessing the blood pressure effects of salt, as well as a meta-analysis showing that cutting salt intake by about 1,800 mg per day lowered blood pressure by 5 mm Hg systolic and 2.7 mm Hg diastolic.

This is a “critically important public health issue,” according to Appel and colleagues, and this AHA advisory must be considered “a call to action.”

On the basis of this ‘A leads to B leads to C, therefore A leads to C’ thinking initiatives were instigated all round the world to reduce public consumption of salt. A task force of concerned scientists even formed a lobby group to put pressure on food manufacturers, which successfully led to reductions in added salt in manufactured foods.

However, within a short time of the AHA call to action reports started coming in contradicting this advice.

Over this period it is clear that scientists were becoming more and more irritated with the dogmatic approach of the AHA and government bodies, and by the last article were publicly calling the AHA anti-scientific!

Despite all of the research questioning the validity of further salt reduction US and UK policy remains stubbornly wedded to the ‘less is best trajectory’. In their 2016 survey the UK government reported proudly that average sodium consumption fell from 3500mg in 2005 to 3200 mg in 2014.

Their report claimed “Too much salt in the diet can raise blood pressure which increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. A reduction in average salt intake from 8g to 6g per day is estimated to prevent over 8000 premature deaths each year and save the NHS over £570million annually.”

Yet contrary evidence from studies including PURE would suggest that this is not simply futile but probably harmful. You would think that with the swathe of research challenging the low salt dogma that public policy would be questioning the wisdom of further reductions. Not a bit of it. Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at Public Health England, makes no bones about it:

Our analysis makes clear that there is a steady downward trend in salt consumption. While people are having less salt than 10 years ago, we are still eating a third more than we should.

Many manufacturers and retailers have significantly reduced the salt levels in everyday foods. However, more needs to be done, especially by restaurants, cafes and takeaways.

The intransigence of health policy makers leads researchers to exasperation and despair. As one writer put it:

…the ‘salt hypothesis’ is rather like a monster from a 1950s B movie. Every time you attack it with evidence it simply shrugs it off and grows even stronger. – Malcolm Kendrick

In an interview with MedPage today researchers who found that patients with heart failure who ate more salt did better than those who ate less made the following statement which we have published before, but is such a gem it deserves another outing:

“We have had no basis for any of our recommendations regarding sodium restriction during the past 50 years, although these recommendations have changed a great deal (for no good reason). After this report, we still have no basis for any of our recommendations regarding sodium restriction. We were ignorant before; we are not any smarter now. Did we really need this report to tell us that we lack evidence for our recommendations regarding dietary sodium in patients with heart failure?”
Milton Packer, Professor in the Division of Cardiology, UT Southwestern

Further reading:

  1. Aloe vera plants – why every home should have one 2 Replies
  2. Salt vs sodium measurements Leave a reply
  3. Cardiologist attacks diet dogma at 2017 Symposium 1 Reply
  4. February News Round-Up Leave a reply
  5. Kids eat sugar. But no one knows how much. Apparently. 2 Replies
  6. Whole grains? Not a health food say these researchers Leave a reply
  7. Fish n Chips a l’Afifah 2 Replies