Fad diets were the focus of an interactive event at Fieldhead in Wakefield on Thursday 15 June held in celebration of Dietitians’ Week.
Dietitians’ Week (12 – 16 June 2017) is an annual campaign organised by the British Dietetic Association to raise awareness of the value of the profession.
This year’s theme of ‘evidence and expertise’ highlighted the dangers faced by the public who can be drawn into unsafe nutritional habits and practices. On Thursday, dietitians chatted to service users, staff and visitors in the canteen to debunk food myths, emphasise the risks of fad diets and where to find reliable nutrition information on social media.
Emily Lam RD, registered dietitian, said: “There are many confusing message in the media about so called ‘good’ and ‘bad’ foods. Dietitians are the experts that can provide nutrition advice, based on sound analysis of scientific evidence. Dietitians are the only regulated nutrition professionals in the UK.”
Many people are attracted to fad diets to help them lose weight quickly, however many of these diets are often promoted with little evidence to support claims. Fad diets can be very restrictive and may result in someone becoming short of specific nutrients, which can be harmful to health. Restrictive diets are often hard to follow, short-lived and can result in a cycle of overeating and dieting.
Manvir Soor RD, registered dietitian, said: “Remember to be careful of any diets that seem too good to be true and claim to cure illnesses or help you lose weight quickly. Dietitians strongly support the importance of following dietary advice that is both evidence-based and from an appropriately qualified nutrition expert such as a registered dietitian, who you can identify by the ‘RD’ after their name.”