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Fashion diets health warning

Fashion diets health warning

Women who follow “fashionable” diets may be putting their health at risk, warn doctors.

Food elimination diets, advocated by pop stars such as Geri Halliwell, involve cutting out certain types of food because they believe they are either “intolerant” or allergic to them.

GP Dr Sarah Brewer said: “There is no doubt that some people feel eating certain foods improves certain symptoms, but women need to be educated about the risks involved with faddy diets.

“If they feel the need to eliminate foods from their diets for more than a week or so, it is important to seek advice from a qualified dietician or nutritionist.

“Unregistered nutritionists are often ill informed and patients should be cautious of any advice they offer.”

Have you diagnosed your own food intolerances? Why do you think women self diagnose rather than see their doctor? Why do you think our bodies might be becoming less tolerant of food groups over time?

Whilst there are genuine intolerances, affecting people with IBS and other conditions, and the widespread use of additives and synthetic or GM foods must have an effect on our diet that was not felt years ago, I feel that nowadays it is fashionable to declare that one has an allergy or intolerance to some food or other. In the US it is lactose; here, it is wheat. Were we intolerant to these things before the possibility was brought to our attention? Maybe we should watch the quality of what we eat in general, rather than being concerned about faddy intolerances.

Nan, I have diagnosed my own food intolerances and have chosen to drastically reduce any form of sugar (not just cane sugar, but fructose and lactose and maltose, etc.) for two reasons. The first is that it helps me to lose or maintain weight loss. The second is that my emotions are more balanced without the intake of sugar.

However, I “self diagnosed” a wheat intolerance. After suffering multiple allergies for most of my life, using shots, pills, and avoidance techniques, I found relief by avoiding wheat. Specialists seem extremely free in labelling stomach/intestine/colon complaints as irritable bowel syndrome and therefore appear unable to cure the symptoms which can vary extremely. When you go through so much discomfort one’s own logic tells you to eliminate the foods you feel are aggravating it. I have cut out pasta, white bread, and soya and this has eased the pain. It is not a cure, but due to the lack of understanding the consultants have shown me, it’s a case of get on and deal with it yourself. This is not a case of vanity, but a case of quality of life.

Women self diagnose because they have lots of information already and feel it’s a waste of a day to wait long periods of time in boring offices. Bodies are becoming less tolerant because women don’t have a boyfriend or husband who loves cooking with real natural ingredients.

Ann Jolly,

USA, currently in Spain

Doctors are only interested in prescribing antidepressants and HRT if you are a female in your forties. I have suffered for six years of extreme exhaustion, continuous swollen glands and infections, weight gain and have struggled to get out of bed some days. Three months ago I eliminated wheat and cut down on dairy products and within a week my swollen glands had gone down. I have been more energised, even to the point of getting another job. So doctors need to look at their own practices before criticising their patients who feel desperate and get no help from them.

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