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The modern lifestyle has resulted in the general population polluting their body, mind and planet – and our natural environment provides all the solutions we seek elsewhere.

In addition to weight management, more of us are changing diet for new reasons; reduction or elimination of meat and gluten, environmental impact and ethical concerns. Science has confirmed the food we consume is the cause of most diseases.

Almost two thirds of British adults are on a diet “most of the time”.  The survey of more than 2,000 UK adults, conducted by retail analysts Mintel, uncovered that almost half (48%) of Brits have tried to lose weight in the last year.  That figure rose to 57% when researchers just looked at the results for women. Of those who have tried to lose weight, almost two thirds (64%) said they do so “all or most of the time”.

Time, Wealth and Health (Jay Shetty)

Despite this, a quarter of those who’ve tried to lose weight in the past year admit they don’t know how many calories they consume on a typical day. Despite official guidelines recommending that women consume 2,000 calories per day and men consume 2,500 calories per day in order to maintain their weight, the research revealed a major disparity between this advice and consumer eating habits.

Of UK women, one third (33%) said they don’t know how many calories they consume in a typical day. For those that do, one quarter (24%) said they consume between 1,500-1,999 calories and 31% said they typically consume more than 2,000 calories in a day.

The same trend was seen among UK men, with 42% saying they don’t know how many calories they consume on a typical day. Indeed, just 22% agreed they consume between 2,000 and 2,500 calories a day, while one in five (21%) said they consume more than 2,500 calories.

It is no secret that people today ingest far too much sugar. Modern adults should not be consuming more than 30g of added sugars per day and should ensure that less than 5 per cent of daily intake consists of these ‘free’ sugars.

At present, many populations see sugar accounting for over 20% of calorie intake, four times more than the recommended limit.  It’s not just sugary foods like sweets and chocolate – sugar has made its way into practically everything we eat.  It’s not just sugar that’s effecting health, but scientifically manufactured “sugar” as well. In 1822, Americans were consuming 45 grams of sugar every five days, or the amount of sugar in a can of coke.

By 2012, this had dramatically increased with Americans consuming 756 grams of sugar every five days, or 130 pounds a year. People unwittingly consume more than they realise because so many everyday processed foods, from cereals and bread to pasta sauce and soups, contain sugar.  Even ‘Low-fat’ and ‘diet’ foods often contain extra sugar to help improve their taste and palatability and to add bulk and texture.

The body thinks refined sugar is poison.  Sugar has no nutritional value and lacks any essential proteins, minerals and vitamins. There are two types of sugars in our diet; naturally occurring sugars and added sugars. The reason that added sugar is arguably the most toxic ingredient in the Western diet, is because it has harmful effects on metabolism and contributes to the development of numerous serious health conditions and diseases.

Too much sugar promotes inflammation and disease and a recent study revealed evidence linking sugar consumption to breast cancer. Sugar consumption is also a major risk factor for the development of other health conditions such as obesity and heart disease.

Another symptom of this is diabetes. In 2013 it was estimated that over 382 million people throughout the world had diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is complex, but research does suggest that eating too many sweetened foods affects type 2 diabetes risk.

Diabetes affects how the body uses blood glucose, commonly called blood sugar. Glucose is the brain’s main source of fuel and provides critical energy for the cells. If you have diabetes, it means that eating too many carbohydrates can spike blood sugar, leading to health issues.

The problem (Dr. Vandana Shiva)

The Solution (Dr. Rajen Manicka)

Surge in Vegan only diet

According to a new survey by comparethemarket.com there has been a significant spike in the number of people going vegan in the UK since 2016, with more than 3.5 million British people now identifying as such. The research means that seven per cent of Great Britain’s population are now shunning animal products altogether.

The statistics show a substantial increase since those published by The Vegan Society and Vegan Life magazine in 2016, which revealed there were roughly 540,000 vegans over the age of 15 living in Britain.

Supported by Gresham College professor Carolyn Roberts, the research suggests that environmental concerns are largely responsible for edging people towards a vegan diet, as people strive to reduce their carbon footprint.  Prof Roberts believes that a shift in diet might even be more environmentally beneficial than other eco-friendly measures, such as reducing petrol and diesel car usage.