fbpx

🍑 Does 5 a day REALLY keep the doctor away?

Hey! – Rob here 👋🏼

 

Your Daily Health Fix today is about … 

The ‘Eat your Fruit and Veg’ Mantra

Common Myth:

You’ve heard it a million times – EAT YOUR 5 A DAY (of fruit and vegetables). This policy has been adopted round the world in various iterations (5+2 a day in Australia, 9 per day in the USA etc.) 

 

This mantra proliferated far and wide, even to the point that Doctors and Nutritionists are guiding patients to adopting this dietary habit – but did anyone actually stop and ask if there was any evidence to support such schemes?

 

 

How did it start:

The “five-a-day” recommendation for fruit and vegetable consumption started in 1991 as a public-private partnership between the National Cancer Institute and the Produce for Better Health Foundation. The program was a marketing campaign rather than as a result of scientific research. It aimed to increase fruit and vegetable consumption without a clear goal. 

 

The sponsors of the Produce for Better Health Foundation stand to benefit from increased consumption of fruits and vegetables, yet the program still spread worldwide despite that there is no scientific evidence to support the recommendation. Unsurprisingly, other produce marketers were also quick to jump on the band wagon.

 

The campaign was successful in increasing the awareness and consumption of fruits and vegetables, but hasn’t had any positive impact on obesity rates, rates of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, dementia, or more generally on health spans or all cause mortality. 

 

 

What the research shows:

After years of hearing the various versions of the ‘eat more fruit and veg’ mantra’s, here’s some fun facts that may surprise you:-

 

1. NO PROTECTIVE EFFECTS AGAINST CANCER HAVE BEEN ESTABLISHED FROM FRUIT & VEG CONSUMPTION

 

2. FRUITS AND VEGETABLES CANNOT PROVIDE US WITH VITAMIN A (retinol), VITAMINS D, B12 or K2, (all necessary for optimal health)

 

3. INTAKE OF FRUITS AND VEGETABLES IS ASSOCIATED WITH LOWERED CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE – BUT NOT CAUSAL

 

3. POPULATIONS WHERE INDIVIDUAL CONSUMPTION OF MEAT IS HIGHEST ALSO SEE GREATEST LIFE EXPECTANCY

 

5. ADHERENCE TO A CARNIVORE (MEAT ONLY DIET) HAS BEEN SEEN TO IMPROVE OR RESOLVE MULTIPLE CHRONIC ILLNESSES.

 

 

TL;DR – Consumption of fruit and veg tends to correlate with better health outcomes as people that have other healthy habits (such as regular exercise, good sleep, no smoking, limited alcohol and processed food) also consume more fruit and veg – BUT, the evidence suggesting that fruit and veg are contributory to improved health is at best weak, but arguably doesn’t exist. [see references below]

 

Check out Zoe Harcombe’s excellent article for a more detailed break down of the history, misinformation campaigns, and statistical analysis of the research, and a deep dive into the nutrition in relation to the 5 a Day Fruit and Veg Campaign

 

 

What should I do?

 

Question everything – Because in the nutrition space, so many of the health claims widely believed are thought up by marketing departments, not measured by scientists.

 

Cut out processed food – Not only because they are designed to be highly palatable and addictive, but because they cause havoc with our endocrine (hormonal) system, especially with regard to digestion and metabolism of energy.

 

Use animal fats for cooking – As well as being as a good source of stable energy, they are rich in the fat soluble vitamins (A,D,E,K2) that fruits and vegetables cant provide. 

 

Increase protein consumption – Because calories from protein promote satiety, at the same time as providing your body with the building blocks for tissue development and repair, and fuel for enzymatic processes.

 

Reduce carb consumption – Sugar intoxication leads to diabetes and hormone disruption – also contributing to excess body fat.

 

Preference the parts of plants that are least toxic – eat the parts of the plant (like the seasonal fruits) that nature intended. Without it’s leaves or roots, plants die, which is why they contain the most problematic compounds for human consumption.

 

DOWNLOAD The Health Fix’s Simple Guide to Clean Eating (FREE)

. . . That’s it for this dose,

 

Until the next time – Stay Motivated!💪🏼

 

Rob

 

P.S. If you’re enjoying these updates and they are helping you, please support me and The Health Fix by buying me a coffee ☕️

The ‘Your Daily Health Fix’ post or email does not constitute individual medical or health advice or guidance. Always do your own research and consult directly with a professional. 

 

These post are intended to be informative, educational and entertaining. Often bold claims may be made or strong opinions offered. These statements may be contrary to popular convention or commonly disseminated narratives. It is our intention to keep these publications brief, so sometimes references or links may be excluded. We will not make any claim or give generalised conclusions or guidance that cannot be substantiated with scientific research or other forms of evidence.

 

Read our terms of service here

SEND ME MY HEALTH FIX!

We’ll keep you updated with all the best tips, guidance, science, knowledge and techniques – helping you to maximise your fitness and optimize your health.

The Health Fix Logo

SCHEDULE A COACHING CALL . . .

Use the booking widget below to select the date and time that is most convenient for you.

If you have an issue with the booking widget or are unsure which scheduling option might be best, contact us here and we’ll be glad to assist.

The Health Fix Logo

SCHEDULE A COACHING CALL . . .

Use the booking widget below to select the date and time that is most convenient for you.

If you have an issue with the booking widget or are unsure which scheduling option might be best, contact us here and we’ll be glad to assist.

ARE YOU IN?

Subscribe to The Health Fix to receive the best of our nutritional guidance, fitness techniques, research reviews, news & updates – direct to your inbox for FREE!!

All you need to help you achieve and maintain optimal health!!