How to Spot Nutri-Nonsense

*Nutrib***ocks- a term coined by Dr Joshua Wolrich meaning ‘spurious nutrition advice with little to no scientific evidence frequently used on social media to make a profit; promotes disordered eating.

The internet is full of health information, so widely available making it confusing and hard to distinguish the truth from the total and utter nonsense. So along with some nutrition helpers, I’m starting a series of posts looking at some of the top “nutri-nonsense”. Thanks to @ellen

QUALIFIED? Make sure the person you are taking advice from and believing is qualified! Be savvy about the qualifications, there are not nutrition courses that can be completed in 3 hours or others that take a minimum of 3 years. 

QUESTIONS – It’s totally okay to question things and ask for the evidence behind claims and advice. Anyone who knows their stuff will be more than happy to tell you where the guidelines or advice we are giving you comes from.

RESEARCH – What research is being quoted?  Problems arise when unqualified individuals give out advice because often it’s totally unfounded and not backed up by credible science. Quoting a one off study is not the same as being able to interpret the results of the study and knowing the evidence base.

SPECIALISM – Is the person who is giving out advice qualified within the field which they are commenting on? Those who know their expertise will only offer help in the areas they have spent time studying and will refer onto others when needed.. 

AGREEMENT – Are a persons views and advice in agreement with the NHS, government guidelines and others in their field? Usually, if someone has a view that is really different from most of the other people in that industry or that goes against the evidence-base we have, it’s safe to say steer well and truly clear of it, this is a red flag. That said nutrition is a new science so new things are constantly being discovered.

CONSISTENCY – Are they consistent within themselves/are their views extreme? If someone is promoting a different diet each week and everything they say seems to revolve around this, then it is promoting unhealthy relationships with a focus on diet.

REMEMBER – If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. When the latest diet trend or detox product is all singing and all dancing, promising fast weight loss and amazing results in a short amount of time you should see red flags. If there was a quick-fix-magic-pill to weight loss, health and longevity all rolled into one, nutritionists, dietitians and health professionals wouldn’t be hiding it from you.

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