08 April 2009

More new studies show that Food Standards Agency is wrong

Following my post about the Food Standards Agency demonstration of ignorance about what constitutes a healthy diet, several studies have been published which support my side against them - which is nice!

I've put them on the NEWS section with comments as appropriate.

I must look out for more as I have now attacked both the Food Standards Agency and Unilever's cashing in with their SatFatNav ads on TV where they demonise good, natural, healthy butter as a 'bad' fat and then promote Flora and the other spreads they make which are rich in carcinogenic linoleic acid as 'good' fats.

I have complained to the Advertising Standards Athority about both Unilever and the FSA, as I feel that if I complained directly to the FSA and Unilever, they are not bound to do anything about my complaint. The ASA are. I'll keep you posted.


Chris said...

I'll look forward to hearing how they respond

brainpower said...

Great work, Barry and high time someone challenged these FatHeads. More power to your pen and elbow!

Ashley said...


I just want to say thank you for writing Trick and Treat. I am a public health educator and epidemiologist. HOWEVER, I discovered the truth about "healthy eating" several years ago when I was trying to heal myself of a prescription drug-induced illness. For the past 5 years, I've been studying and giving talks about everything you cover in your book, right down to the fluoride and soy issues.

Several of my friends have told me I need to write a book. Well, if I were going to write on, Trick and Treat would be IT!!! Thanks to your beautiful piece of work, I don't have to write it. :)

I want to buy a copy for one of my professors (I'm going to school to become a Naturopathic Physician). He *thinks* he knows everything about nutrition, but I cringe as I listen to his misinformed lectures.

Keep up the good work!!!

Suzie said...

Great stuff Barry, I am also in the process writing a complaint to the ASA regarding the satfatnav campaign.

I will be highlighting the negative effects of plant sterols such as those used in Flora Pro Activ to 'lower cholesterol' on the body's endocrine functions especially in children and pregnant/breastfeeding women. Hence the disclaimer on the back of the Flora pack 'not suitable for young children and pregnant or breastfeeding women'.

I will aslo be referring to the effect of oxidized plant sterols on the body's absorption of vitamins A and D, hence why they are added to the Flora product along with all the rubbish that is included, including unnamed vegetable oils which indicates that they use whichever vegetable is readily available and cheap. This is identified in their ingredients list (water, vegetable oils (contains sunflower oil) etc etc) so it is not all sunflower oil as the general public are mislead to believe.


Suzie said...

Here is a useful journal article regarding plant sterols added as a functional benefit to food products.



Barry Groves said...

Hi all

Thanks again for your support. I'll let you know how things go.

University is the best place for debate, but some professors don't like students who know more than they do. Be careful; don't jeopardise your chances.

That's a great paper in Eur Hrt J. I had not noticed it. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. I feel an article coming on - against 'heart healthy' phytosterol-laced margarines, which aren't healthy for the heart.

Best of luck with your complaint to ASA. The more complaints, the merrier!

Anonymous said...

Good work Barry.

The FSA are a "piece of work" as the Americans say, and deserve to be shown up. As far as I can see, their propaganda hasn't even kept up with mainstream medical opinion, let alone the slightly left-field approach of e.g. the THINCS community.

They appear to (deliberately?) confuse the issues of saturated fats with hydrogenated and transfats.

I've tried writing to the FSA in the past and just get stonewalled.

Maybe the ASA will shake them up.

Mike E.

Alex said...

I and some others have already complained to the ASA about the FSAs anti-sat fat advertising and got the usual platitudes in response. I hope you have better luck!

Suzie said...

Hi Barry

I have had a response from the FSA, it is very long (looks quite standard) but I can send it to your email address.

thanks Suzie

Tatiana said...

Hi Barry

I don't know whether you or anyone else caught the programme last night on BBC 2 called Professor Regan's Diet Clinic. It proved absolutely nothing at all, and yet the narrator said that her 'findings' had been subjected to rigorous science! Maybe I fell asleep and missed something.... She looked at 'crash' diets and seemd to include low carbing (Atkins) as one. She met with Susan Jebb (aaah)to have her body fat measured (very little) which didn't really tell us anything apart from Dr Jebb churning out the usual stuff about calories. She checked out low fat mayonnaise and didn't seem to think that there was anything wrong in the low-fat stuff complete with it's additives - all she said was that it was best to check that low-fat products didn't contain more calories than normal products. There was a bit about vitamins and diet pills and then to end the programme she discovered that cooked carrots release more beta carotene during digestion than raw carrots which seemd to lead to the conclusion that processed food was just as good for us as fresh! Oh and I nearly forgot apparently the 'Mediterranean' diet is low in so called 'bad' fats -never mind what they really eat there!
It seems to me that it was just more propaganda for the food industry and the anti fat brigade, trouble is most people watch it and believe it.


Barry Groves said...

Hi Susie

Yes, I would like to see the letter you received. So far I have had four from different people. Three were identical; the other was different - and actually included references. My e-mail address is groves@second-opinions.co.uk

Incidentally, I am still waiting for a reply to my complaint to the ASA.


No, I didn't see the programme. I meant to record it as I would be out and forgot to set up the video! So, many thanks for your excellent synopsis.

It seems I didn't miss anything worth watching; but that's what I have come to expect from the BBC and ITV. Channel 4 seems not to be so hamstrung - which is surprising as it is government funded.

I know what you mean about Susan Jebb. She recently was honoured with an OBE for her work (of making people ill IMO), while I and others are left to rescue them from the 'health industry'.

Suzie said...

Hi Barry

Did you receive the email, I sent it on Friday?

Here is a great study to review, and it is extremely recent, you may have already seen it.

'A systematic review of the evidence supporting a causal link between dietary factors and CHD' as published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.


Thanks Suzie

Trinkwasser said...

Excellent paper from Suzie!



came up with this which makes the connection between blood glucose and cardiovascular disease rather nicely, also check out the paper I referenced from Mark Sissons for a connection between A1c and cardiovascular disease in nondiabetics

Barry Groves said...

Hi SuzieDo you mean the letter I answered above. or have I missed one? And apologies for spelling your name wrongly.

TrinkvasserAll this is widely known and recognised - except, it seems, by those who work for the FSA.

JennyGreat take on this diabetes paper. I like your blog.

By the way, I still haven't had a replya from ASA.


Suzie said...

Hi Barry

I have just emailed it to you, it was the reponse from the FSA following my complaint.

Thanks Suzie

Barry Groves said...

Hi Suzie

I haven't received anything. Unfortunately, sending e-mails via the blog doesn't work. Please send it again to groves@second-opinions.co.uk



Suzie said...

Hi Barry

I have sent it again, if it doesn't work I could either post it on the blog (although it is quite long) or I can post it to you.

Thanks Suzie

Barry Groves said...

Hi all

At last my complaint to the ASA has been decided. And they have decided not to uphold it. No real surprise there, but I am a little disappointed. It seems that the Food Standards Agency's pronouncements carry more weight than published clinical and epidemiological evidence.

Anyway, you can see what I mean at www.second-opinions.co.uk/complaint-to-asa-about-unilever-advert.html>. I have put my case and their reply online.