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Book Ends

Date: 19 December 2013, Zana Morris

 

Death, danger, protein and cigarettes - how to read the paper without being put off your food.

 

High protein diet as dangerous as smoking "Too much meat and cheese in your middle age is a recipe for early death." "Does that chicken breast equal a cigarette?" "People under 65 who eat animal proteins are 4 times more likely to die." "Dairy products are also dangerous." Are we were suffering from a rash of tabloid journalism more than from an actual health emergency? Just look at the language being used in the latest nutrition free-for-all. And coming from what were once our broadsheet newspapers - all very dramatic, these scare tactic headlines. 

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It takes a moment, even when you work in the nutrition and fitness industry, to take a step back and apply some due diligence to an article that relies on shock value instead of rigorous background research. I'm the first one who is endlessly fascinated by new discoveries; it would be arrogant to think we've sussed it all out and there's nothing else to learn. Sometimes the price of progress means we will discover that we have been wrong about something. We will have to take the good news with the bad as science advances forward, as humans always have done. But can we not sell newspapers without spreading unnecessary panic?

 

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