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Nutrition


Diets and Human Species
(on miraculous...diets)

  
 If you open a newspaper or a magazine – they are sure to contain a recipe or a diet; the television and radio are “swarming” with this kind of rules – everybody (seldom the physicians) instruct us how and what to eat; the internet is “chocked up” with pieces of advice...diets...dietary supplements.

 Against the background of this „din“, we all witness from time to time the „appearance” of a „new“ diet. There is no question that this new diet („the wonder working“ diet) is the key to success: you will lose weight without effort, you will be healthier, you will save money, and most importantly – you will be able to eat as much as you wish! Just like in a beautiful tale – in which, at the end, the Good fairy enjoys herself at a huge feast alongside the entire people. Sometimes there are several conditions attached to the diet – you have to buy some powders, drugs, miraculous drops at a considerable price! (I will deal with this subject in a future article).

What are these diets „basedon“?
Do they really bringf orward novelideas?
What is their outcome?

  After an empirical analysis of some of the „wonder diets“ – I found out that all of them are based mainly on the following elements:
 - around 70% of the actual diet is based on medical knowledge, that is medical prescriptions validated with the passing of time and at the same time a proof of „common sense“;
 - 10% of the diet is, let’s call it, „the novelty“: sometimes they are medical hypotheses, more or less controversial and insufficiently studied; other times they cannot even be called hypotheses; this is usually the component that provides the diet with the attribute „wonder“ – for instance I choose a random name (so as not to upset anyone): dietdependent onshoesize!
 - the rest of about 20% has nothing to do with the diet itself and it is nothing else but presentation, show, advertising or whatever you want to call it, and it depends a great deal on promotion and the media trusts (newspapers, television channels and radio).
 
   What is the overall effect of these diets?   Insignificant!
  And when I say this I bear in mind the statistics carried out at a global level - obesity and sedentariness have reached alarming proportions both in the United States and in Europe .

 But if there are obviously no effects at a global level, what drives people to keep track of and talk about these „wonder“ diets? I think we are dealing here with one of mankind’s „attributes“ (without however generalizing) – we want only ready-made things, achieved with no effort or, if there is any amount of effort involved, let somebody else take it (the medicine, the supplement, the masseur, the sports teacher etc.) but not us! We mustn’t forget the motivation – we are all in search of (yet) another motive for going on / continuing such a diet, because somewhere in our subconscious we know that we do not want restrictions. And, in addition to this, the show (“the piece of bread and the circus”) really “appeals” to us!

 If you examine carefully the previous paragraph, you will find the answer to the question: “why do physicians get but rarely results in recommending a particular diet and a lifestyle”? Simply because health care providers acquaint the patient only with the validated part of the medical knowledge (i.e. those 70%), information so frequently repeated that it has turned into a “banality”!

 And on top of this – it is precisely these trivialities” which make up the essence – I mean, if these were to be abided by, a terrific amount of mankind’s personal and global nutritional issues would be solved.

 What do these “wonder” diets manage to achieve? Show, some profit, turning valuable information into a matter of trifling importance (if you talk too much about something – then nobody will be willing to give it the due consideration), while the “successes” put on show seem to be due mostly to obeying the basic rules.

 The safe alternative to these nutritional “experiments” remain the individual’s will to abide by a minimum set of commonsensical rules and moderation.
 Unfortunately, the universal panacea has not (yet) been discovered!

September 26,  2007 (english version)


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