We’ve seen it all before. It starts with regulators restricting natural products to kneecap the food/dietary supplement market whilst bigger corporate fish get ready to bring out their licenced (patented) products and take over the market. Now it’s the turn of natural CBD oil products. Given the huge rise in popularity, value of the current market and future predictions for growth it’s not surprising to see news of new Pharma CBD products waiting in the wings. For Australian supplement companies the situation is rather bleak as current rules prevent them marketing CBD products, leaving rich pickings for the developing Pharma pipelines. Australian based MGC Pharmaceuticals is taking full advantage of these rules as well as developing an EU market. When all is said and done, as regulators, natural health companies and Big Pharma fight to either maintain or try and get control of the market, the losers can only be the people who depend on the continued support of natural CBD products on the market.
UK diets getting worse
Data from the UK’s most recent National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) report reveals a worrying downturn in intakes of vitamin A, iron, folate, vitamin D and fibre. The report also notes consumption of vegetables and fruit in the UK remains below the paltry Government recommended 5-a-day. This comes as a new study reflects the increased risk of early death from heart disease, diabetes and cancer due to high intakes of ultra-processed foods. The ANH-Intl Food4Health guidelines are underpinned by the knowledge that food was, and is, our first medicine. For more information on steering clear of ultra-processed foods and understanding why it’s imperative to ‘eat a rainbow’ every day, visit our Food4Health campaign page. For children under 6, see our Food4Kids guidelines.
Outdated food supplement regulations in New Zealand
Just as the natural products sector in New Zealand thought agreement had been reached on new regulations, the Government has decided to go back to the drawing board. The NZ natural health industry has seen significant growth in recent years, yet regulation of the sector hasn’t been updated since the mid 1980’s. Rather than using the work undertaken by the previous government, proposals are for a whole scale repetition of the process. However, questions have been raised as to why the new government appears to be stalling on this issue. Yet, this certainly gives time for the industry to pull together representatives and speak as one unified voice.
The safety of food supplements
As more and more people look to support their health with dietary/food supplements, a new US study helps to clarify questions over safety. Taking adverse events (AE) data from two major dietary supplement manufacturers, out of 41,121 AEs reported, only 0.48% were deemed serious (SAE) and those mostly occurred in products for weight loss and glycaemic control. Supplement decriers and sceptics like to refer to them as expensive urine, yet there are many that clearly benefit from targeted supplementation at different life stages e.g. times of extreme stress, fatigue and poor health. Taking a ‘food first’ approach is essential, but supplements, which are just concentrated sources of nutrients, can help fill gaps created by minerally-deficient soils, intensive agriculture, hydroponically grown plants and consumption of highly processed, nutrient-depleted foods.
Does breakfast help or hinder you?
We’ve long been advised to ‘breakfast like a king, eat lunch like a prince and dinner like a pauper’ and exhorted never to miss breakfast as it’s the most important meal of the day. Researchers publishing in The British Medical Journal (BMJ) challenge this long-held view cautioning that, “Breakfast may not be a good strategy for weight loss”. This finding mirrors previous studies questioning the need for people to eat breakfast. If you’re a regular ANH reader, you’ll know that we’ve espoused an evolutionary approach to diet and lifestyle for some time now. From that perspective it’s clear to see that we are genetically programmed to deal with periods of starvation or the human species would not have survived. More than this, we actually benefit from periods of starvation. Hence, the advice to eat 3 meals a day plus 2 snacks equates to constant grazing. Adopted in the post-war decades to benefit large food companies, what’s good for marketing overrides our evolutionary programming and the effects can be seen in the ever-increasing rates of chronic disease. We now know that skipping breakfast is not just useful for weight management, but also for reducing our risk of developing chronic disease. However, please bear in mind that altering your metabolism using food frequency can take time. Some people will drop breakfast easily, but others will need to take it more slowly, adapting over time. Regular fasting helps to reignite your evolutionary protective pathways. Give it a go, you may just find it changes your life!