Last time, we talked about the fact that 25% of all complaints made to the ASA surrounded dodgy nutritional information online. Granted, social media can be a great way to share good advice. But when misinformation is involved through personal stories or selling, it’s an entirely different matter. Here are some ways to tell whether the information you’re reading is either trustworthy or total rubbish.
1. Terms Lacking in Scientific Explanation
By this, we mean words like ‘cleansing’ and ‘detox’. Truth is, food can’t detox you alone. Rather, this is the job of your kidneys or liver. ‘Superfood’ is another silly term with little scientific meaning that’s purpose is to inflate the price of exotic or rare foods.
2. Dissing Certain Foods for No Reason
Cutting out certain food groups completely is not good for you. You’ll need to replace the nutrients you lose from somewhere else. People often try this with carbs, which can result in extreme tiredness. Why? Because they’re needed for virtually all bodily systems to function effectively. Same goes for dairy – cut it out, and you risk developing osteoporosis later in life. In short, eat a balanced diet, but limit the more unhealthy food groups. Remember – nutritional information online isn’t always correct.
3. Foods which Cure-all Ills
Diets that promote a magic ingredient or individual products which promise to solve problems without any lifestyle changes should be avoided. No magic food or capsule can reverse the effects of a terrible diet, lack of exercise or a stressful lifestyle.
Who you SHOULD Turn to for Nutritional Advice
Instead of heading to social media or your favourite celebrities Instagram page, use these resources for the best nutritional advice out there:
- Dieticians and nutritionists.
- Any other professional using evidence-based information.
Professionals are held accountable for what they say and are regulated, unlike celebrities endorsing the latest fad product.