August 12, 2009 in fat, food, frivolity, science
I have been chuckling at this all day:
Which isn’t to say that I have anything against nutritionists. Especially fat nutritionists, and especially especially The Fat Nutritionist. But I still think those guys are on to something, here.
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August 12, 2009 at 12:33 pm
Seriously, though…I’ve lost count of the number of people with no actual health problems who rattle on about ‘wheat/dairy allergy’ because, I think, it gives them an excuse to eat as little as possible without actually having to say they’re on a weight-loss diet. I actually do know two people who have genuine problems with wheat and/or gluten, and trust me, if you suffered from it, you’d know about it.
I think it should be common knowledge that while a dietician must be qualified, a nutritionist (at least in the UK and I suspect also elsewhere) need not be. But I doubt some people even in the medical profession realize this. Take this guy:
If you don’t feel like reading the article (and I don’t blame you), basically he says at one point that ‘unfortunately’ gastric banding (his field) is cheaper for the NHS than either prison or a lecture from Gillian McKeith. I don’t believe this guy should be allowed to remain in the surgical profession for a multitude of other reasons, but if she’s really his idea of an authority on healthy eating, I wouldn’t let him chop an onion, let alone loose on anyone’s guts.
August 12, 2009 at 12:41 pm
The person I know who’s allergic to wheat gets skin rashes, irritated eyes, and problems breathing when she eats something with wheat. Her allergist even did a food test with two cookies – one wheat-free, one with wheat – and not telling her which was which.
Do I think some people push the wheat allergy when it isn’t there? Sure. But it does exist.
August 12, 2009 at 12:52 pm
I have no doubt that many people suffer from serious and terrible allergies to wheat, dairy, mold, stainproofing chemicals in carpets, you name it. I definitely did not intend to suggest by my post that wheat allergies are bogus. I’m definitely hating on the game here, and not the player.
I’m also honestly not sure what, if any, licencing requirements nutritionists v. dietitians have to meet in the US, although I know from watching You Tube comedy clips that in the UK, dietitians are licensed while any clown can be a nutritionist. (So like, Meme Roth could claim she is a nutrionist… *shudder*)
I do think that if there is one thing at which the human body excels, it is turning food into energy. I am starting to think that claims of ‘superfoods’ or what have you fixing all manner of nutritional imbalances, in the absence of a situation of actual malnutrition, are equivalent to liver fluke cleanses or cures for “acidic blood” – a lot of nonsense designed to convince us something is wrong and therefore sell us something we don’t need. That’s kind of the message I took away from the video.
August 12, 2009 at 2:49 pm
Yeah, I was intolerant of gluten for a while. Keep in mind I said intolerant and not allergic. If I ate any type of gluten, it ran right through me. I was sick for weeks. People told me that I was faking it, but I wasn’t sick because I wasn’t eating it! Like you said before, if you had it, you’d know!!! No fun!! (unlike allergies, intolerances can come and go and fluctuate with your hormones…I was also intolerant of lactose for a while. Not fun, but more fun than not being able to consume gluten!)
August 12, 2009 at 2:56 pm
That is interesting. I was unaware of the difference between an intolerance and an allergy. Thanks for the lesson!
August 12, 2009 at 7:06 pm
*sigh* I’m currently dairy intolerant. I miss icecream.
On the other hand, this made me laugh out loud and play it again for my husband. I love the part where the guy behind the desk is all “Put her on a diet that no normal person could stick to and live!”
December 25, 2009 at 12:10 pm
the fat nutritionist
This is brilliant. It is actually true that a lot of not-very-qualified nutritionists use gluten intolerance and cutting out dairy as their go-to treatments. An actual dietitian would never suggest someone remove gluten (or dairy, for that matter) from their diet unless they were diagnosed with celiac disease (or lactose intolerance or a milk allergy.)
Because purposely restricting one’s diet actually has side effects, like taking a prescription drug. It’s not something to be messed about with lightly.
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