What the Bake-Off judge revealed about our health crisis

A few weeks ago, The Times held a health summit.

They were looking into the various crises in the UK right now, including obesity, unhealthy eating, long waiting lists and the ongoing aftershocks of the pandemic.

When I saw it, my sceptic radar immediately began to bleep.

It was not only funded by the covid vaccine company, AstraZeneca and the insurance company Vitality…

But they also ‘provided evidence’.

I could also immediately see that there was an underlying agenda to further privatise the NHS.

A solution that’s often touted as if the NHS hasn’t already been systematically underfunded and bled dry to the point of collapse.

I’m not going to get into politics here – but we all know that putting our best health interests in the hands of companies with shareholder profits to consider is rarely beneficial to the ordinary person.

We know this from the behaviour of many big pharma companies over the years.

But anyway…

The Times summit did throw up some interesting points.

For example, Dame Prue Leith argued a very compelling case for going back to basics when it comes to food.

She told the summit that more people needed to understand how nutrition worked (hear! hear!)

And that there needed to be a fundamental change in our food culture which had changed radically in her lifetime.

“When I was young, we could eat pretty well what we wanted and it wasn’t a problem,” she said. “It wasn’t just that we had exercise, it was that we had no access to the junk food that the children have today.”

By junk food, she was referring to crisps, chocolate bars and sweets – but this also includes all the ultra-processed foods we eat these days too.

But simply badgering people to eating healthily wasn’t enough.

“Everybody knows that vegetables are better for them than chocolate bars’” she pointed out, “but the knowledge isn’t enough.”

Instead, it required change from the top down.

That meant the government taking action to crack down on the food corporations using restrictions, taxes, and proper warning labels on items like Diet Coke.

She pointed out that we don’t mind ‘the nanny state’ when it comes to things like kids being forced to learn maths – yet when it comes to food there’s an outcry, as if our freedom is being curtailed.

But why is this not happening?

Prue was unwaveringly damning….

“I think the big manufacturers are too powerful, the government gets too much tax from them.”

Now bear in mind that this isn’t some radical leftist firebrand here.

This is a judge from the Great British Bake Off.

And she points the finger directly at the big money influence over the health of our kids.

It’s not just kids either….

Because let’s face it, most of the adult population is now in the grip of a manufactured food culture where processed food, ready meals, pre-packaged sauces and quick snacks are so easy to access… that some people eat nothing else.

This isn’t helped, of course, by the cost-of-living crisis where belt-tightening can lead to buying cheaper, less healthy food on special deals.

Or by a decline in the passing-down of old-fashioned cookery skills from generation to generation.

But look, I realise I am preaching to the choir here!

Good Life Letter readers are more than aware of the issues with poor nutrition.

After all, we know that by making tweaks to what we eat, and diving into nature’s medicine chest when we have a problem, we can keep ourselves healthier and happier for longer.

The reason I am passing on Prue Leith’s comments today is more to show you that at least someone is speaking sense and pointing the finger directly at the true culprits.

But I also wanted to take this opportunity to say…

If you DO want a helping hand to avoid junk foods and processed foods, then I’d recommend getting a copy of The Nostalgic Cook Book.

It contains hundreds of delicious traditional British recipes that are quick and easy to prepare. They are guaranteed to provide at least five fruit and vegetables per day – with all the vitamins, protein, and carbohydrates you need!

There are still copies in stock here.