Making it personal

Public health advice, especially on what to eat, often seems contradictory or hard to follow. Sam Lane and Siân Astley say the answer is personalised dietary advice based on based on a range of information and data from smart devices

The Biologist 65(6) p20-23

We’ve read the headlines, skimmed the columns and watched the videos, yet we are none the wiser about what we should actually be doing to stay healthy. Rather than there being a shortage of health advice, there is too much for anyone to sensibly digest, particularly when it comes to diet.

Eating is so much more than just a means to be healthy[1] so dietitians and registered nutritionists continue to be crowded out of the market by celebrities, bloggers and YouTube stars, with their ‘10 foods for fat loss’ and other claims. While it is positive that people are increasingly engaged with what they eat and how it affects their longer-term health, it’s hard not to be swept away by the latest fad. Other people are overwhelmed, resigned to failure or not listening because public health messages are confusing, apparently contradictory or just not realistic for them.

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