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Eat Food: It’s Really That Simple

Eat Food: It’s Really That Simple

Health
Nutritionism is a term used to describe the reductionist approach to nutrition. Nutritionism is when we forget we are eating food. How on earth could we be forgetting we are eating food?! As bizarre as it seems, nutritionism is very much so prevalent in the western culture and could be the root of a lot public health issues. Nutritionism defines food as the sum of its nutrients. When you eat an apple, you aren’t eating an apple. You are eating fibre, vitamin A, phytonutrients and fructose. This obsession with defining food solely by their nutrient content is the essence of nutritionism. It is the removal of the context in which nutrients are consumed and can lead to a rather unhealthy and entirely distorted relationship with food. Where Did It All…
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Kate Wengier Q & A

Kate Wengier Q & A

Other
Can you please tell us a little about yourself and your career? My name is Kate and I’m a mum of four and a dietitian. Being a dietitian, I started off being trained in a hospital, but for me, I was always more interested in health promotion, so rather than following that hospital path, I started doing some private practice work. The more work I did, the more interested I became in behaviour change before it even developed to what it is today and I wanted to go a more “upstream” regarding health promotion. We started doing some kids’ cooking classes and about three years ago, we launched Foost. Foost has one main mission: to get people to eat colourful—to increase people’s intake of fruit and vegetables—it’s literally that simple.…
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Nutraceuticals

Nutraceuticals

Health
The field of nutrition is forever evolving and new findings are surfacing all the time. One interesting development of late is nutraceuticals. If you haven’t heard the term before, do not fear. This article will take you through everything you need to know. What are Nutraceuticals? We all know that fruit and vegetables are healthy, and most people can understand that this is due to their high vitamin and mineral content. What is less known, is that these foods are high in a third group of nutrients called phytochemicals. Phytochemicals, or bioactive substances, are a diverse group of chemical compounds that have a role in maintaining our health. Each of the thousands of phytochemicals that exist, are unique and have an individual role in the body. They can participate in…
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Melanie McGrice Q & A

Melanie McGrice Q & A

Other
Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself and your career? I have been a dietitian for around 15 years now and my passion is fertility, pregnancy and women’s health. It’s what we call ‘early life nutrition’ and I’m particularly passionate about that because I have come to learn that what a woman eats in the lead up to pregnancy, during pregnancy and then what we feed our babies during the first couple of years of life—that period of time is often called the first 1,000 days—and that has a humungous impact upon the genetics of our babies, which goes on to impact their future health. The research is currently suggesting that the next generation are actually going to have shorter lifespans than we will because of the…
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Jessica Spendlove Q & A

Jessica Spendlove Q & A

Other, Sports
Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself and your career? I grew up in Sydney and did a lot of sport when I was younger, particularly swimming, that was my sport of choice. There were many hours in the pool and lots of training before and after school. While I was Swimming, I actually saw a sports dietitian, Helen O’Connor, and it was at that point I thought, “This nutrition thing is pretty interesting, maybe that’s what I want to do with myself.” By the time I finished high school, I was really interested in sports nutrition and decided that’s what I wanted to do. I went to Wollongong University and did my undergraduate there, which was a Bachelor of Science in nutrition. When I finished that,…
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Just Add Water

Just Add Water

Health
Bland, boring old water. Taste like nothing, doesn’t look anything special, and doesn’t really do anything sitting in your cup. Once it’s in your body, however, there is nothing boring about it! The body is made up of about 55% water by weight and you better make sure you get enough of it. Here’s why… What does water do? Water has a myriad of functions in the body, one of the most important ones, is in the blood. A large fraction of blood is made up of water and without it, blood wouldn’t be able to do all the important things you want it to do. Such as, transport oxygen and nutrients around your body, so that you can run, jump, play, and breathe! Water is also heavily involved in…
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Simone Austin Q & A

Simone Austin Q & A

Other, Sports
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your career? I always wanted to work in sports nutrition and community nutrition. After graduation, I started working at a community health centre and then shortly after, part-time at the Western Bulldogs AFL club. So, I was doing what I wanted. And then, to cut a long story short because it’s been 23 years, I increased my sports work when my son was born. It’s been nearly 18 years! The next thing I did was work with the Australian cricket team part-time for seven years. I have always done some private practice and some form of presenting throughout. For the past nine years, I have been working at Hawthorn Football Club. I’ve seen three premierships there and during that time…
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The Facts about Fibre

The Facts about Fibre

Health
For a lot of us, fibre is thought of as that cardboard-tasting powder your nanna sprinkles on her cereal, or wholemeal bread your dad tried to make you eat as a kid. It is well known that fibre is good for you, but it is poorly understood why. Yes, it has something to do with the bowels, and yes, it comes from whole grains, fruit and veg. Let’s try to deepen our understanding of fibre, past the basics. What is Fibre? Fibre is a carbohydrate. It consists of long strands of glucose, arranged in a way that the body’s digestive enzymes are unable to break down. Fibres’ resistance to digestion is due to how to it is organised in the grain, or, the way glucose is chemically bonded to itself.…
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The Obesity Crisis: A Blame Game

The Obesity Crisis: A Blame Game

Health
Obesity and overweight prevalence is higher than ever. With this, an alarming increase in chronic diseases has been observed. While the obesity crisis is common knowledge, what is less obvious are the underlying factors. A popular belief about obesity is that the individual is solely responsible for their disease. It’s their own fault they’re fat. This belief stems from what public health professionals are calling weight stigma/bias; the social phenomenon where overweight and obese individuals are perceived as disgusting, gluttonous and with a dire lack of self control. No one forced them to eat that McValue meal, or to choose white bread over wholemeal at the supermarket. They’ve got no one to blame but themselves, right? Well, no. Not exactly. The obesogenic environment is emerging as a new model that…
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Gemma Sampson Q & A

Gemma Sampson Q & A

Other
Can you please tell us a little bit about yourself? I’m originally from near Sydney and I spent about six years of my teenage years overseas in Zambia in Africa before moving back to Australia for year 12. I was interested in nutrition and sport, so went into dietetics at The University of Wollongong. After that I got straight into work, moved to the country for a bit, then moved back to Sydney and decided, “Alright, let’s go overseas,” because there weren’t any jobs in Australia at the time. I thought, “I’ll do a couple of locums in the UK”—seven years later, I’m still here. I’m looking at moving back to Australia in the next year or two because I’ve started missing Australia and the beach. I’m also quite passionate…
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