It was refreshing to say the least to interview Dr Hazel Wallace, The Food Medic recently, she is a blogger, and has thousands of followers on Instagram, but more importantly she is a qualified working medical junior doctor at University College London, and she is passionate about inspiring people to ‘eat themselves well’.
She believes we don’t need to take on special diets, and that we can combat many lifestyle illnesses such as obesity and diabetes just with good food.
Of course, I and many other ‘holistic living’ experts have been banging on for years with the ‘you are what you eat’ theory, but sadly it’s been like a candle in the wind, because popular culture has decided we must count calories, eat ‘fat free’ carb free…practically food free!
Her aim to bridge the gap between mainstream medicine and nutrition is an honorable one. There’s no doubt that conventional medicine merely doffs its cap to ‘nutrition’ and in fact most medical doctors are offered only around half a day’s training in nutrition across their seven years of study. It’s bizarre when you remember that Hippocrates once said, ‘let food be thy medicine’.
Hazel believes we can ‘eat ourselves well’, that there is no need for faddy calorie restrictive diets and that we can combat many lifestyle diseases such as obesity and diabetes with good wholesome food. This is music to my ears, because I am not impressed with the Governments current guidelines, the ‘eat well’ plate should in my view be called the ‘eat badly’ plate, and don’t even get me started on what is served to patients in hospital, let alone what’s available in cafes and vending machines in communal waiting areas – it’s not real food’ that’s for sure.
The book is choc full of healthy recipes including a healthy version of bangers and mash, Mexican breakfast wraps, sweet and spicy chicken burgers and more, and because desserts are allowed too, there’s a sensational recipe for chocolate orange sweet potato brownies.
Her new book has a nutritional guide, and suggests which foods could help to look after your heart, your skin, your brain (omega 3’s basically) and your gut. Hazel recommends kefir, natural yoghurt and fermented foods such as sauerkraut, but she is keen to stress that generally she chooses ingredients for her recipes that can be found easily in any high-street supermarket, so there’s no getting out of it because you don’t have access to certain superfoods or hard to find powders or herbs.
Hazel is also a trained personal trainer so sadly we can’t eat too many of her yummy sweet recipes without moving our body, she suggests HIIT, high intensity interval training, and she gives some easy to follow exercises to do in the comfort of your home, if like me you are not a gym bunny.
I’m off to make the chocolate swirl banana bread, followed by a few exercises, most likely a Burpee or two…
The Food Medic – Recipes,+ Fitness For A Healthier Happier You. Published by Yellow Kite