How To Avoid a Online Diet Nightmare

2444248841_4b8da386bb[1]It’s all too easy these days to go on line and look for something on a particular subject, such is the ability of modern search engines to be able to bring up your particular topic or subject with such great ease is astounding.

Put in a search term such as weight loss, dietary advice, nutritional advice, how to lose weight, which diet is best etc, you will have before you a plethora of search results, and you can be very easily misguided by what is being presented before you.

You have to remember that most of the sites on the Internet that are giving advice in a particular area, may not be written by somebody who is qualified in a particular area to give advice on losing weight, diet advice, and any other advice which revolves around your health.

It does pay to be extremely careful when selecting someone or a site for instance that is going to supposedly give you expert advice when it comes to dietary issues etc.

The Sunday Mail Online today reports such findings which when you read the following information, you might find quite surprising although some people may not find it surprising.

A 52-year-old mother of two took the advice of one of these on line dieting sites from a so-called nutritional therapist who told her to go on a detox diet, which involved drinking four pints of water a day and a large reduction in salt intake.

After being on this plan for a week she was taken to hospital very ill, and as a result of being on this particular plan had epileptic fits, and the end result was having permanent brain damage. She was awarded £800,000 in compensation which although it sounds a lot, it won’t give her her life back and stop her from suffering from epileptic fits.

The pitfall of this is there is a legal loophole which people use you cannot be called a registered dietitian unless you are qualified because doing so is illegal.

However you are able to say that you are a nutritional expert there is no law stating that you have to be qualified, in order to give out information to people regarding nutritional health.

So you are able to call yourself a nutritionist without any worries of being told that what you’re doing isn’t correct, or that you are not qualified to give out information regarding people’s nutritional health. Unless you actually look for a qualified nutritionist using the Nutrition Society’s registry who have to do a three-year course in order to become one, then the information you get will be less than satisfactory.

You are at the mercy of other people, so really unless you know a little bit yourself about nutrition it’s a bit like playing Russian roulette with your health. The Mail on Sunday did their own investigation and their reporter posed as a working mother, who was suffering from low energy that was the only symptom that the sites were told she had.

She told them that she was eating a diet of some cereal and a banana for breakfast, and that her lunch consisted of a sandwich or, cheese with some tomatoes and crackers. Having a biscuit in the afternoon, and had fish with some salad for her dinner, she also told them that she ate eggs and red meat once a week and didn’t have any supplements in her diet also.

So this diet would actually give her 25 percent of the amount of iron she would need in her diet in order to feel quite normal. A lack of iron in your diet can make you feel quite tired and lacking in energy. So here are the results of the sites that they chose to try in order to get some nutritional advice regarding their particular problem which she had.

  • The first site which was used was nature’ they claimed to be a team of trained nutritional practitioners which were unnamed. How this particular site works is you send in a urine sample, and also fill in a form to tell them what you have been eating. Was they able to spot the deficiency ? the answer was no. The urine test said that there was all sorts of imbalances in the body which was due to electrical appliances within the home giving off (EMR ) electro magnetic radiation.She was told to avoid dairy foods and to eat lots of fruit and vegetables. That was the nutritional advice that she got for this particular instance. The diet plan which she was given was low in protein and iron as well. They gave the site a quality score of 1/5. And said that the advice that was given by the site was nonsense and would not properly address the problem that you may be having with your energy levels regarding a lack of iron.
  • The next site on the list was this is run by somebody called James Collier, the diagnosis is done by sending in what you eat each day, and a proposed diet plan is sent for you in order to follow.This is done by filling in a questionnaire which does sound a bit more of a professional approach in order to diagnose any deficiencies, within your particular eating habits your asked if there has been any serious illnesses within your life and if so what they were.Were they able to spot the iron deficiency ? the researchers said no they didn’t, but the advice given was to eat more read lean meat which is a good source of iron.The recommendations that were given were on a sheet with bullet points as to what to eat, the advice that was given from this particular site was indeed up to the mark and scored a quality score of 3/5. The dietary recommendations which were given were eat cereal for breakfast, eat good sensible portions of protein, and eating red meat for its iron content.
  • The next site which was tested was called, this is an online service which is provided by two registered dietician’s, what you get from this service is a diary to use, which you are given when you have completed 12 questions to fill in on a online form.Were they able to spot the iron deficiency ? no they were not, the dietary advice that was given from this particular site was to eat fruit rather than eating chocolate as a snack, keep your salt intake low and eat a variety of foods from different food groups, carbohydrates fiber, protein, the opinion that was gathered about this particular service. Was it was a quick glance at what you eat and a quick turnaround for your particular diet plan, this particular site got a quality rating of 2/5.
  • Next is mckeithinteractive this site is run by show host Gillian McKeith of you are what you eat fame, what you get from this particular service is a diet dietary service, you are asked to provide answers from 20 multiple-choice questions. Was they able to spot the iron deficiency ? the researchers said nearly.You get a 70 page in-depth preview of how health is related to your eating habits and your diet, the advice that was given to the researcher was to reduce her intake of salt and wheat, and stop consumption of dairy products and alcohol as well. The recommendations were to eat porridge, spinach soup, and a vegetarian’s stew for lunch and dinner. This particular site achieved a quality score of 2/5.
  • And the last site was nutriprofile, this last site was free. All the others you have to you pay for you get a unique scientific validated report, which is personalised to meet your own nutritional needs you fill in a detailed on line questionnaire form. And in return you get a 22 page document which shows you where things are lacking in. Were they able to spot the iron deficiency ? the researchers said partially.She was advised that there were deficiencies within her iron intake and contained within report was a two-page document suggesting certain supplements which could be taken in order to correct the particular issues which she had, this was a way to make you buy particular supplements which you may not have needed. This site got a quality score of 1/5.

There is a moral to this story and it quite simply is this, if you do have a particular problem with nutrition please don’t try any services or sites without getting professional guidance go and see your GP who may be able to put you in touch with someone who knows all about nutrition and diet.

It is so easy to get sucked in by marketing talk, which a lot of the time has no real basis and/or standing as regards someone’s expertise, in a particular field especially one’s such as so-called nutritionists or dietitians whom aren’t qualified to give expert advice.

There may be no way at all to validate what these people can say is true or not, and whether or not the advice they are giving to you is going to help you with your particular dietary and/or nutritional needs. I do hope by reading this that it will make you more weary in the future of trusting what other people say and can do.


Related posts:

  1. 10 Diet Mistakes and How You Can Avoid Them
  2. The Online Fitness Test
  3. The Grandad Diet
  4. The Cabbage Soup Diet
  5. The Fit Squad Diet
About Mark

Mark is the founder and editor of losethattyre You can read more about me here. Follow me on twitter @markcoruk

Comments Closed

  • Andrew Scott

    Hi Mark, I have just come across your site and it’s got some great articles.

    I too have started my weight loss journey back in January (08), I tipped the scales at 302lbs (21.5st) and now (Aug 08) I am down to 270lbs (19.2st) and I am losing about 2-3lbs per week, the healthy and permanent way.

    I have put you in my blogroll and I’ll be back.

    Take care,

    Andrew Scotts last blog post..THE CAUSE JUST GOT BIGGER!

  • Mark

    Hi Andrew thanks come back anytime glad it’s inspiring to you.

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