New Test Tells The Doctor What You've Been Eating

Five A Day Test

The Huffington Post UK   First Posted: 11/01/12 11:43 Updated: 11/01/12 11:43

Ever told a little white lie when the doctor asks you about your eating and drinking habits? Soon there may be no hiding from the truth as a new test could tell your GP exactly what you’ve been eating.

The test, which could be introduced to the UK within five years, tells doctors what patients have been eating over the past week.

Researchers believe this could be a powerful weapon in the fight against obesity and could potentially help scientists establish important links between diet and diseases. Those suffering from unidentifiable allergies could also benefit.

The test identifies chemical fingerprints of substances found in urine that have been created by different foods as they pass through the body.

With funding from the Food Standards Agency, a prototype has been developed by research teams at Aberystwyth and Newcastle Universities.

Chemical signatures for raspberries, broccoli, orange juice and salmon have been successfully profiled and researchers are confident every ingredient will eventually be identifiable, it was reported in The Independent.

Professor John Draper, leading the research team at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (Ibers) at Aberystwyth University believes the first commercial dipsticks could be available within five years.

He said: "It should mean that for the first time researchers will be able to say for certain which items of food help protect against specific diseases, and those that can seriously increase the chance of getting a particular disease."

If you're not convinced you'd pass the test, see our ideas below for alternative ways to get your five-a-day.

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  • Alternative Ways To Get Your Five-A-Day

  • Make A Lettuce Wrap

    "For fajitas and other food traditionally served in a wrap, try wrapping in whole lettuce leaves. This increases your vegetable intake as well as being helpful for people trying to reduce their wheat or gluten intake and a great, easy way to get one of your five-a-day." Daisy Connor, Nutritional Therapist at the <a href="http://www.nna-uk.com/" target="_hplink">Naturopathic Nutrition Association.</a>

  • Try 'Carrot Cake' Porridge

    "Add grated carrot or an apple, ground almonds and cinnamon to plain porridge." <em>Yvonne Bishop-Weston, Nutritionist for</em> <a href="http://www.foodsforlife.co.uk/" target="_hplink">Foods for Life</a>.

  • Add A Vegetable Twist To Your Mash

    "Use mashed mixed root veg as an alternative to mashed potato, such as carrot or squash and swede, or mashed cauliflower. "Potatoes don't count as one of your five-a-day, so this way, you can still enjoy mash but with a five-a-day boost." <strong>Clare Casson</strong>, <a href="http://www.clarecasson.co.uk/" target="_hplink">Nutritionist and Wellbeing Coach</a>.

  • Choose Tofu

    "Swap beefburgers for tofu burgers - these are made with the soy pulp left over after soy milk has been extracted from ground, soaked soybeans, which contain all the fibre from the beans." <strong>Clare Casson</strong>, <a href="http://www.clarecasson.co.uk/" target="_hplink">Nutritionist and Wellbeing Coach</a>

  • Add Veggies To Your Cakes

    "We all know about carrot cake, but other vegetables work just as well. Beetroot makes a delicious addition to chocolate brownies. "Halve the amount of sugar recommended in a recipe, to make them super-healthy." <strong>Clare Casson</strong>, <a href="http://www.clarecasson.co.uk/" target="_hplink">Nutritionist and Wellbeing Coach</a>.

  • Frozen Fruit Treats

    "For a fast treat that packs in plenty of fruit, try instant frozen yoghurt: Blend equal quantities of frozen berries and natural or soy yoghurt. "Sweeten to taste with honey or xylitol and serve immediately. Raw fruit that feels like a treat!" <strong>Daisy Connor</strong>, Nutritional Therapist for <a href="http://www.nna-uk.com/" target="_hplink">Naturopathic Nutrition Association.</a>

  • Learn To Love Lentils

    "Blend cooked courgettes and lentils into plain tomato pasta sauce to give extra vegetables plus protein. "For a creamier sauce, try blending pine nuts and adding to the sauce for creaminess with added vegetable protein and healthy fat." <strong>Daisy Connor</strong>, Nutritional Therapist for <a href="http://www.nna-uk.com/" target="_hplink">Naturopathic Nutrition Association</a>.

  • Make Your Own ChickPea Pasta

    "Pasta doesn't count towards your five-a-day, but what if you make your own? "Use chickpea (gram) flour to make home made pasta. Chickpeas are a great five-a-day source." <strong>Clare Casson</strong>, <a href="http://www.clarecasson.co.uk/" target="_hplink">Nutritionist and Wellbeing Coach</a>.

  • Blend A Veg-Packed Pasta Sauce

    "Blend cooked courgettes and lentils into plain tomato pasta sauce to add extra vegetables plus protein. "For a creamier sauce, try blending pine nuts and adding to the sauce for creaminess with added vegetable protein and healthy fat." <strong>Daisy Connor</strong>, Nutritional Therapist at the <a href="http://www.nna-uk.com/" target="_hplink">Naturopathic Nutrition Association</a>.

  • Create Your Own Veggie Smoothie

    "Include a handful or so of cooked, bland-tasting cooked beans like butter beans in a fruit smoothie to add thickness and protein as well as an additional one of your 5-a-day," says <em>Clare Casson, Nutritionist and Wellbeing Coach.</em> "Try a bespoke veggie smoothie with avocado and celery! Because it includes avocado, which many people aren't keen on but find it surprisingly tasty when mixed with fruit," says <em>Daisy Connor, Nutritional Therapist. </em>

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