Diets do not lead to long term weight loss in the vast majority of individuals. In fact, compensatory reductions in metabolic rate, increased hunger signals and lost lean muscle mass very often lead to dieters gaining back more body fat than they lost in the first place!
In our society, it seems like it is a constant obsession to try to get fit yet all the time reverting back to the food and entertainment forms that are so prevalent. Every single family get together, every holiday, every celebration is centered on food and drink. Most of the time gluttonous food and drink!
Last year, I gave up any form of weird food restriction after a Dieting Decade which saw me trying every single fad going to keep my weight under control. Atkins, Dukan, 5:2, GI - I'd done the lot. And I was heartily sick of it.
During the 20th century, which I sometimes refer to as the Dark Ages of Nutrition, many governments and prominent health organizations adopted erroneous theories on many nutritional topics, including sugar, saturated fat, and dietary cholesterol.
With Valentine's day upon us it can be easy to overdose on an array of refined sugar products disguised in cute little heart shape packages and gift...
There's absolutely nothing wrong with having a sweet tooth or looking forward to a delicious dessert to complete a healthy meal but with science now telling us sugar may actually be worse than salt for raising blood pressure, it makes good sense to try and find recipes that deliver healthier but still delicious desserts, some of which may even be completely sugar-free.
In order to get our diet under control we need to unlearn our bad eating habits, kick our addictions, learn to speak the confounding and purposely confusing language of food labels and prepare to get acquainted with hunger because we no longer know when we are actually full.
We all know that oats are good for us - they have long been linked to healthy eating, and are one of those staple foods that we rely on when we need something that is going to fill us up, and keep us fuller for longer.
If we look at behavioural theory, there's evidence to suggest that the sceptics might be overstating the futility of January austerity. One of the most powerful forces in behaviour change is social norms, the simple idea that we are heavily influenced by what others do.
There's quite a few products around that are accidentally vegan. So while you can enjoy discovering some new vegan chocolate and biscuits, you can also keep eating these items safe in the knowledge that they contain no animal products.
Does it all boil (or fry) down to the fact that society doesn't look at the bigger picture but instead focuses on paddling one's own self-interested, personal gain canoe at the expense of another? Have things got so bad that corporations don't give two hoots about what happens to others from their own decisions and actions?
"Right now I have to warn you that you are too fat and I am concerned," I explained to my sister. It was the line that made her sit up and listen, and go on to lose six stone. I recall the time I would see my sister struggle because she was carrying too much fat.
Most traditional diets are unsustainable, and based on unrealistic expectations of ourselves, and as a result, are destined to fail - leading to that inevitable rollercoaster of weight-loss and weight-gain that we hear so much about.
Unfortunately we are not all programmed to be gym-bunnies and live off green juice, so come the first of February the gym regulars tend to get their normal routine back, while many of us might find ourselves with a glass of wine in one hand and a slice of pizza in the other, not really understanding how it happened.
But the injustices of intensive meat production aren't limited to the animals involved, or the natural environment, or the people unfortunate enough to live close to industrial farms. It's worse than that.
Mindful eating is based on the ancient Buddhist practise of mindfulness, which provides a simple way to tune into your brain, and take control of your behaviours. In the context of eating well, it means being present, free from distractions, and fully aware of what your body is telling you.