TheQfactor
Tuesday, March 15
 
Coming soon: the fat-free hot dog
By Maxine Frith. The Independent, 15 March 2005

The healthy-eating message is falling on deaf ears. So one group of scientists has a new goal - to create junk foods that are good for us

It is the new holy grail in the crusade against Britain's bulging waistlines - a low-calorie, vitamin-enriched hot dog that can prevent cancer and reduce cholesterol, and yet tastes exactly like the real thing.

For decades, health experts have pushed the same messages to combat obesity: eat five portions of fruit and vegetables a day, cut out cakes and take more exercise. Now, they are admitting that these tactics have failed dismally. Obesity rates have trebled in the last 20 years and we are facing the prospect of the next generation of children dying before their parents because of weight-related problems.

Instead, scientists and nutritionists are adopting an "if you can't beat them, join them" approach to the problem. Rather than demonising unhealthy and processed products, they are looking at ways of turning "bad" foods into good, while making the good even better.

The latest techniques involve changing the way in which foods are digested to increase feelings of fullness and suppress appetite, as well as manipulating the composition of fats and oils to reduce their unhealthy effects.
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