What are your main considerations when choosing what to eat? Do you feel you are able to eat healthily in London? If not, why not?
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Gluten and dairy free to comply with my food allergy diet.
The cost and quality.
It's difficult to eat healthier in London because of the high cost of living in this city.
Cheap, affordable food is what is most practical.
Cheap food doesn't have to be bad. Carrots, potatoes,onions could all be purchased for the cost of a cup of coffee in Costa or other coffee chains in the high street. Nice stew - packet of lentils very reasonable for protein in it too. Onions can be softened in some water so no need for oil to fry them. A can of baked beans for extra protein. Even more could be bought by giving up smoking, or tattoos, nails or eyebrows......
There is a lot of cheap healthy food. Potatoes, beans, carrots, apples, rice, flour for baking, chickpeas, lentils, onions, etc.
What is expensive: some kinds of seasonal fruit (but they can be replaced by cheaper fruit), meat and sweets (but you don't need those).
The idea that healthy eating is expensive is a myth which people who are addicted to junk food choose to believe in.
Maybe it would be better to move somewhere cheaper, then.
My considerations are whether I can afford it, time it takes to prepare and if I like it.
Tend to buy a lot of fresh produce from the local market but we still enjoy a takeaway once a week although this is an expensive treat
I tend not to eat out, as it is hard to make healthy food choices, as these tend to be very limited on the menu of popular high street pubs and restaurants. I try to eat more heathily at home but often lack inspiration, for healthier meal ideas, so it is easy to resort to prepacked convenience foods like frozen pizza and chicken in breadcrumbs. I do buy fruit and veg but would like to buy more of the seasonal soft fruits, like strawberries and raspberries but find these are quite pricey, even when in season.
Now that we're leaving the EU, I look forward to getting a train into the countryside to pick my own strawberries.
My prime concern is whether I like it, not what some university educated dietician thinks I shoud eat. Obese children should be controlled by their parent(s) whose failure to do so should be made a financial penalty.
Aha, you’re another of those ‘don’t trust the experts’ types, are you? Good luck with the heart surgery done by some bloke you met in the pub. Who needs a university-educated heart surgeon?
I agree parents need to take responisbility for their childrens diet!
We don't need no education!
My main consideration is that I choose what I eat. I want access to the widest possible range andf I don't want the information censoreed or controlled by officials and politicians except where absolutely necessary. Food Safety is obviously vital but, at the moment, that is well taken care of by EU rules. Dietary ADVICE is welcome but not dietary CONTROL.
Since being diagnosed type 2 diabetic 10 years ago I have been far more interested in the nutritional value of food and what types of food have the most significant effect on raising blood sugar. It would take too long to list all the foods to avoid ( I say avoid, not eliminate) so what I MOSTLY choose now are fresh or frozen vegetables (red, orange, green and leafy types), beans and pulses, , mushrooms, nuts, fresh fruits i.e. apples, berries, the occasional banana and citrus fruit (NOT fruit juice or smoothies). Lean meats, fish, olive oil, yogurts, other dairy, cheeses etc. I would like to add that chocolate with cocoa solids 60%+ and proper dairy ice cream have minimal effect on my blood sugar and are eaten occasionally. Needless to say all these foods are not eaten day in day out but just form part of my diet. I dont over eat and also have the odd take away. So yes, this very well controlled, average weight diabetic who walks regularly does eat healthily in London, thank you.
My husband would agree with you on your diet as he is type 2 diabetic. We don't tend to use oil much now and soften onions in water. The regular walking is part of our daily regime.
Price is the main consideration, but within affordable foods I will then try to buy what is healthy! Fruit and veg can be found cheaply in the market, so I buy alot there. I would like to buy more eithical and environmentaly friendly foods, but the reality is that price comes first!
Main considerations are whether food is organic, free-range and sustainably sourced as well as how much sugar it has
It is generally difficult to find food as described above in London and most restaurants/shops do not label it. Only certain grocery stores have good choice (mainly via home delivery) but the price is exorbitant and the quality is not great
The government should tilt the balance in favour of healthier food by penalizing/charging food producers that use (potentially) carcinogenic chemicals to grow food and have no regard for animal welfair (cram them in small spaces and pump them with antibiotics). These outdated practices from the period of the World Wars and immediately after should be gradually phased out.
Looks like you ingeniously created a new word : wefair. I love it. :-)
Thanks everyone for sharing your views on choosing what to eat.
Some of you have mentioned that it is difficult to eat healthily in London. What are the main reasons for this? Do you feel you have enough information or skills to prepare healthy food?
What would help you make healthy food choices in your life?
Are there healthy options on your local high street? What would you like to see more of?
Why do blackberries rot on the bushes round the corner from the food bank? When will we get to pick our own fruit in the countryside again? Can a few of these East European immigrants share their knowledge of foraging with our own children as part of the National Curriculum? Pythagorus will be important to me someday, but I really feel ignorant when it comes to the berries on our own bushes. Somebody twice my age picks elderflower and makes a cordial. I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT AN ELDERFLOWER LOOKS LIKE!!!
Healthy ness , availabliity and price , london is hard to buy affordable food healthy fresh food it's ridiculous that I can buy crisps chocolate and coke same price as a bag of tomatoes or apples !
Need to reduce junk food portions sizes ,
stimulate market place for more shop selling healthy frozen food cheap
What do you think about linking pice to calories?
After posting my previous comment, I wonder if we're teaching the English language to a high enough standard. People really do need to know how to spell.
organic and locally sourced products. grass fed meat. in London it's a great place to eat helathy but it's too expensive.
Costs of food drop drastically once you stop buying meat.
Cost of living drops drastically if you move somewhere else.
People who chose to do all their food shopping Online are in fact missing on many of the bargins and reductions that are only available in the shop.
I avoid plastic. While can get fruit that is about it interms of plastic free healthy eating on the go. So much in plastic!
Indeed. It's often frustrating that so much food is sold in plastic containers even though it could be just as well sold in bulk for you to pack in your own reusable bag.
Don't eat on the go, then?
Plenty of healthy food in London, but I find healthy food can be either convenient and expensive, or cheap and inconvenient. Plenty of discount supermarkets and markets selling good value healthy ingredients, the cheapest foisted you can buy often, if you have the time to cook from scratch. If you want healthy food that is ready prepared, then it costs more than unhealthy fast food.
Foisted??? Sorry, food. Spellchecker needs a kick.
Perhaps brain food is worth the investment?
I avoid fried, salty and sugary foods, and seek out leafy greens, whole grains, organic fruit and nuts. Morefish than meat, very little red meat, vegetarian at least twice a week.
I choose organic and Fair Trade as much as possible. It is not always easy to find organic and Fair Trade produce locally, supermarkets or local shops, so I do a lot of online ordering and have fruit and vegs delivered to the door. Eating out is a little more complicated, especially as I am a vegetarian. I don't think it's difficult to eat healthily in London, but organic is expensive.
Why buy organic if you're going to pollute our air with your home delivery? The chemicals in our air are far more dangerous than what's on our food.
I always choose my food for its quality. First of all, I don't eat sugar for more than 10 years because everyone knows that it is a proper addictive poison for our body. And this should be the first "food" that the authority should get illegal. There are lots of different substitutes of it like the xylitol, Truvia, stevia, honey and some fructose.
Then, of course, less red meat and cheese than you can (once per week). Here in London if you want to eat healthily you have to spend more than the junk food. This is the real problem!
But I would like to highlight the real scandal here in the UK: the junk food in the schools. There are the majority of the English schools that give low-quality frozen pizzas, fried chicken and fries, besides the number of junk sweets full of poison (sugar).
This is unacceptable and outrageous because in this case, they cannot choose the healthy food they want.
Am I wrong?
Let's change it please, cause we are what we eat.
I don't want sugar illegal while I don't wanted it added to every food unncessarily, I sometimes want to make a cake or custard - shouldn't ban it. You are being somehwat hyberbolic.
Processed food is the problem and should be restricted - not ingredients.
Just eat what you enjoy.
There is so much choice in the supermarkets now.
Just choose a restaurant to suite you taste and budget.
Don't complain about the price all the time.
I'm a pensioner but I eat a balanced diet that we cook ourselves and also eat at restaurants we like and can afford.
I look for healthy tasty food which for me is often Japanese. I find my choices restricted in London, in major part due to the import restrictions imposed by the EU protecting EU interests from Japanese Producers. Finding authentic Japanese ingredients is often very difficult and the already high costs of eating in London is made worse by this. I hope that post Brexit, trade barriers with Japan will come down and the costs of Japanese food in Lodnon will follow suit. I would liek to see London forging stronger cultural links with other Major World Cities and food is a very strong part of that culture. There has been a tendency of late in Britain to think food is European, Indian or Chinese but that is a far too restrictive view and we shoudl promote more diversity.
Importing food from Japan can't be good for the environment.
If you want to find Japanese food, the best place to go is Japan.
We're getting a lot of comments from homesick foreigners on this forum... If London isn't enough like home, try going home.
My main considerations are: is it healthy (low sugar, low processed, lots of fruit and veg, variety of food sources); is it produced, packaged and sold in a way that would have lowest negative impact on the environment; largely or wholly vegetarian.
It is possiblke to eat healthily in London - but more difficult to - costs more, have to go out of your way often. And being bombarded by unhealthy food and encouragement to over stuff ourselves from every/ every other shop outlet now being some sort of food outlet or chain - and thei sight of people constantly eating on the mpve - makes it very hard to resist giving in!
Eating on the move is a new problem. In the days when we were a healthier nation, people ate at home and women stayed at home to cook. Nowadays, women want to have it all - and they want the same for their daughters. Something has to give.
Moderation in everything. Price is always a factor in London, even for those on fairly generous salaries. Availabilty of any type of food is not an issue. I think for most families the conundrum is that processed food is so much cheaper, and for the time poor , more convenient.
I have the same every night and it takes not very long to cook. I prepare boxes full of different vegetables and then take some out every night and put them in my steamer and steam them for about 15minutes. With this I have either chicken or fish on Fridays. I manage to make this my only real meal of the day. Sometimes I have a sandwich in the morning. I still can't lose weight by eating just this though.
Hi Nicola, you should have a look at a whole food plant based diet. My wife started this diet 2 years ago and lost a lot of excess weight as a result, even though she gave birth to our first child during that time! She even lost the celulite that she's had since she was a child.
Try having a portion of Pink Grapefruit juice before each meal, this will help burn fat and allows the body to metabolise properly. I lost 35 kilos doing this and I am on medication that causes weight gain.
We aim to eat as much fresh organic produce as possible although this is not always afffordable. Diabetes is dangerously on the rise and yet there is still far too much added sugar in our food. Supermarket bread, cereals and ready meals are far too high in sugar and saturated fats and antibiotics in meat and poultry are very concerning. We are fortunate to live close to a good fruit and vegetable stall, a healthfood shop and a weekly farmers market so can access fresh fruit vegetables and good fish, cheeses, pulses and olive oil. But it's very expensive. There are some great food outlets and restaurants in London, but for people on a tight budget it's the cheap sugary high fat and salty foods that are more accessible and affordable. Why does almost everything have added sugar (even natural sugar like maple syrup) when it's not necessary?
We can eat very healthily at home but to eat out healthily in London certainly costs.
There is a sugar lobby, some people have financial interests in selling more sugar.
Sugar is CHEAP. The food industry wants to make a profit.