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LETTER: We must all make sacrifices to protect the NHS

Readers' letters | Published:

A reader urges others to focus on improving our diets to aid the NHS.

We need to review our diets, one reader says.

Are the people who queued for two hours at a fast food restaurant, the very same people, who clap for the NHS every Thursday? Well they might; their dietary choices will ensure medical services will be needed by them in the future. No point blaming governments for the state of the NHS. Hippocrates said our food would kill us or cure us. If you must blame politicians for this dire situation, blame them for welcoming in the American fast food outlets. We were mostly all slim in the 70s; then these fast food giants arrived with their unhealthy offerings and gargantuan portions.

If you must blame anyone, blame food manufacturers, who put palm oil, one of THE most fattening products there is, into just about everything we eat, destroying, in the process, the last habitats of the orangutan, just as the insatiable appetite for the burger has destroyed so much of the rain forests of Brazil and the lives of its indigenous peoples. (The rain forests of Borneo, with its unique and precious wildlife, are moving closer to annihilation, because of another of our apparently insatiable demands; toilet paper.)

If we really want to support the NHS and not succumb to disastrous pandemics, if we really love our planet and want to save it, then we have to change our core values (listen up, Greta Thunberg, who, it would seem, eats junk too) and start thinking more consciously about the food we put on our plate, on the amounts we eat and from where it has come. Demand that the government ban ALL additives from our food, and proactively encourages our farmers to go organic and the rest of us to choose organic. (“5 a day” with their current payloads of chemicals, are likely to do us more harm than good, so just as well Heinz vegetable soup has so little veg in it.)

Change is always challenging, and our choice of which food we eat, if criticised, can be deeply offensive and challenging, but it is something that demands sacrifices if we are to survive as a species. Hippocrates also said “Do no harm”, but what we eat does so much harm to nature, and, ironically, to ourselves, as we succumb in such massive numbers to Covid

N Jones, Shrewsbury

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