Eyebrows were raised when I left the book that Ciara reviews this week on the kitchen counter.
The immediate assumption that The Anti-Cancer Cookbook would be vegan could be forgiven as in recent times meat has been linked with cancer in various studies.
The book however is not vegan. And, the foreword from Professor John Crown from St Vincent’s University Hospital calls out the media on “dangerous” dialogue in relation to linking diet and cancer: “The influence of diet on cancer is less widely understood (than diabetes and circulatory diseases). The information available to the public in this regard is often ill-informed and misleading. The frequency with which the lay press warns against specific cancer causing foods seems to be rivalled only by their enthusiasm for endorsing alleged cancer preventing super foods and supplements.”
Every day, farmers and those employed in the agriculture industry produce food we are justifiably proud off. To help maximise its value and support farmers, the EU Commission funds the promotion of agri-food products and eligible quality schemes.
This review is well intended as it is part of the recently announced Beating Cancer Plan
Bord Bia is the major Irish recipient of this EU funding and farmers contribute to this promotional work through levies. It is therefore understandable that farmers are concerned that the Commission is now reviewing the promotional budget for meat. This review is well intended as it is part of the recently announced Beating Cancer Plan. As an industry we must weigh concern for funding with concern for human health.
With 3.5 million EU citizens diagnosed with cancer every year, the plan is welcome, despite the threat to the promotional budget on tenuous science.
In The Anti-Cancer Cookbook, smoking and drinking are held up as the most likely culprits for causing cancers.
Obesity however, is also called out as a major contributing factor so our diet is far from off the hook. A healthy balanced diet is central to avoiding obesity and thereafter cancer, according to the authors.
A positive element of the Beating Cancer Plan is that the Commission will take action on childhood obesity
My personal view; the EU promotion budget should not be reduced, but increased. Perhaps changing the theme to reflect how a balanced diet of fresh product, our product, can be beneficial for your health.
A positive element of the Beating Cancer Plan is that the Commission will take action on childhood obesity and launch the “HealthyLifestyle4All” campaign in 2021. This will involve promoting physical activity and healthy diets.
We could all take some inspiration from the Allens, the dairy farmers who are in this weekend’s final of Ireland’s Fittest Family. Dad, Ticey, quit smoking 11 years ago, got back into exercise, showing it’s never too late to start.
We have lots of food in this edition, starting with our cover feature with Lisa Larkin who manufactures sprouted flours in Durrow Mills (Co Offaly). Then our Home Nurse, Nessa Robbins, is extolling the benefits of home schooling in the kitchen, and of course Neven.
Cooking is my vice in terms of procrastination. With a lot to do – that I was not keen to do – last weekend (namely studying and cleaning), I asked my little girls: “Do you want to make buns?” The response was enthusiastic! And when we were at it, we also made bread, soup, some freezer dinners, and the list goes on. I can study next weekend.