When it comes to healthy eating, things aren’t always what they seem

Fruits Helen from Melbourne was aged 56 and feeling 100 per cent healthy when she received the home screening kit in the mail. Fortunately she completed the test without hesitation.

How do your views on healthy eating choices compare with those of qualified nutritionists?

A recent LiveLighter survey has shown there can be some big differences. Now health experts are warning people to carefully check the credibility of health and nutrition information to ensure that food that is marketed as ‘healthy’ is not misleading.

The survey listed 57 products and asked more than 1,000 Victorian adults and over 100 nutritionists to label each item as either ‘healthy’ or ‘unhealthy’.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, products that are heavily promoted as good for us were the most polarising. Coconut oil was a prime example, with 75% of general public respondents rating it as ‘healthy' while 85% of experts disagreed.

Gluten-free cakes, orange juice and muesli bars also divided opinion.

Food/drink

% of Victorian adults who rated it ‘healthy’

% of experts who rated it 'healthy'

Coconut oil

75%

15%

Orange juice

71%

24%

Gluten-free cakes

44%

6%

Muesli bars

52%

18%

Conversely, more nutritionists classed, pasta, popcorn and jacket potatoes as healthy.

Food/drink

% of Victorian adults who rated it 'healthy'

% of experts who rated it 'healthy'

Pasta

68%

96%

Popcorn

50%

75%

Jacket Potatoes

69%

94%

According to LiveLighter campaign manager Alison McAleese, it’s important that this isn’t misinterpreted.

"When nutritionists say popcorn is healthy, they're thinking of a typical serve of air-popped popcorn, maybe with a sprinkle of herbs or spices – not the salty, buttery variety sold in enormous buckets!" Alison said.

"The same applies to pasta and jacket potatoes. In their original state these foods are good for us. It's when ingredients like, cream, butter, processed meats and salt are added that they become less healthy."

For reliable information and tips on nutrition, diet and health, visit livelighter.com.au

Keep reading

Message from our CEO
Message from our CEO

SunSmart at beach
Myths about sun protection still abound!

Greater clarity for women over cancer risk
Greater clarity for women over cancer risk

Connecting patients to clinical trials
Connecting patients to clinical trials

Do the home test, it could save your life
Do the home test, it could save your life

Regional Wig Service gives Victorians confidence
Regional Wig Service gives Victorians confidence

Brigitte's story
Brigitte's story

You're invaluable!
You're invaluable!