Tuesday, 10 November 2015 05:52

Is The Nordic Diet The Healthiest Way To Eat?

nordic.jpgThe ‘Nordic Diet’ has recently hit the media, with suggestions it could be the weight loss answer we’ve all been looking for. Rich in plant foods, the Nordic Diet features plenty of root vegetables, cruciferous vegetables and berries, encourages oily fish (salmon and herring), whole grains (mostly oats and rye), canola oil, and includes some game meat and dairy. The diet also emphasises choosing local, seasonal, organic produce and limiting waste.

The Dietitians Association of Australia (DAA) applauds the principles of the Nordic Diet, which are largely consistent with the recommendations of the Australian Dietary Guidelines, but it’s important to remember that no one diet is the ‘healthiest’ or the ‘best’. There are many ways to eat healthily and different patterns of eating will suit different people.

The Nordic Diet was designed for the local Nordic environment – but closer to home, our local environment produces a different food supply. DAA suggests that Australian’s wanting to follow the diet apply the Nordic Diet concepts of eating plenty of vegetables, fruit, fish, whole grains, healthy oils and dairy from the local food supply, instead of attempting to source foods specific to the Nordic region (which could be expensive, and would contradict the diet’s philosophy of choosing local, seasonal foods).

The Nordic Diet also places an emphasis on organic foods, which is not an accessible option for all Australians. In Australia, the levels of chemical residue in food are regulated so all fresh food is safe to eat, regardless of whether or not it’s organic.  And both organic and conventionally-grown foods have been shown to provide all the nutrients required when included in a healthy, balanced diet.

DAA encourages Australians considering different approaches to improve their diet to seek tailored nutrition advice and support from an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD). APDs are university-qualified in nutrition and dietetics, and tailor their advice based on the individual.