The vegan/allergy labelling issue
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
3w ago
Image courtesy of Hooley & Brown In theory the huge growth in the number of vegan products on the market should be a massive bonus for those with milk or egg allergies. But – because so many of them come with PAL/May Contain warnings for milk and egg, it has also been a cause of great frustration and no small degree of acrimony. But it is a tricky issue. Vegans and the allergy community are coming from very different places. And then there is the food industry – with a whole different set of priorities – and the regulators/enforcers who have to police the territory. At a very interesting s ..read more
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A gluten free Christmas just could be delicious – not a penance!
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
2M ago
Oh dear… It seems that Vanessa Feltz has been fanning the flames of fury already ignited in the allergic and Coeliac community by Rachel Johnson last week. On Monday’s This Morning she complained about the inconvenience of accommodating a Coeliac at the Christmas table and, by extension, accused all gluten free food of being unappetising, if not inedible. A great deal has now been written about how both Rachel Johnson and Vanessa Feltz were wrong on almost every point they made (see Coeliac UK’s response to the Feltz piece quoted in the Mail on Line here and the various posts linked by Alex G ..read more
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A food fad won’t kill you – an allergy will
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
2M ago
There has been a predictable outcry in the allergy world this week’s in response to Rachel Johnson’s piece in Thursday’s Evening Standard on ‘dietary requirements’ and food fads. Being charitable, I am assuming that she has never suffered from or lived with someone with a food allergy. However, I do have some sympathy with her basic contention that we have become too food faddy. Not because I object to people having personal food preferences – that is their issue – but because it horribly muddies the waters, especially in the food service/catering world, for those with genuine allergies. Alle ..read more
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Bioplastics – a solution or part of the problem?
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
3M ago
Everyday Plastic is a social enterprise group using accessible learning and publicity campaigns to reduce the amount of plastics used daily in our society. It was founded by its current director Daniel Webb who, having moved to Margate in Kent in 2016, was horrified to discover that there were no plastic recycling options on offer.  So horrified that he decided to collect and analyse all of his own plastic waste for a year. Believing that if everyone were to become that closely aquainted with their own plastic use they might be inspired to take action, he started Everyday Plastic on a mis ..read more
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FreeFrom Christmas Awards – the Winners
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
3M ago
Since they were launched two years ago the FreeFrom Christmas Awards have been a great success. And how lucky are ‘freefrom-ers’ these days!  From Advent calendars to gifts, party food to Christmas dinner, there is no longer any need for them to miss out. Indeed, the whole family can happily eat freefrom and never know the difference! All the results are to be found on the Awards website and on their Instagram page (along with some fun reels of the judging process – even Boris the ginger cat got a look in!) but here are a few of the high points. NOMO, the freefrom arm of Kinnerton Confec ..read more
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Do not extradite Julian Assange to the US
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
4M ago
Julian Assange is being sought by the current US administration for publishing US government documents which exposed war crimes and human rights abuses. The politically motivated charges represent an unprecedented attack on press freedom and the public’s right to know – seeking to criminalise basic journalistic activity. Assange is facing a 175-year sentence for publishing truthful information in the public interest. The US government has been fighting to extradite Julian Assange so he can be prosecuted in US courts for publishing their secrets which include evidence of war crimes, government ..read more
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What to believe – applying critical thought
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
4M ago
For the average citizen evaluating the claims made for cure all – or even improve all – health products and procedures has always been difficult. Not only is it an area in which we have minimal expertise but most of us have a vested interest in finding a miracle intervention that will solve our health problems. Faced with extravagant or competing claims, the level headed will look for some sort of evidence to support that product or intervention’s claims. This will usually take the form of research – one or more trials that have ‘scientifically’ evaluated the product or intervention and come u ..read more
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Could wireless monitoring devices be killing racehorses?
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
4M ago
Regular readers may remember that back in August last year I alerted you to a posting on Arthur Firstenberg’s Cellphone Task Force site about phone masts and bird flu. Could there be a connection between the fact that the two wildlife sites in Holland and Northern France which had suffered catastrophic bird flu deaths were in urban environments surrounded by high concentrations of antennae and electromagnetic radiation while the two that had suffered fewest deaths were in country sites with very low levels of EM pollution. Coincidence or was the EM pollution relevant? And now he asks an equal ..read more
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New distribution for Dr Joneja’s Histamine books
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
5M ago
Dr  Janice Joneja is recognised as a world expert on histamine intolerance – or, to be more accurate, histamine excess. Although intolerance to histamine does exist it is extremely rare. Most of the 1% of the world’s population who are thought to experience histamine related symptoms are actually reacting to an excess of histamine in their bodies. While an excess of histamine is not desirable, histamine is an absolutely crucial molecule used by our immune systems to combat pathogens, infections – and allergens – as hay fever sufferers will know only too well. When they inhale pollens to ..read more
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Can words heal?
Michelle's blog
by Michelle Berridale Johnson
6M ago
Sticks and stones may break our bones but words can never hurt us. But is that true? Or, if words cannot literally hurt us, can they either help or hinder us in healing ourselves? This question was raised by a recent article in the Townsend Letter, an e-newsletter for doctors and laymen focusing on alternative approaches to health. Dr Erik Peper described the case of  a woman who had damaged her eye (a corneal abrasion)  some years previously. Although the eye had healed perfectly, whenever she was tired, stressed or upset the eye would itch or be painful and over the years it appea ..read more
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