The Validity of the Concept of Health Foods

  • Maurice Hanssen


The consistent and helpful dietary advice given during the past hundred years by the mainstream advocates of reformed eating is contrasted with the sometimes dogmatic yet contradictory guidance from doctors and nutritionists.

Examples are given of foods that can either be prepared so as to be nutritionally beneficial or as ‘junk foods’ and the question as to why nutritional consequences are not often taken into account by food manufacturers is discussed.

The arguments concerning ‘cosmetic additives’ are reviewed in the light of the counteracting influence of the health food supporters of foods as free as possible from unnecessary additions.

The question is raised as to why it is that some normally objective scientists become highly emotional whenever the subject of health foods is raised, whereas the desire and indeed the practice of the health food industry is to collaborate closely with informed expert opinion in order to educate and guide the interested public in their eating habits. Why is so much time spent in confrontation instead of education which could begin with what we give each other to eat at meetings and in schools, universities and hospitals? A more positive approach is proposed.

The future role of health foods is explored and a working definition covering selection and preparation of raw materials, chemical extractions and artificial additives suggested as providing a valid basis for the concept of health foods.


Good Manufacturing Practice Health Food White Bread Junk Food Apply Science Publisher 
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Copyright information

© Applied Science Publishers Ltd 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maurice Hanssen
    • 1
  1. 1.Health Food Manufacturers’ AssociationEsherUK

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