A critique/rant of Elsie Widdowson on Radio 4 ‘Great Lives’

I rarely listen to the BBC any more, as they have revealed such poor judgement, bias and willingness to engage in indoctrination, mostly by sleight of hand, that I want nothing to do with them. However, while driving yesterday I heard the whole of the Radio 4 programme ‘Great Lives’ which was about the nutritional scientist Elsie Widdowson.

My ears perked up when I heard that she was delving into carbohydrates and how to measure the various characteristics of this macro nutrient in 1939 and through the early part of 1940, when she and a colleague were endeavouring to determine a workable diet that could be achieved free from any imports if the war went horribly wrong and Britain had to rely solely on its own food production. Her two-man team came up with the following: a diet of potatoes, bread and vegetables was adequate for human needs. They even ‘tested’ this on a trip in the icy Lake District, for a couple of weeks (if I remember rightly) and ‘survived’ (!?) So this was deemed to be a good diet for the nation.

This all seems rather laughable and slapdash, and surely cannot be accurate, but that’s what passes on the BBC for information these days it seems. The impression left on the listener was that this was some kind of heroic scientific advance in nutrition, but it’s hard to see what exactly was so special about living off carbs – that’s always been the fall back, or poverty, diet. Surely they all knew about the Irish and potatoes?

I looked her up on Wikipedia and found that she lived to the ripe old age of 93, and, interestingly, they state that ‘She ate a simple diet, including butter and eggs’. So, apparently she was wiser than they made her seem, preferring a high quality animal based fat and protein diet rather than the vegan based carb heavy diet they lauded her for. I wonder to what degree her idea of an adequate diet fed into the ‘consensus’ that emerged in the 70s and 80s that a healthy diet was low in fat and animal protein, which we know produced the horrors of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer that we all know of.

And what on earth were they blathering on about when they were so impressed with her being ‘female in a male world’? There were many many female scientists, last century and in the preceding one, and maybe all through history. This is how the Beeb works though. It seeks every opportunity, using dramas, current affairs, history or comedies, to depict or imply that our society was difficult for women somehow, when this is not the case at all. Widdowson is a perfectly good example of this. She was a woman and became a fellow of the Royal Society, as did many others. You can see from this article that includes 91 female scientists, that women have been involved in and advanced a huge array of scientific disciplines, and been properly credited for their skills, achievements and brains in any number of ways. And after a simple two second search I found the Wikipedia page for Female Members of the Royal Society, which is as long as your arm! Why is it that organisations like the BBC promote such dishonesties? Oh yes, I know – they want to ‘educate, inform and entertain’ the populace into thinking that men have oppressed women, when this is no more the case than that women have oppressed men. Undoubtedly there are vast numbers of unnamed and unacknowledged men and women who nevertheless gave good service in their field of work as well as the famous ones. Fortunately we can now dismiss this bit of mental and social manipulation for what it is – propaganda. It is perfectly easy to cancel ones TV Licence, and stop funding this sort of socially damaging stuff. I stopped paying them to make propaganda years ago.

Helen Sharma, the chemist and astronaut who brought Elsie Widdowson’s life to our attention in this programme stated that when she, in her 20s, was the only woman in a team of Russian cosmonauts, her sex was not a significant feature of her work, as she just thought of herself as herself, not as her sex. Yup, that’s correct: Only the sexists think about gender the whole time. The rest of us get on and do what we do, and are all the more decent as a result, despite the BEEBs best efforts to make us otherwise.

While I am having my rant here I would like to mention that prior to Widdowson’s work, the dentist Weston A Price  published his great work Nutrition And Physical Degeneration which, to my knowledge, has only been properly acknowledged in recent years for the profound insights into human nutritional science. He too valued butter and eggs and logged in meticulous detail the ravages of diets of refined carbohydrate on the health of peoples around the globe who adopted ‘the displacing foods of commerce’ and ditched their traditional local diets. Indeed I believe this book to be one of the ten most important books ever written. You can buy it here.

 

4 comments

  1. I despair at the BBC’s failure to deal with the particular issue of addictive HFCS rather than sugar in general and almost total shut-down on the shameful TTIP deal which would have brought us unstoppable deregulated food products from the USA, along with fines in the billions for refusing toxic items from the likes of Monsanto. I have changed to World Service which seems to be less cowed than R4 and of course less inward-looking. There was even a reference to large numbers of Europeans giving up bread recently. I’m currently reading David Perlmutter’s ‘Brain Maker’ and some way though Andrew Wakefied’s defence of his similar MMR findings regarding disturbed gut function in relation to Autism. Keep ranting Afifah. ;-)

    1. Thanks man, I will do my best.
      I hope you are enjoying the books you mention. Is the Wakefield book ‘Callous Disregard’? It is an excellent book in my estimation!

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