South Africans are eating themselves to death – top nutritionist

South Africans are eating themselves to death, according to a top nutritionist.

“The truth is people are eating the wrong food, food almost totally devoid of nutrients. And, they are not exercising. Together, this is a fatal combination,” says nutritional consultant Vanessa Ascencao (see 

She was responding to the startling results of the first SA National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey by the Human Sciences Research Council and Medical Research Council which indicates the country’s population is at serious risk of diabetes, strokes, heart attacks and some cancers.

“On a daily basis, people are consuming hyper-processed industrial junk food, sugar, flour, chemicals, additives, MSG, high fructose corn syrup, trans-fats, artificial sweeteners and hormone-laden chemicals. This cycle is ongoing and highly dangerous to our health.

“These are laboratory manufactured foods, not whole foods. They change our body chemistry, they interfere with our hormonal system and they make us crave (like addicts) for more of these chemicals.

“Coupled with the population’s current financial pressures, the rising cost of health care, the lack of resources to make better choices and the lack of nutritional education, unless some drastic changes are made, our sick and unproductive nation will get worse – diabetes, heart disease and obesity will rise,” she added.

She said education was needed to help South Africans make better food choices and those that could, should grow their own produce.

“Go back to the basics. Choose whole, natural, foods such as fresh fruit and vegetables. Avoid processed foods and choose staples like beans, oats, brown rice, seeds and nuts. Go for small amounts of lean protein like eggs, fish and chicken. Drink water and stay away from chemically-laden, artificial drinks. Exercise daily if possible.”

“It’s also becoming increasingly vital to supplement as our diets simply lack nutrients. My choice is multi-nutrient Marcus Rohrer Spirulina.”

  • For further info: call Craig Doonan on 021 785-3683 or 083 463 1827.

About Vanessa Ascencao

Vanessa Ascencao is a dynamic, inspirational and highly qualified nutritional consultant and businesswoman.

She brings a fresh and revolutionary approach to health, wellness and personal growth, having spent 12 years studying, researching and working with some of the greatest minds in metaphysics, nutrition, health and fashion. She’s helped celebrities, business executives and others transform their lives through a unique mind-body approach to health and nutrition.

Vanessa holds a Masters of Science in Nutrition, a Bcom in Marketing, a degree in Fashion Design and consults to top local and international health and natural food companies.

She’s helped scores of South Africans get into shape and improve their lives, including celebrities.

Her work incorporates the latest scientific research, balanced with an acute understanding of human emotion and spirituality.

She is the author of the revolutionary “eco-diet” – an eco-friendly eating and lifestyle plan embracing whole, natural foods, natural supplementation and aimed at achieving the best possible health and wellness from within.

In addition to consulting to business, personalities and the public, Vanessa edits a monthly electronic health newsletter for health company Litha Pharma, writes for various media and is a regular guest on radio and television.

She’s a fervent researcher in the field of nutritional science, reads voraciously, and has a passion for food, life, and family.


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