Liz Else interviews Clare Shaw, author of Cancer: The power of food, in New Scientist:
As a child in Blackpool, Clare Shaw loved fish and chips, and her mother’s good old-fashioned cooking. Her first degree was in nutrition and dietetics at the University of London. And she stayed in London for her first job at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, working in general dietetics. She joined the Royal Marsden cancer hospital in 1987, and went on to become chief dietitian there in 1992. Her book Cancer: The power of food has just been published by Hamlyn.
Has science needed some persuading of the relationship between diet and cancer?
Yes. Conclusive evidence has been very hard to get, which made them cautious about false messages or easy sound bites. As a result they have been rather behind in talking to the public.
What do you think about the quality of advice out there about food and cancer?
A lot of the information that is aimed at the general public is not necessarily based on good scientific evidence. People find it difficult to know what is reliable and what is really just someone’s idea, just spin. Lots of people think they know about diet, so they’re all jumping on the bandwagon. Often messages about healthy eating do not fit politically with what everyone wants, whether that be the food industry, government or whomever.
More here, including a short guide for better eating.