Talking Point with Gazette chief reporter Ron Harris

Seven a day? Aye, right...as long as that includes those dietary staples Mini Cheddars and chips for oor Ron!
Seven a day? Aye, right...as long as that includes those dietary staples Mini Cheddars and chips for oor Ron!
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Find out what oor Ron thinks constitutes a healthy diet!

Ye dinnae want tae be big-heided aboot they things but at least wan Lanarkian has got the jump oan a shower o’ very highly-paid scientists and health ‘experts’.

You probably noticed in the national news that yon aforementioned boffins, efter years guddling awa’ in their labs and spending squillions o’ quids o’ your taxes, have come up wae the wizard wheeze that, instead o’ eating five fruit and veg a day, we should be sending SEVEN varieties o’ yon healthly foodstuffs doon oor thrapples daily.

Weel, at first glance, this micht seem a bit o’ a challenge tae us proud members o’ the Caledonian race who already seem tae regard chips, fritters and tattie crisps as counting towards yon daily target.

Whitever, it noo appears that the ‘ five-a-day’ was a bit o’ an underestimate and noo SEVEN is whit is required tae live a lang and healthy life – perhaps even lang enough tae see Motherwell win the European Cup!

When yon glad tidings were broadcast oan the telly, ah reacted wae a superior snort o’ derision.

Why, dae ah no’ ken at least wan wee Lanark wumman who has already far exceeded their new target and was getting through TEN fruit and veg a day oan a regular basis!

Noo, as ah have an awfy high personal regard for this wumman, ah’ll no’ be naming her here for whit should become obvious reasons.

Y’see, being in her eighties, she decided it was high time tae lay aff all the Tunnock Teacakes, fags and sweet sherry which is, as we all ken, the normal diet o’ your average Scottish pensioner.

She joined up wae wan o’ the toon’s health clubs and followed – so she thought – their dietary advice tae the letter.

It was only after her daughter inquired as tae the beneficial effects o’ this new regime that the alarm bells started ringing that she’d taken yon advice TOO literally.

“Ah’m feeling a lot better,” she reported tae her darling offspring, adding, “Mind you, ah’m spending aboot two hours a day in the cludgie.”

She then added that her other problem was ”just FINDING five different vegetables and five different fruits tae eat every day”.

Medical mystery solved; her daughter explained tae her that it was five-a-day o’ BAITH fruit and veg and no’ EACH.

Noo, although few o’ us are scientists, we’ve the evidence o’ oor ain eyes and lives tae suggest yon fruit-and-veg fanatics might just be talking, if ye’ll excuse the pun, mince.

Here’s the facts: we’re forever being telt that we are living longer and longer and there are aboot ten times the number o’ folk reaching the grand auld age o’ a hunner noo than there were fifty years back.

Okay, so it goes that today’s hunner-year-aulds were brought up in a world afore onywan had even HEARD o’ ‘health foods’ or a ‘healthy diet’.

Naw; they were o’ yon pre-war generation brought up oan stovies, mince-and-tatties and fish suppers, no tae mention the pies, jube-jubes and Paris buns.

Even back in the Seventies, in mah youth, oor food intake wid gie wan o’ yon ‘dietary experts’ advising the school meals service today a heart-attack and a rather ironic early death.

Whit you see striding lithely doon the High Street tae his work every day – wae wan single absence in five years due tae ill health – is the product o’ double haggis suppers oot o’ McKnight’s chipper, Wallace Bakery sausage rolls and endless 20p sweetie ‘mix-ups’ oot o’ Gemmell’s.

Dootless, shareholders in the Andrex company and the health food freaks o’ this world wid celebrate us all being oan a seven-a-day a diet but, ask yirsels, wid a longer life be WORTH living withoot a wee naughty treat every noo and again?

Naw; haund us ower yon lovely big, hot bridie; ah’ll have a mango and some broccoli for mah efters. Honest!