James Wong advises students on how to eat better

  • Tuesday, February 27, 2018

James Wong, a Kew-trained botanist, science writer and London broadcaster advised the Department of Life Sciences students on how to improve the health benefits of food.

He provided guidance from his latest book, How to Eat Better about the three main ways to naturally improve the nutrients in food.  He advised that by making small changes in selecting fruit and vegetable varieties, in how fruit and vegetables are stored, and how they are cooked will boost nutritional value.

He said ‘You can make any food into a superfood. The key to finding and improving nutritional benefits in fruit and vegetables is in their genetics and their contents. As a botanist obsessed with food, it is exciting how you can radically alter the chemical compositions of crops, even when they are sitting on your kitchen counter’.

In choosing food varieties, he gave an example of how selecting kale over iceberg lettuce results in having a higher nutritional value with 30% more vitamin K, 40% more vitamin C, and 50% more of Vitamin A.  For storage, he explained that by placing mushrooms on a windowsill, they will be exposed to sunlight which increases their Vitamin D content.  For cooking, he explained how the antioxidants in blueberries can be increased by heating them up for a few minutes.

James Wong is an internationally best-selling author and his new book How to Eat Better, provides simple tweaks to improve nutritional value of food with eighty recipes to put the theory into practice.

The Department of Life Sciences offers outstanding undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Nutrition and Health and Nutrition and Metabolic Disorders.