Book Review: Talking about Food

 Jenny McLeish
The Maternity Alliance

Star Rating: 4/5

This publication aims to be a practical guide for health professionals and tell them how to give healthy eating advice to disadvantaged pregnant women.

It is timely, as the government’s Healthy Start programme will replace the Welfare Food Scheme from 2006, and eligible women will only be able to register for the scheme with a GP, midwife or health visitor, writes Dawn Peet and Jo Pearce.

This 21-page guide provides a background to the links between nutrition and low birth weight, the barriers facing low-income families trying to improve dietary habits, methods of good practice, a toolkit for assessing dietary intakes and research evidence on the impacts of nutritional advice.

It is well presented and easy to read, but assumes the reader has sound nutritional knowledge and does not provide a comprehensive list of further information and resources.

We wonder how many professionals will have the time to discuss diet with each family in this much detail. The Maternity Alliance has, however, produced a comprehensive and informative guide which is an excellent resource for midwives.

Dawn Peet is a midwife and Jo Pearce is a nutritionist for Sharrow Surestart in Sheffield

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