|The idea of OrganicAssistant first came to Graham Crisford (Managing Director of the company) while out walking in Scotland where he met Dr Walter Yellowlees, a proponent of food produced without the aid of unnecessary additives, pesticides and herbicides. Over lunch, Dr Yellowlees, told Graham of his research into the links between diet and health.
Dr Yellowlees practised as a GP for 33 years in the Highlands of Scotland. He was one of the early believers in the importance of a healthy diet in preventing disease. And has published several books setting out these arguments. In his most recent publication ‘ A Doctor in the Wilderness’ he tries to promote the link between a healthy diet and disease prevention.
“ I have published this book in the belief that my message has, over the years, lost none of its urgency. Indeed the industries, which dominate our farming and food processing, by vast sums spent on advertising, continue to wield immense power over the minds of consumers and producers.
Food and drink, highly processed and degraded by a multitude of additives, consumed by an ever expanding urban-based population inevitably rings a heavy load of degenerative disease. In Scotland, especially, refined sugar and constipation white flour are still consumed in huge quantities. Obesity and diabetes are rife: the overall incidence of cancer increase.
So heavy is the burden of preventable degenerative disease that, in our overwhelmed NHS, waiting lists grow longer. The promotion of health through sound nutrition is still not taught in our medical schools. But consumers, alarmed at the recent disasters of BSE and foot and mouth, are increasingly seeking organically grown produce. In spite of the valiant efforts of the soil association and other organic organisations, fresh organically grown food is yet a tiny fraction of our nourishment: less than one percent of the UK land is organically cultivated. As a result city dwelling populations are increasingly isolated from the realities and challenges of land use for health.
In medicine, the extraordinary success in alleviating suffering by new surgical techniques and by new pharmaceutical products encourages medical students to believe that the pursuit of health will be best achieved by the surgeons knife or by the latest pill. I remain convinced that true prevention can only be achieved by examining and promoting the links between diet and health”
Dr W Yellowlees 2001