My books

Food-how-to-make-a-meal-of-it2-211x300Food, and how to make a healthy meal of it

A guide to eating and drinking well

Food is amazing. It can make you feel fantastic and full of vitality, or downright sick. It can be an intensely pleasurable or utterly miserable affair. The best food – and drink – should create a divinely delicious experience that also makes you feel great and promotes your good health. It’s not too much to ask.

 This book guides you towards the food and drink that fit that criteria. It is a practical guide to what’s best to have for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and drinks. It is packed full of facts on what (and what not) to eat and drink, and why. It will tell you what the food and drink you choose can do for you, and to you. Each chapter covers the most common conundrums faced by the discerning consumer, such as:

  • Is margarine really healthier than butter?
  • Which oil should I use for cooking?
  • Is a breakfast bar really a breakfast?
  • Is a cooked breakfast ever a healthy option?
  • Don’t eggs and meat contain cholesterol, and isn’t cholesterol bad for you?
  • Should I cut down on the carbs? And what is the glycaemic index, anyway?
  • How do I avoid the post-lunch slump?
  • What should I pack in my lunch box?
  • How about dairy foods?
  • Should I avoid tinned food?
  • Why is oily fish good for me? What if it’s farmed? Or organic, smoked or all three?
  • How can I get vitamin D when there is no sunshine and it’s winter?
  • What are the best snack foods, and why?
  • Is it true that chocolate can be good for you?
  • Should I worry about fluoride being added to the water supply? How about chlorine?
  • Should I drink decaffeinated coffee?
  • What’s the best option when it comes to alcohol?


And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. The in-depth information you’ll find in this book is evidence-based and fully referenced. I have sifted through the marketing and myth to bring you the most robust scientific research into the effects of food and drink on your health and your risk of avoiding – or developing – chronic disease.

Food, and How to Make a Healthy Meal of it is also a celebration of real food and an antidote to so many unsubstantiated dietary regimes of joyless abstinence. Enjoy.

Indie Book Bargains

Food-how-to-make-a-meal-of-itI Wish I Hadn’t Eaten That

Published by Hay House

Based on 17 years of experience as a nutritional therapist, this book is about the consultation, the client and the results. I describe the twenty most common symptoms clients want to address*, and my approach to dealing with those symptoms through diet. The key, of course, is to discover the cause underlying each health problem, and that is precisely what this book will help you do. It will then guide you to the dietary changes required to make those symptoms go away.

*lack of energy ~ weight gain ~ bloating ~ poor memory and concentration ~ mild depression ~ headaches ~ mood swings ~ food cravings ~ acne ~ constipation ~ diarrhoea ~ poor circulation ~ insomnia ~ premenstrual syndrome ~ period pain ~ dry skin and eyes ~ aching joints ~ skin rashes ~ water retention ~ frequent colds.

Comments on Amazon include:

This book is well written and the separate chapters for each condition make it easy for reference. Sheds light on many health conditions and how they can improve just by amending diet and avoiding certain foods. It is useful for easy identification of what foods may be causing a problem for you and what to do about it. It is like a light coming on when you start to make the link between what you have been eating and recurring health complaints.

There is so much rubbish out there on nutrition, written by people who have no idea what they’re talking about. This is not one of them.

This book is well written and easy to read. The logical threads mean you are not toiling through unrelated chapters just to get to what interests you. It doubles as an informative read and a useful reference. Thank you Maria for writing a book that ordinary folk can use!

From the introduction:

I sometimes think of my clients as the walking wounded. More often than not, they look fine enough. Indeed, they don’t usually have any diagnosed medical condition as such. They hold down jobs – sometimes very important ones at that – and bring up children whilst running busy households. Their juggling skills are heroic. Most – but by no means all – of my clients are women and their narratives reveal extraordinary multi-tasking skills. But hardy as they appear, inside they are struggling with exhaustion, stress and anxiety about their health…

Nutritional therapy can be extraordinarily effective. It does require effort; the client does all the work, based upon recommendations made. But the pay-off for this approach is empowerment for the client, not to mention results…

This book will help you identify the underlying dietary origins of your particular cluster of symptoms and work on those origins through nutritional means. It is utterly pointless to look for remedies for symptoms without first identifying the reasons they arose…

Dealing with the same symptoms over and over meant that, in time, I came to identify the most likely diet-related causes of those symptoms. Each chapter of this book (apart from the Meal Ideas chapter) I devoted to one of those causes. I have outlined exactly what I as a nutritional therapist would do if you were my client suffering from one or more of the ‘top 20’ symptoms. I will guide you to making the right dietary changes for you by first identifying the underlying factors affecting your health, and then working out how you need to adapt your diet to have a therapeutic effect – that is, to eliminate or reduce your symptoms. I may suggest tests you can have carried out privately, or supplements which can help boost the effects of dietary change.


Nutrition in InstitutionsNutrition in Institutions

Published by Wiley-Blackwell

The importance of good nutrition for individual health and well-being is widely recognised, yet for a significant number of people who rely on institutions for food and nutrition, this importance has not always been a primary consideration. People, therefore, may find themselves consuming food they would not ordinarily choose to eat. In recent years, there have been major advances in the quality of catering in some areas, particularly schools. Other institutions which have not been thrust into the media spotlight have fared less well in terms of enthusiasm and commitment. This insightful book looks in detail at five institutions: schools, hospitals, care homes for the elderly, prisons and the armed forces.

All public sector bodies, especially those that serve the most vulnerable in our society (for example, children and especially looked-after children, the sick, the elderly, the disadvantaged), have a duty to provide appetising, healthy and nutritious meals, consistent with expert advice. Appetising, healthy food can lead to faster patient recovery times, less malnutrition, better educational attainment, less disruptive behaviour, higher productivity and less food waste.

The Department of Health, 2005.