SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Erenstein, Olaf, Poole, Nigel and Donovan, Jason (2022) 'Role of staple cereals in human nutrition: Separating the wheat from the chaff in the infodemics age.' Trends in Food Science and Technology, 119. pp. 508-513.

Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0).

Download (510kB) | Preview


Background: Staple cereals always have been important dietary components, yet recent debates on their role in human diets are riddled with myths and misinformation. Scope and approach: This article examines the informational controversies, particularly about wheat, and reviews the evidence. The discussion centers on three nutritional cereal debates: i) ‘empty calories’, ii) over-consumption, and iii) how ‘free-from’ fads confound dietary transitions. Key findings and conclusions: This article makes two principal points, that i) advances in nutrition are a complex, slow process, and that ii) they can be easily confounded and undone by misinformation. Hence we suggest that more consumer-oriented work is needed—including behavioral approaches and political economy—in order to improve the quality of information, communication and dietary decision making. There is a clear need to tackle nutritional misinformation given the costs of inaction and the need to formulate a coherent agri-nutrition agenda.

Item Type: Journal Article
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Interdisciplinary Studies > Centre for Development, Environment and Policy
ISSN: 09242244
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2022 17:25
Funders: Other

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item