LUNCHBOX

Simon Moore, navigational officer Smoked mackerel salad, crepe with peaches, Grand Marnier and cream, a glass of cola, and a hot chocolate topped with whipped cream

"Fresh foods are in really short supply on board ship, so I like to have plenty of crisp salad and fresh vegetables when I'm on leave," says Simon. According to Juliette Kellow, state registered dietician and associate editor of Slimming Magazine, such a meal would provide him with 1755 calories, of which 57 per cent come from fat, 30 per cent from carbohydrates, 3 per cent from alcohol and 11 per cent from protein.

"Salads are often considered to be the ideal 'healthy' choice when people eat out but they can often be packed with fat, especially if they're smothered in oily salad dressings or served with heaps of coleslaw, potato salad or other mayonnaise-laden accompaniments," says Juliette.

"With this meal, it's not so much the coleslaw and potato salad that contribute to the high fat content, but the smoked mackerel. However, this isn't really bad news because one of the main fats in oily fish is thought to keep the heart healthy, and may help to stop blood clots from forming. Healthy eating guidelines recommend that people should have at least one portion of oily fish a week, such as mackerel, sardines or pilchards.

"The high fat content of this meal is balanced by a low intake of starchy carbohydrates, so having a jacket potato, boiled new potatoes or some crusty granary bread would be a good idea - all without butter, of course.

"The meal is quite high in sugar, most of it coming from the cola, drinking chocolate and crepe. Choosing a diet cola would reduce sugar intake considerably. Having either the dessert or the hot chocolate, but not both, would help to reduce sugar and fat intake"n

Glenda Cooper

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