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Food Junkies Podcast

Jan 4, 2022

Zoe Harcombe is a researcher, author, blogger, and public speaker in the field of diet and health. Her particular areas of interest and expertise are public health dietary guidelines (especially dietary fat), nutrition, and obesity.

Zoe has a BA and MA from Cambridge University (economics/maths) and in 2016, she was awarded a Ph.D. in public health nutrition. Zoe’s thesis title was “An examination of the randomized controlled trial and epidemiological evidence for the introduction of dietary fat recommendations in 1977 and 1983: A systematic review and meta-analysis.”

Zoe is known for

1) Being the first person to examine the evidence base for the dietary fat guidelines at the time of their introduction (US 1977 and UK 1983). Discovering that not only was the randomized controlled trial evidence NON-supportive of the introduced guidelines but that fewer than 2,500 sick men had been studied in the process.

2) Coining the phrase ‘the Eatbadly plate’, which became ‘the Eatbadly guide’  in March 2016.

3) Devoting 7 chapters of my 2010 obesity book to dissecting calories generally and the 3,500 calorie myth particularly.

4) “Why do you overeat? When all you want is to be slim”. This became the title of her 2004 (revised 2013) book, which is still unique in explaining physical reasons for overeating and how to overcome these.

5) Journal article dissection: Zoe receives requests from all over the world (many from my own heroes) asking if I can dissect a particular paper, which has led to daft media headlines e.g. margarine is better than butter.

In this episode:

Zoe’s personal and professional journey

The Harcombe Diet

Addressing physical and psychological craving

How to eat to nourish ourselves

PCOS and food

Volume eating

Observations of success

Signature question

Follow Zoe:




PCOS 'special report' ( I hope it's of interest to you and others.

Here are the two pieces of paper - they don't pull any punches, but then addiction doesn't either!


Zoë & Andy Harcombe. “The Harcombe Diet®: Lunch box recipes.” Columbus Publishing. (2014).

Zoë Harcombe. “The Harcombe Diet® 3-Step Plan.” Hodder Paperbacks. (2014).Zoë Harcombe. “Why do you overeat? When all you want is to be slim.” Columbus Publishing. (2013) [First published by Accent Press 2004).

Zoë Harcombe. “Stop Counting Calories & Start Losing Weight.” Columbus Publishing. (2011) [First published by Accent Press 2008).

Zoë & Andy Harcombe. “The Harcombe Diet®: The Recipe Book.” Columbus Publishing. (2011) [First published by Accent Press 2008).

Zoë Harcombe. “The Harcombe Diet® for Men.”Columbus Publishing. (2011).

Zoë Harcombe. “The Obesity Epidemic: What caused it? How can we stop it?” Columbus Publishing. (2010).

The content of our show is educational only. It does not supplement or supersede the professional relationship and direction of your healthcare provider. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified mental health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition, substance use disorder, or mental health concern.