HC Deb 03 August 1943 vol 391 cc2058-9
1. Mr. Mathers

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he can give any information about the effect upon the nutritional and health standards of persons who make oats and other characteristic Scottish products a prominent feature of their diet?

The Secretary of State for Scotland (Mr. T. Johnston)

Oatmeal is a highly-nutritious grain, rich in some of the essential elements of an adequate diet, namely, vitamin Br, carbohydrates, protein and fat. Like any other item of diet, oatmeal is not generally consumed by itself as a complete food. But as a cereal it is shown by chemical analysis to be four times as rich in fat content as white wheat flour, while oatcakes are ten times as rich in fat content as white bread.

Mr. Mathers

My right hon Friend has given us a very succinct answer, but may I ask him the authority for it and whether that authority is available to us?

Mr. Johnston

Yes, Sir, it is founded on an analysis by Dr. MacCance, published by the Medical Research Council.

Mr. Sloan

Will my right hon. Friend see that that answer is conveyed to the hon. Member for member Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton)?

Mr. Buchanan

Is it not a serious indictment of Scottish affairs that while we have a cheap food of such high quality we have such a high tuberculosis rate?

Mr. Johnston

The two things are not necessarily correlated.

Mr. Thorne

Can the Minister say what makes it so difficult to get Scottish oats in England?

Sir Herbert Williams

The Scots eat them.

Mr. Johnston

I might reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Plaistow (Mr. Thorne) by asking another question: What makes it so impossible to get decent cooking of them down here?

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