Health & Food Safety

There are many diseases and infections that people get through the food they eat, and food safety, particularly but not exclusively in less-developed countries, is a major challenge.
 

Scientists in the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics have discovered a previously unknown mechanism behind how the fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene promotes obesity.  Their findings may have important implications for future therapeutic strategies to combat obesity.

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A consortium brought together by the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food has received a major award from the Wellcome Trust as part of their 'Our Planet, Our Health' programme.

The project will look at the consequences of the global increase in the consumption of meat, dairy and other animal-sourced foods and how it affects the environment and human health.  It will focus on how to achieve changes towards more sustainable and healthy diets.

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Obesity in school-age children may be having a significant effect on the health of their hearts, an Oxford University study suggests.

The researchers show that obese children and adolescents have several risk factors for heart disease – including raised blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels, and a thickening of the heart muscle – compared with normal weight children.

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A global switch to diets that rely less on meat and more on fruit and vegetables could save up to 8 million lives by 2050, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by two thirds, and lead to healthcare-related savings and avoided climate damages of $1.5 trillion (US).

 

The study, published today in PNAS, is the first to estimate both the health and climate change impacts of moving towards more plant-based diets for all major world regions.

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Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, Department of Nutrition, Food Studies and Public Health, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development,  New York University (2016-2017)

 

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On 2nd March 2017 the BBC World Service and Wellcome Collection hosted a panel discussion exploring whether vegetarianism is a sustainable option globally. The event was recorded in front of a live audience and will be broadcast on the World Service in April.

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Article courtesy of: Susan Jebb and the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences

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Dr Tara Garnett (Food Climate Research Network) commented on the news that the world's first lab-grown burger, grown from cow stem cells, was eaten, live on the Internet, yesterday.

She said decision-makers needed to look beyond technological solutions. "We have a situation where 1.4 billion people in the world are overweight and obese, and at the same time one billion people worldwide go to bed hungry," she said. "That's just weird and unacceptable. The solutions don't just lie with producing more food but changing the systems of supply and access and affordability, so not just more food but better food gets to the people who need it."

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Earlier this year, the Environmental Change Institute’s (ECI’s) food systems group held the First Oxford Meeting on Food System Impact Valuation. The Meeting, on the 11 and 12 of April 2017, brought together representatives from some of the world’s largest food companies, civil society, and academia, to discuss standardised and pre-competitive measurement and monetary valuation of environmental, social and health impacts from food systems.
 
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