Awareness of lifestyle risk factors and evidence-based preventative lifestyle interventions may soon have a greater influence in medical education.
“The health landscape of the UK has dramatically changed over the last 30 or 40 years and I think the bulk of what I see as a GP now – almost 80% – is in some way driven by our collective lifestyles”. Dr Rangan Chatterjee. (BBC Radio 4’s The Food Programme).
Dillon, S. (2018). We learn nothing about nutrition, claim medical students. London: BBC Health News / BBC Radio 4’s Food Programme, March 25th 2018.
Obesity-Related Hospital Admissions
Hospital admissions involving obesity as a likely factor have more than doubled in England during the past four years (617,000 admissions in 2016-17, up from 292,000 in 2012-13); although some of the increase in obesity-related admissions may be due to better recording of obesity. Around 26% of adults are classed as obese.
Obesity-related hospital admissions ‘double in four years’. London: BBC Health News, April 4th 2018.
This relates to:
Statistics on obesity, physical activity and diet – England, 2018. [Online]: NHS Digital, April 4th 2018.
Cancer Attributable to Modifiable Risk Factors
Cancer Research UK estimates that over a third of all cases of cancer are avoidable, with excess weight playing a likely role in 6.3% of all cancer cases (an increase from 5.5% in 2011). Smoking has declined (relatively) as an imputed cause of cancers.
Therrien, A (2018). Rise in cancers ’caused by weight’. London: BBC Health News, March 23rd 2018.
This relates to:
Brown, KF. Rumgay, H. [and] Dunlop, C. [et al] (2018). The fraction of cancer attributable to modifiable risk factors in England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland, and the United Kingdom in 2015. British Journal of Cancer. March 23rd 2018. [Epub ahead of print].
“Obesity is set to overtake smoking as the biggest preventable cause of cancer in UK women by 2043”. Cancer Research UK.
Obesity ‘to be linked to more female cancers’ than smoking. London: BBC Health News, September 24th 2018.
Cancer Risk From Red and Processed Meats
Consuming small amounts of red and processed meat (one rasher of bacon per day) can increase the risk of bowel cancer?
A rasher of bacon a day ‘ups cancer risk’. London: BBC Health News, April 17th 2019.
More on Processed Foods
Possibly of interest:
Gallagher, J. (2019). Ultra-processed foods ‘make you eat more’. London: BBC Health News, May 16th 2019.
Gallagher, J. (2018). Ultra-processed foods ‘linked to cancer’. London: BBC Health News, February 15th 2018.
Regarding two BMJ papers:
Gallagher, J. (2019). Ultra-processed food linked to early death. London: BBC Health News, May 30th 2019.
Chief medical officer considers recommending tax on unhealthy food. London: BBC Health News, May 20th 2019.
Hippocampal-Dependent Appetitive Control Impaired by Exposure to Western-Style Diet
Western-style diets can impair appetitive control in humans; perhaps promoting over-eating:
Western-style diet may impair memory and encourage unhealthy eating. London: NHS Digital; Behind the Headlines, February 19th 2020.
Health Foundation: Healthy Lives Strategy
See also, the Health Foundation’s broad overview of the social determinants of health inequalities:
Lovell, N. [and] Bibby, J. (2018). What makes us healthy? An introduction to the social determinants of health. London: Health Foundation, April 2018.
Possibly of interest, “Britain’s Fat Fight”, with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, on BBC One:
Fearnley-Whittingstall, H. (2018). Britain’s Fat Fight: why we’re losing. London: BBC Health News, April 24th 2018.
Concerning the Soft Drinks Industry Levy
The Soft Drinks Industry Levy (aka the “Sugar Tax”) on sugary soft drinks is now in force in the UK.
Triggle, N. (2018). Soft drink sugar tax starts, but will it work? London: BBC Health News, April 6th 2018.
A “long view” style BBC Radio 4: The Food Programme presentation examines the emerging science and the history of campaigning / policy development behind this tax.
Pym, H. (2018). Sugar tax: There’s more to come in the war on obesity. London: BBC Health News, April 6th 2018.
Further BBC News / Institute for Fiscal Studies analysis:
Smith, K. (2018). Sugar tax: will paying more for fizzy drinks and alcohol make us healthier? London: BBC News / BBC Health News, April 5th 2018.
Earlier positive assessments of the tax:
Pym, H. (2018). Sugar tax is already producing results. London: BBC Health News, March 12th 2018.
Concerning an Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) report:
Triggle, N. (2019). Is it time to treat sugar like smoking? London: BBC Health News, June 4th 2019.
Dental surgeons urge England’s schools to go sugar-free. London: BBC Health News, August 15th 2019.
Public Health Interventions
Possibly of interest, a systematic review of local authority commissioned public health preventative interventions in the UK:
Full Text Link (Note: This article requires a suitable Athens password, a journal subscription or payment for access).
White, P. Skirrow, H. [and] George, A. [et al] (2018). A systematic review of economic evaluations of local authority commissioned preventative public health interventions in overweight and obesity, physical inactivity, alcohol and illicit drugs use and smoking cessation in the United Kingdom. Journal of Public Health. February 16th 2018. [Epub ahead of print].
The BBC’s BMI Calculator:
BMI and obesity: Where are you on the UK fat scale? London: BBC Health News, April 24th 2018.
Some related debate about the value of BMI as an obesity measure:
Roxby, P. (2018). Can we trust BMI to measure obesity? London: BBC Health News, April 26th 2018.
Additional factors potentially influencing weight gain:
Brewer, K. (2018). Five things you might be surprised affect weight. London: BBC Health News, April 28th 2018.
BAME / Ethnic Dimension?
Ashamu, L. (2020). ‘Black people need to be included in BMI research’: Is BMI an appropriate measure of health for everyone? London: BBC Health News, July 31st 2020.
Dementia Risk Factors
Possibly of background interest, regarding cardiovascular health:
Therrien, A (2018). Unfit in middle age: are you doomed? London: BBC Health News, June 14th 2018.
Beneficial legacy of the local Wakefield TAP (Three Area Project) programme:
Triggle, N. (2018). Child obesity: has one city found a solution? London: BBC Health News, July 25th 2018.
Unhealthy High Streets
The UK’s top three unhealthiest High Streets are calculated to be:
Ives, L. (2018). UK’s ‘unhealthiest’ High Streets revealed. London: BBC Health News, November 2nd 2018.
Progress regardless of lower than expected public health funding:
Public health ‘improving under councils despite cuts’. London: BBC Health News, March 2nd 2019.
Eating, Drinking, Smoking and Exercise Habits Among the Scottish
Charts from the Scottish Health Survey, which measured the wellbeing of people living in Scotland:
Are Scots becoming more or less healthy? Scotland: BBC Health News / BBC Scotland News, September 24th 2019.
NHS Recommendations for Minimum Sleep: a Component of Healthy Lifestyles Advice?
Poor sleep hygiene can raise the risk of dementia, diabetes and depression.
Ministers may advise on how much sleep people need. London: BBC Health News, July 13th 2019.
Related information and quiz:
Gallagher, J. Buchanan, R. [and] Gill, V (2019). Body clock: what makes you tick? London: BBC Health News, July 12th 2019.