Dr Michael Dixon explains the power of community change when it comes to food


In the latest video by the College of Medicine and ITN productions, Dr Michael Dixon explains to presenter Natasha Kaplinsky, OBE, the importance of healthy eating and how community change can have a big impact.

Dr Dixon explains how healthy eating can be used to reverse the effects of illness. He said: “We know that what we eat is the biggest determinate of whether we fall ill or not. We know that 75% of heart disease is preventable, 25% of cancer and that some of the increase in cancer and heart disease we’re seeing is due to our poorer diet.”

He explains that the quality of soil can impact the quality of our food, and therefore our health. He said: “By putting chemicals in the soil such as fertilisers and pesticides, we’re killing off the bugs and that reduces the biome. It changes the taste in our food, it also changes the nutritional value and that feeds back into our biome so there’s an enormous connection.”

The interview ends with Dr Dixon outlining three things to counter the rise of obesity. Firstly, national policy such as the tax on sugary drinks, secondly, social prescription to understand the individual’s needs and thirdly, community change. He highlights the importance of the latter, explaining that Finland was able to half their levels of childhood obesity in five years by ensuring that its child and health services communicated effectively with each other.

This video is forms part of a series launched by the College of Medicine, watch the full video.

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