Food Chain and Health
Overview of theme
Chronic diseases including heart disease, Type II diabetes, many cancers, acute and chronic gut disorders and some dementias are a major and growing societal and financial concern.
An increasingly ageing population means there is greater prevalence of chronic disease. Pharmaceuticals have made an enormous impact on the treatment and prevention of disease during the 20th century. However, increasingly, there is recognition that the 21st century health model will comprise both preventative life style and therapeutic entities, with diet playing a central role. It is feasible to identify particular food ingredients that may exert beneficial properties and we propose to investigate this by underpinning the research with mechanisms of effect.
An effective approach requires the co-ordination of expertise across agriculture, animal and plant sciences, economics, food policy, bioscience, food science and nutrition and consumer choice.
The University of Reading is developing a multi-disciplinary science programme that is focused on a long term vision that will also generate short- to medium term benefits.
Schools currently involved:
- Animal and Microbial Sciences
- Agriculture, Policy and Development
- Food and Nutritional Sciences
- Plant Sciences
Current cross-disciplinary research and contact:
- Animal nutrition, food composition and health: Professor Ian Givens
- Health benefits and horticultural crops : Professor Philip John
- Factors influencing dietary choice: Dr Richard Tiffin
- The gut as a functional ecosystem: Professor Glenn Gibson
- Milk and its role in health and disease : Professor Ian Givens
- Diet and ageing : Professor Glenn Gibson
- Antioxidants and CVD : Dr David Leake
- Economics and policy issue : Dr Richard Tiffin
- Molecular mechanisms of disease : Dr Kim Watson
- Diet and cognition: Dr Judi Ellis
- Food and performance: Dr Judy Ellis
- Bioactive carbohydrates in health and disease: Professor Bob Rastall
- Paleo diet and health: Professor Christine Williams
- DNA based analysis of ancient gut flora components: Dr Kieran Tuohy
- Microbial safety through the food chain: Dr Bernard Mackey
- Metabolic syndrome, fatty acids: Professor Christine Williams
- Bioactive components from milk: Dr. Paula Jauregi
- Functional food ingredients from agricultural products: Professor Bob Rastall
- Determinants of food quality : Professor Don Mottram
- Biomolecular interactions and food function : Dr. Richard Frazier
- Plant genotype and environment interactions contributing to bioactive components in horticultural crops: Dr Carol Wagstaffli