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Digital Subscriptions > Healthy Magazine > Oct/Nov 2019 > ARE YOU REALLY WHAT YOU EAT?


It’s a familiar message. But how much does your diet really impact on your health? We delve into the latest science

Even if you’re doing your best to eat right, you may sometimes wonder how much difference it’s really making to your risk of disease and weight gain. As scientists understand more about genetics, we’re getting a better idea of what’s encoded in our DNA – everything from a propensity to cardiovascular disease to a tendency to crave stodgy foods. So is it still worth making such an effort to eat well?


‘Diet plays a huge role in health – over 50 per cent of the difference between people [in respect of which diseases they get] can be explained by diet,’ says Professor Tim Spector, a genetic epidemiologist at King’s College London and author of The Diet Myth. ‘We can see that as diets in different countries change, disease changes too. In the UK, we eat the most ultra-processed foods of any country in Europe, and that’s probably why this is also the sickest country in Europe.’ One recent US study showed over 80,000 new cancer cases every year could be attributed directly to poor diet.

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About Healthy Magazine

Welcome to the October/November issue of healthy. Our nutrition issue is here and in the latest edition, we look at why healthy diet is important for your physical and mental health. Plus, we’ve got some delicious seasonal recipes for you to try. We’ve all heard the phrase: ‘You are what you eat’, but to what extent is that true? Writer Charlotte Haigh attempts to give a definitive answer in our cover story, by looking at the nutrition tips we can all take to improve our health, despite the differences in our genetic makeup. In our recipe section, we’ve got a range of delicious seasonal dishes that are perfect for early autumn, along with immunity-boosting recipes to see you through the colder months. We also revisit the fermenting trend with some tips for having a go yourself. And that’s not all. In addition to our nutrition content, writer Laura Potter takes a thoughtful look at the potentially negative impact of fertility reporting, while controversial expert Ronald Purser gives powerful arguments against mindfulness in our ‘Fresh thinking’ franchise. Find all this and more in the new issue of healthy.