09:00 | Welcome introduction: ‘Man must cease attributing his problems to this environment’ by Professor Jonathan Pinkney, Professor of Endocrinology and Diabetes and Honorary Consultant Physician in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Weight Management at University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust
At a time when climate change jeopardises agricultural productivity, the demographics of health are changing with many humans living longer, populations expected to top 11 billion or more by 2100, and long-term health and social care costs meaning the sustainability of these improvements cannot be taken for granted. Jonathan will showcase a number of creative research projects at the University of Plymouth in this strategically important area of healthcare.
09:15 | ‘Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are’ by Professor Jonathan Pinkney
The Earlybird study provides an opportunity to understand how excessive weight gain can adversely affect children’s development and health prospects. A major focus of the study has been investigating the childhood origins of diabetes, known as ‘prediabetes’, that reveals a good example of how genes and behaviour interact in the origin of diabetes, showing that behavioural intervention is appropriate for prevention. Discover the numerous novel findings that have resulted from the study and more on which interventions can be targeted to maintain the health of children.
09:30 | Group-based behavioural intervention in weight management by Dr Dawn Swancutt, PenARC Research Fellow
Growing obesity levels are a worldwide challenge and they are increasing year on year. In the NHS, specialist weight management services to support weight change intervention are seeing their waiting lists extended from weeks to years, further exacerbated by the Covid pandemic. Group-based behaviour change interventions have been recognised as offering many benefits to reduce waiting times and have specialists support more people, more effectively. Dawn shares more about our current research on group-based behaviour change for people with severe obesity.
09:45 | What does mental health have to do with health behaviour? Reciprocal effects that can’t be overlooked by Professor Adrian Taylor, Professor in Health Services Research
Those with poor mental health have up to 10 year shorter life expectancy, in part due to less healthy lifestyle, and this is more common in areas with higher social deprivation. Adrian was invited as a panel expert to develop evidence-informed exercise and depression Canadian toolkit to accompany national guidelines. He shares insight on how the guidelines go beyond simple prescriptions due to the complex situations of those with poor mental health, and about the efforts put in place in a University of Plymouth study to engage with communities who would not normally participate in research.
10:00 | One-to-one support for health by Dr Tom Thompson, Senior Research Fellow
Key modifiable behaviours like smoking, alcohol consumption, poor diet and low physical activity levels are shown to cluster at higher levels among those of lower socio-economic status, effectively becoming one of the key drivers of increasing health inequalities. Support varies in intensity, is often siloed in approach and often doesn't appeal to or reach those who need it most. Tom presents approaches that have been developed for addressing multiple behaviours and how they interact and influence each other, what behavioural support looks like, the key mechanisms for change, as well as the implications for - and role of - wellbeing and mental health.