Diet and nutrition is an issue which is continuing to dominate the agendas of media, governments, NGOS and food and drink industries around the world. Whilst there are many different complex dietary and nutritional considerations across countries and regions, according to the World Health Organization, people of all age groups, regions and countries are today affected by Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs). In fact, it estimates the NCDs kill 41 million people each year, equivalent to 71% of all deaths globally (8).
Noncommunicable – or chronic – diseases are described as being diseases of long duration and generally slow progression and, according to the World Health Organization, tobacco use, physical inactivity, the harmful use of alcohol and unhealthy diets are factors which increase the risk of dying from a NCD. In China, over the past three decades, the mortality rate of chronic NCDs has increased dramatically, accompanied by a continuous decline in maternal and child mortality. According to the Lancet, this change in China is mainly the result of economic growth and improvement in education (9).
In this section,we focus on some of the noncommunicable diseases including obesity and diabetes. We also address the importance of dental health in preventing oral disease an issue very relevant in China – the fourth National Oral Health Survey in 2015 highlighted that 5-year-old Chinese children had a 70.9% chance of tooth decay, an increase of 5.8% points in 10 years (10).
The overwhelming scientific consensus points to obesity being the result of eating more calories than we burn off through activity and exercise.Read more
Despite what some people may think sugar hasn’t been established as a cause of type 2 diabetes (15).Read more
Sugars are a type of ‘fermentable carbohydrate’ - this also includes some starches.Read more