We welcome Professor Mike Gibney, Director of the Institute for Food and Health, UCD, author of the recent book, Something to Chew on: Challenging Controversies in Food and Health.
Professor Gibney sent this abstract:
"This presentation will look at food and health from the point of view of both nutrition and food safety. As regards the latter, I will cover the myth that things 'natural' are always superior to those that are synthetic. In all aspects of life we trade risk with benefit and this is also true of the human food chain. Risk is considered and if below certain levels, is accepted and the process of defining that risk will be presented. The 'natural' versus synthetic' debate will be explored in relation to organic agriculture and to genetically modified foods.
"It will also extend into the whole area of the slow food (locavore) movement. Given the huge importance of obesity, the nutrition component will focus on that area. I will show that obesity is not a recent phenomenon but has always accompanied affluence throughout history. Trying to explain the modern epidemic on modern root causes is popular but wrong. Finally, I will look at the issue of "nature" and "nurture" in relation to obesity which has a heritability of up to 75% which compares with values of 69% for depression and 53% for alcoholism."
As we will be celebrating our 10th birthday on the night, we hope you can join us for some mulled wine and an interesting presentation and discussion!