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The Diet Myth: the real science behind what we eat

A new book by Tim Spector, Professor of Genetic Epidemiology at King’s College London, examining the role of genetics and microbes in our diets reveals surprising truths about the science behind what we eat and how our bodies digest food.

At a time when an increasing proportion of the world’s population is suffering from obesity and its related health issues, The Diet Myth offers an important and fascinating perspective on this global epidemic. Because of the way in which our attitudes to food have changed over the last few decades, we are no longer exposed to the very microbes that have always been an invisible but essential part of our physiology. This can impact on how our bodies digest food, absorb calories, provide vitamins and enzymes and upon the health of our immune system.

Prompted by his own experiences and drawing on the latest cutting-edge science, case studies, and his team's pioneering research, Professor Spector explores the hidden world of the microbiome, and demystifies the common misconceptions about fat, calories, vitamins and nutrients. Only by understanding what makes our own personal microbes tick and interact with our bodies can we overcome the confusion of modern diets and nutrition and regain the microbe diversity of our recent ancestors.

Professor Tim Spector is an Honorary Consultant Physician at Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust, and Director of the TwinsUK Registry. He has won several academic awards and published over 700 academic papers, many of which relate directly to nutrition and the causes of obesity. He has appeared in numerous TV documentaries and is often consulted in UK and international media on his team’s research. Since 2014 he has been leading the largest UK's largest open-source science project British Gut to understand the microbial diversity of the human gut. Tim Spector’s book on epigenetics, Identically Different, was longlisted for the Wellcome Trust Prize and shortlisted for the Transmission Prize.