Expert Opinion | Blog

Vote for Leeds community as friendliest in the UK

Hope you are all keeping safe and well. I have worked for the university in various roles for 20 years and have always been a community person at heart. I have become involved in the campaign to have Eden Crescent, a community close to the university, recognised as one of the UK’s friendliest streets, and hopefully to win the top spot.

How the traditional Sunday lunch could help decrease obesity

We are now not far into the New Year and it is National Obesity Awareness Week. If you have made a new year’s resolution to improve your health, here are a few small nudges that would have a true impact on your family meals. Some of the key components of a healthy meal for a family can be seen in the traditional Sunday meal, portion of potatoes (starchy carbohydrates), a portion of meat (protein), and a heap of veggies.

 Meaghan Christian

Research should be with rather than on service users

At some point near the end of many weight management programmes service-users are asked “Would you mind completing this short survey about the programme”? Questions usually focus on a range of issues such as the usefulness of the programme, staff support, facilities, communication, post-programme goals etc. A rating scale is often presented and instructions given to respond between 1 and 10, with 1 reflecting that you ‘strongly agree’ and 10 ‘strongly disagree’ with a particular statement. We believe it is important to gain the views and options of services-users about their programme experiences.

Dr Kevin Drew
 Rachel Farman
Professor Hayley Fitzgerald
 Sarah Le Brocq

Whole systems approaches: what's the evidence in public health?

The concept of a whole systems approach has seen a dramatic rise in popularity in recent years. Five years ago, you would have struggled to find this terminology, yet today its use seems ubiquitous. Defined as a 'strategic integrated approach to planning and delivering services', a quick internet search demonstrates examples in patient safety, acute kidney injury, public financial management, active lifestyles, youth justice, asthma management, homelessness, dementia care and poverty, to name but a few.

What are the Government doing to tackle obesity?

The role of the government is to set and influence the public health agenda and, where relevant, set expectations and boundaries for associated actors that have a role in supporting healthy behaviours. As such, the government has a responsibility to act through evidence collation, and ultimately, by developing associated policies, campaigns and other work. In the UK, several public health policies have emerged specifically focused on or with reference to obesity.

 Dr Stuart Flint
Professor Ralph Tench
 Gemma Bridge

Should obesity be recognised as a disease?

Currently there is a national debate about whether obesity should be recognised as a disease in the UK. Most people are unaware that obesity is already classified as a disease in the UK, however, is not recognised as a disease. The implications of this is that healthcare settings do not approach, measure or where appropriate treat obesity in the same way that they do other diseases, and healthcare professionals therefore are not mandated for their actions. This debate has been bubbling away for some time, and very recently the Royal College of Physicians announced their backing for obesity to be recognised as a disease.

 Dr Stuart Flint

Living in a frantic world

‘Resilience’ is a term that has become more frequently adopted within our discipline – but what is it? What does this term mean and how can we as individuals, in our frantic day to day existences, benefit from it?


Using research and education to respond to England’s shifting health profile

Dr James Woodall examines the Public Health England report which shows the changing landscape of health in England.

Government’s LGBT Action plan

Professor Jonathan Glazzard, from the Carnegie School of Education, has written a response to the government's LGBT action plan, which was published earlier this week.

The Childhood Obesity Plan: Chapter 2

Pinki Sahota, Professor of Nutrition and Childhood Obesity, looks at the Childhood Obesity plan to mark National Childhood Obesity Week.

 Professor Pinki Sahota

The NHS at 70 Years - Catherine Coates

Catherine Coates is Director of Practice Learning, Health and Social Care for the School of Clinical and Applied Sciences. Here she talks about her time working in the NHS and how it helps in her current role.

Sue Sherwin - the NHS at 70 Years

Sue Sherwin is the Dean of the School of Health and Community Studies at Leeds Beckett University. Here in celebration of 70 years of the NHS, she talks about her time working for them and how she came to join the university.

Weight stigma and discrimination: finally at the top table

On the 15 May 2018, I attended the All Party Parliamentary Group on obesity’s launch of the “The Current Landscape of Obesity Services”. Within the report, the findings of a survey that amongst other topics explored patients’ perceptions and experiences of weight stigma and discrimination were disseminated.

 Dr Stuart Flint

Time to stop weight stigma in UK national newspapers

In this blog post, Dr Stuart Flint, Senior Research Fellow in the Carnegie School Of Sport, reflects on the dangers of weight stigma by UK national newspapers.

 Dr Stuart Flint

The contribution of green spaces to health and wellbeing

In this blog post Jenny Woodward, Research Fellow, Centre for Health Promotion Research and Dr Eric Brymer, Reader in the Carnegie School of Sport, reflect on a recent conference which discussed the contribution of green spaces to health and wellbeing.

Children piggy backing

Protecting parks for public health: why bother?

Matthew Hobbs is a PhD Candidate at Leeds Beckett University studying the built environment and its relationship with obesity. He is also a Lecturer in Physical Activity, Exercise and Health at Leeds Trinity University. In this blog post, he outlines his current research which explores the importance of parks for public health.

 Matthew Hobbs

Partnerships in Health and Well-being: A Focus on Leeds

In this blog post Karl Witty, Team Lead for Community Partnership, reflects on the focus of partnerships in health and well-being in Leeds.

 Karl Witty

How can befriending support people with a learning disability take part in leisure activities?

Dr Kris Southby, a Research Officer in the Centre for Health Promotion Research at Leeds Beckett, is set to work with Mencap on a new project to find out how befriending people with learning disabilities can support them in taking part in leisure activities. In this blog post, which originally appeared on Mencap's blog, he explains more about the research and its importance.

The importance of online support forums for men experiencing infertility

This week is National Fertility Awareness Week, and Sperm Comet Ltd, researchers into male infertility and sperm DNA damage, are running a week of blog posts around the subject of male fertility. In today's post, Dr Esmée Hanna, from the Centre for Men's Health, and Professor Brendan Gough, from the School of Social Sciences at Leeds Beckett, share their research insights.

Professor Brendan Gough
 Dr Esmée Hanna

Maximising patient and public engagement in healthcare

In a recent opinion piece published in the Health Service Journal (HSJ), Judy White and Mark Gamsu presented their thoughts around moving patient and public involvement in healthcare services from the margins to the mainstream.


Frozen shoulder in Antarctica? - From telemedicine to telephysiotherapy

In this blog post Gareth Jones, Senior Lecturer Physiotherapy; Sports & Exercise Medicine in the School of Rehabilitation & Health Sciences at Leeds Beckett, reflects on a recent remote physiotherapy consultation with a Field Guide at Rothera Research Station, Adelaide Island in Antarctica.

Devolution of Health and Social Care in Manchester: Revolution or Evolution?

As Greater Manchester prepares to devolve health and social care powers, Rob Newton, Joint Health and Wellbeing Officer for the Institute of Health and Wellbeing at Leeds Beckett and the Health and Wellbeing Board at Leeds City Council, considers the potential impact on the health and social care sector.

 Rob Newton

New approaches to promote activity vital in stopping 'inactivity epidemic'

In this blog post, PhD Research student Katie Pickering and Professor Jim McKenna reflect on the findings of a recent study which suggests lack of exercise could be killing twice as many people as obesity in Europe.

Enabling partnerships for change

In this blog post Professor Ellis and John Walsh outline some elements of partnerships established between York Street Practice and Leeds Beckett University, and reflect of how partnership working has happened and the dynamics that stimulate its work and life.

 Professor Ieuan Ellis
A Display of books

Books for prisoners: a step in the right direction

Today has seen the high court declare that the ban on prisoners in England and Wales receiving books has been declared unlawful. Dr Esmee Hanna, Research Assistant in the Centre for Men's Health at Leeds Beckett University, has been actively involved in campaigning for books for prisoners.

 Dr Esmée Hanna

Mega-sized sporting events too often fail to deliver health legacy

In this post, Dr Daniel Parnell, Senior lecturer in Sport Business Management assesses how mega-sized sporting events often struggle to deliver a health legacy.

 Dr Dan Parnell

Five ways to wellbeing

As Mental Health Awareness Week gets underway, Leeds Beckett’s Senior Wellbeing Practitioner James Ewens discusses how the week is aimed at promoting positive wellbeing across campus and tackling mental health stigma.

 James Ewans

From protests to England’s early exit, Brazil 2014. Has anyone even mentioned the health legacy of the World Cup?

Following the exit of England in the World Cup 2014 and in the backdrop of the performance related narrative engulfing media attention, Dr Daniel Parnell, Senior Lecturer in Sport Business Management considers whether this mega-event can offer any hope for a health legacy.

 Dr Dan Parnell

Educating Dietetic support workers

In our final Dietitians Week blog post, Certificate in Nutritional Health & Certificate HE in Nutritional Health course leader Linsey King looks at how Dietetic support workers are taught at Leeds Met.


Dietitians in the Media Spotlight

In our latest Dietitians Week blog post, freelance consultant dietitian and Senior Lecturer in nutrition and dietetics, Ursula Philpot takes a look at how the profession is portrayed by the media.

Dietitians Week celebrates students' placement experiences

With the world’s first Dietitians Week underway, June Copeman, Professional Lead for Nutrition and Dietetics, within the School of Health and Wellbeing, reflects on how pre-registration dietetic students are applying their knowledge in practical settings to influence in a positive way the nutrition of the general public.

 June Copeman

Does what gets measured get done

Two weeks ago The Legatum Institute’s Commission on Wellbeing and Policy published its final report.

 Rob Newton
Cancer talk week

Cancer Talk Week - Talking about Penile Cancer

This week marks the start of Macmillan’s Cancer Talk Week, (20 – 26 January), a campaign which aims to break down some of the taboos around cancer and make it easier for those affected by cancer to engage in conversations about the disease.  In today's blog post, Karl Witty shares his experiences of talking to men with penile cancer.

 Karl Witty

Education and training for global health workforce planning

In this blog post, Professor Ieuan Ellis, Dean and Pro Vice Chancellor of the Faculty of Health & Social Sciences, looks at the role that UK universities have to play in providing education and training for the global health workforce.

 Professor Ieuan Ellis

Mens Health Week 2013

Professor Alan White, Professor of Men's Health at Leeds Met, gives us his thoughts on the forthcoming Men's Health Week, which runs from 10 to 16 June and aims to tackle stigma in men’s mental health and promote mental well-being and help-seeking in men.

 Professor Alan White