Diet and Health



Diet and Health

Many of the health problems which today’s society is facing are associated with the ageing population and the increase in the prevalence of chronic medical conditions. IBERS is uniquely placed in the UK with the ability to link plant/animal breeding and chemical phenotyping of food raw materials with studies on the effect of diet and physical activity on health and disease.

Working with both animals and humans major external collaborations have been developed with clinical and veterinary centres of excellence to exploit metabolomics, genomics and bioinformatics technology to address key issues in nutrition research. We also examine the interaction of diet and physical activity in the ageing process and in the management of chronic medical conditions and how lifestyle advice can be realised in a free-living population, with a specific focus on the rural environment. To facilitate research activity the Well-being and Assessment Research Unit (WARU) was established to foster relationships with the local community and provide a facility to meet with members of the public and enable them to contribute to and engage with research activity.



To improve the health and well-being of people through research, education and engagement by:

  • Establishing valid and reliable measure of habitual dietary intake
  • Identifying key dietary and physical activity factors which are associated with health and predict injury and disease
  • Identifying factors which influence dietary change and physical activity uptake and maintenance
  • Establishing optimal physical activity patterns for physiological benefit




  • Physiology Laboratory for Health and Performance - The physiology laboratories house a wide range of equipment for monitoring responses to exercise. This includes high performance treadmills, electromagnetically-braked cycle ergometers, rowing ergometers, spirometers, online gas analysis systems with 12-lead ECG, range of anthropometric facilities include DXA scanner and an environmental chamber.
  • Movement Analysis Laboratory for Health and Performance - Biodex isokinetic dynamometer, Motion Analysis Corporation 3D camera system with 8 cameras, two moveable AMTI force plates, wireless EMG system and an overhead harness system, with integral running track.
  • High Resolution Metabolomics Laboratory - Centres on the identification and quantification of metabolites from a wide range of biological matrices. A long-term core activity has focused on the development of a dietary exposure biomarker strategy utilising human urine
  • Next-generation Sequencing and Genotyping - IBERS has made substantial recent investments in next-generation sequencing (NGS) and genotyping infrastructure, resulting in the formation of a new Translational Genomics facility based at the Gogerddan campus.


Monitoring and assessment of functional ability and frailty status in older adults (FACET)

Focuses on the prevention of frailty by monitoring and improving health of older adults. It aims to increase the awareness of frailty amongst individuals and professionals and promote what people can do to prevent frailty.

Monitoring Well-being and Health @ Home

assesses the use of ‘smart’ digital technology to help individuals monitor and potentially improve their nutrition, body composition and general well-being.


In collaboration with local GP surgeries we examine the ‘Patient Journey’ following diagnosis with prediabetes and the role of a brief educational intervention delivered through primary care.

Future Foods

Is an exciting programme which aims to deliver world-class expertise in food science, technology and nutrition R&D to ambitious Welsh food and drink businesses seeking to develop healthy, market-creating products.

AberInnovation Campus 

Has established a team of skilled researchers and developed a unique set of advanced R&D capabilities to support innovation in the Welsh Food and Drink sector.  

Healthy for my Baby

Preconception lifestyle intervention targeting women with overweight and their partners aiming to reduce pregnancy complications, prevent adult cardiometabolic diseases, and prevent childhood obesity. Diet through self-reported measures and urinary biomarkers as well as lifestyle and anthropometric measures will be evaluated.

Stroke Rehabilitation

Interdisciplinary project leveraging methods from computer science, neuroscience, biology, human biomechanics, clinical exercise therapy and psychology, and collaborative working closely with the NHS, Welsh Government, local communities, and our industry and academic partners to studying how stroke impacts mobility and design interventions that help meaningful recovery.

Short-term and longer-term effects of meat intake on metabolism in Indians

Using existing cohort resources to establish the cardio-metabolic effects of meat-based diets on metabolism in an Indian population to further inform dietary guidelines, and agricultural and environmental policies, in India.

Principal Investigators

Principal Investigators

Picture Name Email Telephone
Dr Manfred Beckmann +44 (0) 1970 622340
Prof John Draper +44 (0) 1970 622789
Dr Rhys Thatcher +44 (0) 1970 628630
Dr Federico Villagra Povina +44 (0) 1970 622108
Dr Joanne Wallace +44 (0) 1970 628681



More publications on the Research Portal »