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Eating for Eye Health: Engaging patients with dry age-related macular degeneration in community cookery to support lifestyle change and positive health

Gilbert, R; Rawlings, A; Dixon, M; de Pinho, ARG; Caffrey, T; (2019) Eating for Eye Health: Engaging patients with dry age-related macular degeneration in community cookery to support lifestyle change and positive health. Research for All , 3 (2) pp. 129-141. 10.18546/rfa.03.2.02. Green open access

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Abstract

There are limited treatment options available upon diagnosis of dry age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a leading cause of blindness in older people, which progressively threatens central vision and quality of life. Community engagement has the potential to support ‘positive health’ of individuals with untreatable eye conditions. Eating for Eye Health is an award-winning public-engagement project that aims to raise awareness of research suggesting that nutrition might help protect against progression of AMD and to encourage patients to cook and eat antioxidant-rich food in a community environment. The project engaged patients who had a diagnosis of dry AMD through a focus group and a community cookery day organized in partnership with the healthy food outlet, Pod, and the Manor Gardens Community Kitchen Project, Islington, London. A focus group highlighted participants’ potential barriers to engagement with research about lifestyle modification and identified that a co-designed community cookery project could help to address unmet needs for support. Individuals with dry AMD reported increased levels of confidence in cooking skills after participating in the community cookery day. The combination of these methods within the context of AMD highlights how a focus on patient needs and expectations can establish and grow mutually beneficial relationships. There is potential for Eating for Eye Health, or similar community kitchen approaches, to be implemented within the community setting through NHS ‘social prescribing’ initiatives. In conclusion,Eating for Eye Health is unique in its combination of elements of community consultative and collaborative forms of engagement. These methods could be adopted as part of Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) in local health policy development in the community.

Type: Article
Title: Eating for Eye Health: Engaging patients with dry age-related macular degeneration in community cookery to support lifestyle change and positive health
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.18546/rfa.03.2.02
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.18546/RFA.03.2.02
Language: English
Additional information: ©Copyright 2019 Gilbert, Rawlings, Dixon, Gonçalves de Pinho and Caffrey. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Licence, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Keywords: dry AMD, community kitchens, nutrition, health and well-being, social prescribing, consultation, collaboration
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > STEaPP
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Built Environment Faculty Office
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10081733
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