Rowett researcher wins the best scientific paper of 2019

Research carried out by a former Aberdeen scientist while at the University of Aberdeen Rowett Institute has been awarded the best scientific paper of 2019 by the Alpro Foundation.

Dr Christian Reynolds was awarded the prize for his innovative research in one of the most commonly cited barriers to sustainable healthy eating – affordability. The study was published in Public Health Nutrition in 2019.

The research by Dr Reynolds and his team from the Rowett Institute demonstrated that in the UK, it was feasible for all income groups to shift their current eating habits to more sustainable patterns whilst keeping within their budgetary boundaries. In addition, the work focused on shifting individuals towards a realistic sustainable diet which entailed minimal deviations from their normal eating patterns.

The study adds to the mounting evidence that diets predominantly based on plant foods and with lower intakes of dairy and meat (without eliminating) are critical for both human and planetary health.

The renowned Alpro Foundation Scientific Paper Award honours the work of a young scientific researcher as the first author of an outstanding paper in the field of plant-based nutrition (impact on health or sustainability).

Dr Reynolds, who is now based at City, University of London , said: “It is a huge honour to have received the award from the Alpro Foundation.

“I was amazed when the Alpro Foundation rang me up to give me the news. It has been an amazing opportunity to present this research to a panel of leaders of European nutrition research as well as a present a public webinar.

“The University of Aberdeen Rowett institute was a great place to do this research. When conducting research at the Rowett, you get a sense of contributing to a continuing tradition of world leading health and nutrition research. Indeed this research is part of a tradition of research into healthy affordable diets dating back to sir John Boyd-Orr's work in the 1920s.” 

Dr Reynolds carried out this research under the guidance of Professor Jennie Macdiarmid who is one of the leading researchers in Sustainable Nutrition and Health.

Dr Reynold’s research was funded by the Scottish Government.

The Alpro Foundation is an independent platform for academics, health care professionals and key stakeholders in nutrition to share knowledge and discuss on the relevance of plant-based eating.