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The green shoots of convergence.

At last, the long, dark nights and heavy, grey skies are giving way to warmer climes and lighter days. With lambs skipping in fields, buds forming on the naked branches of trees and tender shoots pushing their way through the dormant earth ... spring is definitely in the air, and its tell-tale signs of new life nourish me with a sense of vigour and well-being. If only I could bottle it--whatever 'it' is.

The extra light and heat of the spring sun have beckoned me outside to remove winter's litter and to prepare the ground for new growth. As a garden dabbler, I'm keenly aware that life is food. Yet food is also medicine; I can vouch for the nutritional benefits of, for example, garlic, watercress, tomatoes, currants, spinach and herbs. A few years ago, I made the decision to turn my back on many of the processed foods on offer in supermarkets. Now, I struggle to make it through a day without a bucketful of fruit and vegetables. Should I find myself in a situation that hampers my access to such ingredients, I can feel my body rebel as it tries to do something meaningful with 'food' that has the same nutritional benefit (and taste!) as an old boot.

Working on Pharma puts me in receipt of many press releases ... and I'm seeing an emerging trend--the power of food and its place in our medicine cabinets. Health and food have a long history and are inextricably linked. Food has the power to prevent (or encourage) the occurrence of certain diseases and illnesses; it also has the force to 'cure' or alleviate. And this hasn't escaped the notice of the pharmaceutical and nutraceutical industries. Furthermore, the University of Aberdeen is offering a new Masters degree (Molecular Nutrition) that addresses the links between diet and diseases including cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. How far off is the convergence of the pharma and the nutraceutical industries? Only time will tell. But what I'm really waiting to see is the first bottle of 'Spring'--a tonic that energizes, invigorates and puts a bounce in your step.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

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Publication:Pharma
Article Type:Editorial
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2012
Words:353
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