The Healthy Living team contributed to three separate events during the 2013 British Science Festival, which was hosted in Newcastle upon Tyne. Through exhibits based at Grey’s Monument as part of the food festival, a family day at Northumbria University and a formal event for Local Authority representatives from across the North East, the Healthy Living team were able to share knowledge with the public about the benefits of breakfast, particularly for health, wellbeing and cognition.

Visitors were exposed to an array of information and experiences through hands-on activities such as a computer based, healthy eating decision game; they could watch healthy cooking demonstrations, try new foods and were able to talk directly to academics about their research and its application. Visitors were also able to take information away and were provided with details of how to find out more information through the Healthy Living website and social media outputs, ensuring that visitors could access information beyond the event.

On the first of three fun-filled days, the exhibit formed part of the Eat Festival events taking place at Grey’s Monument. Members of the public were offered the opportunity to talk to researchers about the latest research findings on the effects of breakfast on health and wellbeing. The Full of Beans stand gave visitors of all ages the chance to learn about portion size and the nutritional content of popular breakfast foods. Live cooking demonstrations, taster sessions and free cereal and milk also allowed visitors to take away some delicious, healthy breakfast ideas.

The second event was a family day, which took place within Sports Central at Northumbria University. Surrounded by exciting, science-based activities, families came along and learned about the importance of breakfast, the impact of portion size and good nutrition. A new computer game, designed by Healthy Living and Ki Media to teach children about healthy breakfast choices, was a hit with the youngest visitors and visitors of all ages took free samples of cereal and milk, vowing to start the following day with a breakfast meal.

The final event that Healthy Living were involved in was an evening reception, which showcased a finite selection of exhibits from the British Science Festival. The team spoke to representatives from education, policy and practice about the activities they had provided throughout the British Science Festival and the academic work underpinning the activities.