Diet and nutrition is an issue which is continuing to dominate the agendas of media, governments, NGOS, food and drink industries around the world. Whilst there are many different complex dietary and nutritional considerations across countries and regions, according to the World Health Organization, people of all age groups, regions and countries are today affected by non-communicable diseases (NCDs). In fact, it estimates the NCDs kill 41 million people each year, equivalent to 71% of all deaths globally (8).

Non-communicable – or chronic – diseases are described as being diseases of long duration and generally slow progression and, according to the World Health Organization, tobacco use, physical inactivity, the harmful use of alcohol and unhealthy diets are factors that increase the risk of dying from an NCD.

In this section, we focus on some of the non-communicable diseases including obesity and diabetes, as well as the prevalence of malnutrition in Tanzania which we look at more closely.

Finally, we address the importance of dental health in preventing oral diseases, the most common non-communicable diseases which affect people throughout their lifetime (9).