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Issue 1 Podcast Reviews

By Cristianne


Brown Boss: Using Food & Lifestyle To Help Prevent Cancer, With Toral Shah

Brown Boss, a podcast by British Asian Women’s Magazine, shines a light on leading British South Asians including entrepreneurs, community leaders and government officials. In this episode, Nutritional Scientist and Functional Medicine Practitioner Toral Shah sits down with host Lavanya Aneja to discuss her personal experiences of cancer diagnoses and her work in cancer prevention. First diagnosed with breast cancer at 29, Shah has not only survived the disease twice but also supported her mum through the same diagnosis. Subsequently she started The Urban Kitchen, which helps people change their lifestyle and diet in order to prevent disease and increase their chance of survival. Speaking specifically of the South Asian community, Shah believes there is a purpCommenoseful silence around the topic of cancer and speaks of being stigmatised by members of her community after having a mastectomy. The second half of the podcast focuses on Shah’s work with cancer charities and organisations, which she argues do not do enough to engage minority groups in the UK. Shops and events catered to communities of colour are rarely chosen as partners to promote prevention and screening, and the foods pushed as ‘healthy’ and ‘preventative’ are often atypical in an Asian, African or Caribbean diet. Shah is an open and passionate guest and the range of subjects covered in this frank and relaxed conversation means there is something of interest for everyone.

Show Me The Science: White Coats For Black Lives

This episode of Show Me the Science, a podcast produced by Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, was released at the height of COVID-19 and BLM protests in the United States. Focusing on racism as a public health issue, the host Jim Dryden interviews two Black medics at different stages of their careers and discusses the impact of systemic racism, both inside and outside of the health system. While the podcast uses statistics to provide a clear picture of the impact of COVID-19 on Black and brown communities, the most interesting moments come from the more nuanced and personal issues raised by the interviewees. These range from the moral argument of demonstrating in a time of COVID-19, the problematic narrative that suggests Black people are inherently unhealthy and are therefore to blame for the higher death rates, and the ways in which US medics need to reflect on the day-to-day treatment of their patients of colour. The most reflective moment comes as third year medical student, Kamaria Lee, discusses her own identity as both a young Black woman and a medic, working in a system which has historically led to the mistreatment of Black people. Lee cites the Tuskegee syphilis study (a study in which Black men with syphilis were left untreated for decades in order to monitor the natural history of the disease), as a clear example of mistrust of the health-care system and how – even as a Black woman – it can be difficult to build relationships of trust with her Black patients.

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