28 April 2022 - 27 January 2023

Monday - Friday

10am - 4.30pm

Free entry

11 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JQ

The illustrations, books and objects displayed in this exhibition tell the story of the changing role of food in medicine over the last 600 years.

This is not a history of eating, it is a history of the relationship between food and health – through society, folklore, deprivation and dieting. It includes ideas from hundreds of years ago about how food could be used as a preventative, a palliative and a cure.

Additionally, it considers the role of the physician, including Fellows and Members of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, who pioneered the development of new and innovative food-based medical treatments.

This exhibition encourages us to consider both the social and the medical ideas around food and health, and aims to show how our shifting notions of, and relationship with, our diet have been central to medicine for hundreds of years.

There are artworks depicting eating disorders, and other forms of disordered eating, in this exhibition







Preserved specimens

Modern art

Rare printed books




To find out more about the exhibition and to arrange guided tours for groups please email us at library@rcpe.ac.uk

For press releases, images or other press-related information please email us at policy@rcpe.ac.uk