The European Prospective Investigation of Cancer (EPIC) began as a large multi-centre cohort study primarily looking at the connection between diet, lifestyle factors and cancer, although the study was broadened from the outset to include other conditions. EPIC was designed to be a long-term study, following a large number of people over many years. EPIC-Norfolk is part of a Europe-wide programme, which is described on our international page.
With the help of over 30,000 people living in Norfolk, our aim is to provide data-based evidence for health policies to prevent or delay disease onset and maintain health and independence in older people. To achieve this goal, we are trying to understand the factors that are most often present when people stay healthy and also factors more likely to be present should they develop a particular health condition or disease.
EPIC-Norfolk participants are men and women who were aged between 40 and 79 when they joined the study and who lived in Norwich and the surrounding towns and rural areas. They have been contributing information about their diet, lifestyle and health through questionnaires and health checks over two decades. Further information about the various stages of the study and the focus of each health check is summarised in our timeline.
Details of the rationale behind the study and its specific aims and methods are given in the other sections of this page.