Autopsy Gives Initial Answers in TV Diet Doctor’s Greek Island Death

Brook Mitchell/Getty Images
Brook Mitchell/Getty Images

The British celebrity doctor whose body was found over the weekend after he vanished during a vacation to the Greek island of Symi died from natural causes, police say.

An initial autopsy on the remains of Dr. Michael Mosley—a well-known advocate for the 5:2 diet who went missing last week—found no injuries on his body which could have caused his death, a Greek police spokeswoman told the BBC. The 67-year-old’s remains were found on Sunday, four days after he was reported missing.

British Journalist Recalls Harrowing Moment He Found Diet Doctor’s Body

Konstantia Dimoglido, the police spokeswoman, told the BBC that Mosley’s time of death was around 4 p.m. local time last Wednesday—the day he disappeared. She added that the conclusion that he died from natural causes was informed by the absence of injuries and the position in which his body was found.

The BBC also reported that it had been told about security camera footage appearing to show Mosley’s final moments. In the footage, he can reportedly be seen making his way down a hillside near to where his body was found before disappearing from view behind a wall.

The images recorded close to the Agia Marina beach bar show him carrying an umbrella as he walks down the mountain, according to the Greek newspaper Proto Thema. The outlet reports that Mosley can be seen losing his footing on the rugged hillside and falling on the rocks, appearing not to get up again.

Analysis of his route and the security footage showed he may have been as little as 90 seconds away from safety, according to The Times. The British newspaper said Mosley was found lying on his back on a rock with both of his legs bent and slightly raised, while his left hand was across his chest.

“The way the body was positioned suggests that first he sat down and then he died,” a police source told the Times. “There is no indication that he was hit by something in the head for example, or that he collapsed while walking.”

The newspaper also claimed that Mosley’s elevated legs may indicate he was feeling seriously ill in the extreme heat before his death, as the NHS advises patients feeling faint to lie down and raise their legs slightly higher than their body to increase the flow of blood to the brain.

A huge search operation was launched on Symi last week after Mosley failed to return from a walk beginning on Agios Nikolaos beach in the early afternoon on Wednesday. His body was ultimately discovered by a bar manager after the mayor of the island “saw something” by a fence at the bar and informed staff, according to the PA news agency.

His wife and the mother of his four children, Dr. Clare Bailey Mosley, said in a statement over the weekend that the family was “taking comfort in the fact that he so very nearly made it” to safety.

“He did an incredible climb, took the wrong route and collapsed where he couldn’t be easily seen by the extensive search team,” she said. The statement added that Mosley’s loved ones were “hugely comforted by the outpouring of love from people around the world,” which made it “clear that Michael meant a huge amount to so many of you.”

Mosley’s popular intermittent fasting diet was taken up by thousands of people including Benedict Cumberbatch and Jimmy Kimmel.

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