The Way We Eat Could Doom Us as a Species. Here’s a New Diet Designed to Save Us.
The EAT-Lancet Commission’s “planetary health diet” is bold and controversial.
The way we eat and produce food has become so destructive to the environment and our health that it now threatens the long-term survival of the human species, an international commission of 37 scientists write in a sprawling new Lancet report.
We now have so many interconnected food-related crises — climate change, pollution, and food waste, not to mention malnutrition and obesity — that it will be impossible to feed the 10 billion people expected by 2050 unless we make dramatic changes to our diets and farming practices, the researchers argue.
What’s needed, according to the peer-reviewed report, titled Food in the Anthropocene: The EAT-Lancet Commission on healthy diets from sustainable food systems, is a new philosophy for how to eat on planet Earth. Though there are huge variations around the world in what and how much we consume, we are all in this existential crisis together.
Which brings us to what seems to be the most controversial aspect of this report: its specific dietary advice for ensuring that everyone’s nutritional needs are met without exceeding “planetary boundaries.” To survive as a species, it says, everyone — including you! — is advised to eat mostly vegetables, grains, legumes, and nuts, and limit red meat consumption to just one serving per week.
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