ArticleLiterature Review

Food in the Anthropocene: the EAT–Lancet Commission on healthy diets from sustainable food systems

Authors:
To read the full-text of this research, you can request a copy directly from the authors.

No full-text available

Request Full-text Paper PDF

To read the full-text of this research,
you can request a copy directly from the authors.

... There is an urgent need to improve global diets and food systems in order to safeguard human and planetary health [1,2]. In 2017, poor nutrition was associated with 11 million deaths and the loss of 255 million disabilityadjusted life years, making it the leading modifiable risk factor for morbidity and mortality globally [1]. ...
... Unhealthy diets are a key driver of the global non-communicable disease (NCD) epidemic [1,3]. In association with an increasing prevalence of high energy density and poor quality diets, 2.1 billion adults world-wide are experiencing overweight or obesity [2,4]. Furthermore, 821 million people remain undernourished, and two billion have micronutrient deficiencies due to low diet quality [5]. ...
... Furthermore, 821 million people remain undernourished, and two billion have micronutrient deficiencies due to low diet quality [5]. Addressing risk factors such as diets high in sodium, low in wholegrains, and low in fruits can significantly improve the health of individuals [1][2][3]. Nutrition must be a central component of national NCD preventative Open Access *Correspondence: jacqueline.bredhauer@amsa.org.au Bredhauer et al. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background Inadequate nutrition education in medical training is a prevailing global challenge. This study assessed Australian medical students’ self-perceived competencies in nutrition and preferences regarding nutrition education in medical training. Methods We conducted a national cross-sectional online survey between September 2019 and January 2020. Our survey collected sociodemographic characteristics and assessed nutrition competency according to a validated assessment tool. All Australian medical students aged over 18 were eligible to participate. Results One hundred ninety-five medical students representing 20 Australian medical schools completed the survey and reported moderate nutrition knowledge (17·6 ± 4.1 out of 35, 50%) and skills (29.8 ± 7.6 out of 55, 54%). Students demonstrated positive attitudes towards nutrition training/education (35·9 ± 4.0 out of 40, 90%). Most medical students (n = 148, 72%) reported they had sought some form of nutrition education outside of their degree. Students showed preference for practical, evidence-based nutrition education that is integrated in and prioritised throughout medical training. Conclusions Australian medical students express positive attitudes towards nutrition but report only low to moderate nutrition knowledge and skills. There is an opportunity to incorporate practical, regular nutrition learning activities into Australian medical curriculums to equip future doctors to adequately address non-communicable disease. Such initiatives are likely to be well received by students.
... The global food system is a major driver of critical environmental challenges, including climate change, deforestation, and depletion and degradation of freshwater resources [1][2][3]. Multiple strategies at all stages of the food system are needed to transition the food system to one that operates within sustainable global limits of resource use and creation of waste products [1,4,5]. To address a lack of large-scale, coordinated efforts to resolve urgent food system issues, experts have called for approaches that include systematic monitoring and benchmarking, as well as processes that translate evidence and knowledge to policies without undue influence from well-funded corporate stakeholders [6,7]. ...
... There are also myriad health benefits associated with eating more plant-based foods, like vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and whole grains, especially in place of red and processed meat [2,28]. Specific conditions that can be prevented or improved with a healthy diet include heart disease, stroke, type-2 diabetes, and some cancers [2,28]. In many countries, Consumption of animal-based foods varies widely between countries, and is strongly associated with income levels. ...
... Average protein requirements are 47-57 g/day, depending on body size and other factors [27]; estimated protein consumption in high-income countries is 102.9 g/day/person with 58.8 g/day/person coming from animal products [26]. There are also myriad health benefits associated with eating more plant-based foods, like vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, and whole grains, especially in place of red and processed meat [2,28]. Specific conditions that can be prevented or improved with a healthy diet include heart disease, stroke, type-2 diabetes, and some cancers [2,28]. ...
Article
Full-text available
To improve food system sustainability, it is critical to reduce food loss and waste (FLW) and shift away from high-meat diets. We conducted a qualitative content analysis of 238 newspaper articles (2018–2020) to compare media framing and stakeholder involvement. For both issues, newspaper coverage often called for individual-level behavior change. Coverage of how consumers can reduce FLW was more detailed compared to diet change and portrayed numerous organizations and government agencies working in partnerships to reduce FLW. Coverage of diet change efforts portrayed substantial disagreement, including legislative efforts to restrict labeling of alternative meat and dairy products. Journalists covering new evidence on the need to shift diets for sustainability often quoted both the lead researcher and an opponent with ties to the livestock industry. Inclusion of “both sides” was similar to previous media coverage that presented climate change as an open debate for years. Strong scientific evidence shows the need to address both FLW and diet shifts to improve interconnected environmental and human health outcomes, and our analysis of media coverage shows important differences regarding how these two issues are covered in the media and approached by stakeholders in the U.S. These results can inform communication with consumers, journalists, and policymakers to more effectively translate evidence into solutions, especially at the organizational and policy levels.
... Over the past decades, it has become increasingly clear that the consumption of animal products has had unsustainable effects on the environment through high demand on land, water, feed, housing and the production of greenhouse gases [1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10]. In addition, excess consumption of animal products is known to have harmful effects on human health, including cancer, cardiovascular disease and obesity [11][12][13][14][15]. In response to these known detrimental effects of animal protein consumption on the environment and human health, global food policy has shifted to place greater emphasis on more sustainable farming practices and protein sources [1,16,17]. ...
... The average WTC ratings for all PB food categories were low and between '1-3 times per week' and 'every 2-3 month' (Figure 1A), which corresponded with low citation frequencies of positive emotional associations (<25% on average) (Part S6 of Supplementary Materials). These findings were consistent with the observed low uptake of PB food categories in general [109] but are concern for the needed transition to more sustainable food systems and consumption patterns [14]. As previously noted by, for example, [51,136], findings ways to help consumers to incorporate PB food categories into their diet is paramount. ...
Article
Full-text available
A survey of willingness to consume (WTC) 5 types of plant-based (PB) food was conducted in USA, Australia, Singapore and India (n = 2494). In addition to WTC, emotional, conceptual and situational use characterizations were obtained. Results showed a number of distinct clusters of consumers with different patterns of WTC for PB foods within different food categories. A large group of consumers did not discriminate among PB foods across the various food categories. Six smaller, but distinct clusters of consumers had specific patterns of WTC across the examined food categories. In general, PB Milk and, to a much lesser extent, PB Cheese had highest WTC ratings. PB Fish had the lowest WTC, and two PB meat products had intermediate WTC. Emotional, conceptual and situational use characterizations exerted significant lifts/penalties on WTC. No penalty or lifts were imparted on WTC by the situational use of ‘moving my diet in a sustainable direction’, whereas uses related to ‘when I want something I like’ and ‘when I want something healthy’ generally imparted WTC lifts across clusters and food categories. The importance of this research for the study of PB foods is its demonstration that consumers are not monolithic in their willingness to consume these foods and that WTC is often a function of the food category of the PB food.
... Des études plus précises sur les impacts des changements climatiques sur la pratique sportive en Occitanie seraient nécessaires pour mieux comprendre et identifier plus précisément les effets des modifications du climat sur la pratique, les équipements et sites sportifs (clubs de voile et autres sites littoraux, stations de ski, sallesLes changements climatiques contribuent déjà à l'augmentation des maladies et des morts prématurées. Deux études récentes de haut niveau(Willett et al. 2019, Swinburn et al. 2019) ont mis en évidence les effets négatifs des régimes alimentaires actuels sur la santé humaine et planétaire. L'obésité et le changement climatique formeraient une syndémie globale qui entrelace les facteurs de santé, biologiques et environnementaux aggravant, par leur synergie, les problèmes de santé(Swinburn et al. 2019). ...
... En Occitanie, l'obésité qui expose à de lourdes conséquences sur la santé touche 15,5 % de la population en 2020 (Ligue contre l'obésité, 2021).Les systèmes alimentaires sont non seulement responsables des maladies mais génèrent aussi 25 % à 30 % des émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Le rapport EAT-Lancet(Willett et al. 2019) préconise un « régime de santé planétaire » par une végétalisation de l'assiette composée pour 75 % de fruits, légumes, céréales et légumineuses. Dans notre étude Montpelliéraine, intitulée Medina (financée par l'Agence Nationale de la Recherche) en collaboration avec Solagro, l'assiette optimisée pour atteindre les recommandations nutritionnelles dans le Sud de la France serait composée de moins de viande (surtout de viande rouge), d'oeuf, de lait et de pomme de terre et plus de poissons, de céréales, et de fruits et de légumes, ce qui permettrait de diminuer globalement les émissions de gaz à effet de serre de 35 %. ...
... The incidence of diet-related obesity and chronic diseases, including T2D, coronary heart disease, stroke, metabolic syndrome, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, has been steadily increasing and is a global health concern [30]. Classic socioeconomic transition toward an affluent society inevitably induces a dietary transition (westernization) [31,32]. ...
... Current global consumption consists of an excess of unhealthy foods, such as red meat, sugar, and refined grains, and a shortage of healthy foods, such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, and nuts [30]. This means that the current omnivorous (westernized) diet is problematic and should be corrected. ...
Article
Full-text available
No case has been reported in which ulcerative colitis occurred in a patient with type 2 diabetes mellitus and the patient was treated with a plant-based diet. A 56-year-old man with a 3-year history of diabetes noticed bloody stool about 2 months after his worst glycated hemoglobin A1c test. Endoscopy revealed diffuse inflammation in the rectum. He was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis (proctitis, mild severity). He underwent educational hospitalization. A plant-based diet (1400 kcal/day) was provided. The same dosage of metformin was continued, but no medication was prescribed for ulcerative colitis. At the end of hospitalization, fecal occult blood 271 ng/mL became negative. Glycated hemoglobin A1c 6.9% had decreased to 6.6%. Two months after discharge, glycated hemoglobin A1c decreased to normal for the first time in 3.5 years. Ulcerative colitis had been in remission without medication for one and a half years after the educational hospitalization. Thereafter, however, he experienced two flareups. Deterioration in glycated hemoglobin A1c preceded the flareups. We described a scarcely reported case in which ulcerative colitis occurred in a patient with diabetes and the patient was treated with a plant-based diet. The plant-based diet was effective for both diseases. It seemed that the status of diabetes influenced the onset and relapse of ulcerative colitis.
... Nutrition availability. Food systems influence human health by food availability, prices, consumer preference and food culture [64] . However, providing a population with a healthy diet has become an immediate challenge and a barrier to achieve sustainable agriculture development. ...
... Low-quality diets can cause micronutrient deficiencies and contribute to dietrelated obesity and non-communicable diseases [65] . Worldwide, over 2 billion people suffer from micronutrient deficiencies, and nearly 860 million people suffer from hunger [64] . To quantify nutrition availability, multiple indicators can be used, such as prevalence of malnutrition, chronic disease and foodborne illness [66] . ...
Article
Full-text available
Smallholder farming systems are important for global food security, but these faces multiple environmental challenges hindering sustainable development. Although sustainable smallholder agriculture issues have been widely discussed and addressed by scientists globally, harmonized approaches in evaluating sustainability are still lacking. This paper proposes a five-step process for constructing a sustainability assessment method for smallholder farming systems, namely definition of system boundary & functional unit, indicator selection, indicator weighting, indicator conversion, and indicator aggregation. The paper summarizes the state-of-art progresses in agricultural sustainability assessment at different stages, and systematically discussed the benefits and limitations of weighting and aggregation methods. Overall, this evaluation process should be useful by providing rational and comprehensive results for quantifying the sustainability of smallholder farming systems, and will contribute to practice by providing decision-makers with directions for improving sustainable strategies.
... Des études plus précises sur les impacts des changements climatiques sur la pratique sportive en Occitanie seraient nécessaires pour mieux comprendre et identifier plus précisément les effets des modifications du climat sur la pratique, les équipements et sites sportifs (clubs de voile et autres sites littoraux, stations de ski, sallesLes changements climatiques contribuent déjà à l'augmentation des maladies et des morts prématurées. Deux études récentes de haut niveau(Willett et al. 2019, Swinburn et al. 2019) ont mis en évidence les effets négatifs des régimes alimentaires actuels sur la santé humaine et planétaire. L'obésité et le changement climatique formeraient une syndémie globale qui entrelace les facteurs de santé, biologiques et environnementaux aggravant, par leur synergie, les problèmes de santé(Swinburn et al. 2019). ...
... En Occitanie, l'obésité qui expose à de lourdes conséquences sur la santé touche 15,5 % de la population en 2020 (Ligue contre l'obésité, 2021).Les systèmes alimentaires sont non seulement responsables des maladies mais génèrent aussi 25 % à 30 % des émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Le rapport EAT-Lancet(Willett et al. 2019) préconise un « régime de santé planétaire » par une végétalisation de l'assiette composée pour 75 % de fruits, légumes, céréales et légumineuses. Dans notre étude Montpelliéraine, intitulée Medina (financée par l'Agence Nationale de la Recherche) en collaboration avec Solagro, l'assiette optimisée pour atteindre les recommandations nutritionnelles dans le Sud de la France serait composée de moins de viande (surtout de viande rouge), d'oeuf, de lait et de pomme de terre et plus de poissons, de céréales, et de fruits et de légumes, ce qui permettrait de diminuer globalement les émissions de gaz à effet de serre de 35 %. ...
... Des études plus précises sur les impacts des changements climatiques sur la pratique sportive en Occitanie seraient nécessaires pour mieux comprendre et identifier plus précisément les effets des modifications du climat sur la pratique, les équipements et sites sportifs (clubs de voile et autres sites littoraux, stations de ski, sallesLes changements climatiques contribuent déjà à l'augmentation des maladies et des morts prématurées. Deux études récentes de haut niveau(Willett et al. 2019, Swinburn et al. 2019) ont mis en évidence les effets négatifs des régimes alimentaires actuels sur la santé humaine et planétaire. L'obésité et le changement climatique formeraient une syndémie globale qui entrelace les facteurs de santé, biologiques et environnementaux aggravant, par leur synergie, les problèmes de santé(Swinburn et al. 2019). ...
... En Occitanie, l'obésité qui expose à de lourdes conséquences sur la santé touche 15,5 % de la population en 2020 (Ligue contre l'obésité, 2021).Les systèmes alimentaires sont non seulement responsables des maladies mais génèrent aussi 25 % à 30 % des émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Le rapport EAT-Lancet(Willett et al. 2019) préconise un « régime de santé planétaire » par une végétalisation de l'assiette composée pour 75 % de fruits, légumes, céréales et légumineuses. Dans notre étude Montpelliéraine, intitulée Medina (financée par l'Agence Nationale de la Recherche) en collaboration avec Solagro, l'assiette optimisée pour atteindre les recommandations nutritionnelles dans le Sud de la France serait composée de moins de viande (surtout de viande rouge), d'oeuf, de lait et de pomme de terre et plus de poissons, de céréales, et de fruits et de légumes, ce qui permettrait de diminuer globalement les émissions de gaz à effet de serre de 35 %. ...
... Des études plus précises sur les impacts des changements climatiques sur la pratique sportive en Occitanie seraient nécessaires pour mieux comprendre et identifier plus précisément les effets des modifications du climat sur la pratique, les équipements et sites sportifs (clubs de voile et autres sites littoraux, stations de ski, sallesLes changements climatiques contribuent déjà à l'augmentation des maladies et des morts prématurées. Deux études récentes de haut niveau(Willett et al. 2019, Swinburn et al. 2019) ont mis en évidence les effets négatifs des régimes alimentaires actuels sur la santé humaine et planétaire. L'obésité et le changement climatique formeraient une syndémie globale qui entrelace les facteurs de santé, biologiques et environnementaux aggravant, par leur synergie, les problèmes de santé(Swinburn et al. 2019). ...
... En Occitanie, l'obésité qui expose à de lourdes conséquences sur la santé touche 15,5 % de la population en 2020 (Ligue contre l'obésité, 2021).Les systèmes alimentaires sont non seulement responsables des maladies mais génèrent aussi 25 % à 30 % des émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Le rapport EAT-Lancet(Willett et al. 2019) préconise un « régime de santé planétaire » par une végétalisation de l'assiette composée pour 75 % de fruits, légumes, céréales et légumineuses. Dans notre étude Montpelliéraine, intitulée Medina (financée par l'Agence Nationale de la Recherche) en collaboration avec Solagro, l'assiette optimisée pour atteindre les recommandations nutritionnelles dans le Sud de la France serait composée de moins de viande (surtout de viande rouge), d'oeuf, de lait et de pomme de terre et plus de poissons, de céréales, et de fruits et de légumes, ce qui permettrait de diminuer globalement les émissions de gaz à effet de serre de 35 %. ...
... Des études plus précises sur les impacts des changements climatiques sur la pratique sportive en Occitanie seraient nécessaires pour mieux comprendre et identifier plus précisément les effets des modifications du climat sur la pratique, les équipements et sites sportifs (clubs de voile et autres sites littoraux, stations de ski, sallesLes changements climatiques contribuent déjà à l'augmentation des maladies et des morts prématurées. Deux études récentes de haut niveau(Willett et al. 2019, Swinburn et al. 2019) ont mis en évidence les effets négatifs des régimes alimentaires actuels sur la santé humaine et planétaire. L'obésité et le changement climatique formeraient une syndémie globale qui entrelace les facteurs de santé, biologiques et environnementaux aggravant, par leur synergie, les problèmes de santé(Swinburn et al. 2019). ...
... En Occitanie, l'obésité qui expose à de lourdes conséquences sur la santé touche 15,5 % de la population en 2020 (Ligue contre l'obésité, 2021).Les systèmes alimentaires sont non seulement responsables des maladies mais génèrent aussi 25 % à 30 % des émissions de gaz à effet de serre. Le rapport EAT-Lancet(Willett et al. 2019) préconise un « régime de santé planétaire » par une végétalisation de l'assiette composée pour 75 % de fruits, légumes, céréales et légumineuses. Dans notre étude Montpelliéraine, intitulée Medina (financée par l'Agence Nationale de la Recherche) en collaboration avec Solagro, l'assiette optimisée pour atteindre les recommandations nutritionnelles dans le Sud de la France serait composée de moins de viande (surtout de viande rouge), d'oeuf, de lait et de pomme de terre et plus de poissons, de céréales, et de fruits et de légumes, ce qui permettrait de diminuer globalement les émissions de gaz à effet de serre de 35 %. ...
... WHO [2019] considers a protein intake of 3.4 kgN-protein per capita per year, as the vital minimum requirement. Values twice as high are observed in western countries, and have been associated to important health problems [Willet et al., 2019]. Importantly, the share of animal-based protein consumption varies between less than 10% in some African countries to as much as 70% in rich western countries in Europe and the USA. ...
... Importantly, the share of animal-based protein consumption varies between less than 10% in some African countries to as much as 70% in rich western countries in Europe and the USA. The EAT-Lancet Commission recently recommended a Reference Healthy Diet which, compared to the current European diet, implies a strong reduction not only of total protein intake but also of the share of animal products Willet et al. [2019] The assumption of the agro-ecological scenario presented here is very close to the EAT-Lancet one ( Table 1). ...
... Largely neglected crops also offer a rich gene pool for future crop improvement (Mabhaudhi et al., 2019). Mainstreaming them is an important long-term component of a food system transformation strategy focused on sustainability, climate adaptation, nutrition security, equity, and inclusivity (Willett et al., 2019). ...
Article
Grains have historically represented a major component of human diets and were predominantly consumed in whole form until the first half of the 19th century, when a combination of technological innovations and market dynamics made refined grains, hitherto a premium product, affordable and available to the masses. Grains still account for more than half of the total caloric intake among vulnerable populations worldwide, and their dominant consumption in refined form turns a nutrient-dense, protective food into a nutrient-poor one contributing to growing rates of obesity and noncommunicable disease. Shifting a substantial portion of global grain consumption to whole grains is potentially one of the most significant and achievable improvements to diets and food systems worldwide. In countries with significant micronutrient deficiencies, a switch from refined to fortified whole grain foods can enable institutional channels such as school feeding programs to measurably improve diet quality in a budget-neutral way.
... However, further measures need to be planned to ensure food security and reduce emissions, even as the population grows. These are changes in food structure (Willett et al., 2019), organic and conservation agriculture (Król-Badziak et al., 2021), aquaponics (Li et al., 2018), the movement of livestock from intensive farming to grazing (Hayek and Garrett, 2018) etc. Food waste should be managed appropriately (Woon, 2021). ...
Article
Full-text available
The aim of this study is to identify possible alternative scenarios in food production and consumption that would lead to a more balanced supply of locally produced food and a reduction in the environmental impact of agricultural production. The analysis of food consumption and agricultural land distribution in Slovenia showed that a significantly larger proportion of land area is used for food production for animals than for humans. Several potential changes in the distribution of agricultural land, in milk consumption and production, in the use of fertilizers and in people's eating habits towards lower consumption of red meat were identified. Analysis of the scenarios showed the potential to increase food self-sufficiency by 15 %, reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 35 %, and reduce nitrogen intake by 30 % by 2050. Reducing red meat consumption could shift intensive feed-based livestock production to grass-based production and produce more plant-based food for humans. This could increase the amount of local food and make food production less harmful to the environment. Preliminary research has shown that there are several influencing factors in the food supply chain that have conflicting effects on key food supply parameters and environmental indicators. It is therefore necessary to move towards a systematic multi-criteria optimization of the food supply chain in order to achieve the objectives of the European and national strategies on agriculture and climate change.
... The most vulnerable groups affected by this are mainly women and children as well as impoverished people living in marginal communities. In contrast, the consumption of poor-quality diets results in micronutrient deficiencies, and consequently increases diet-related non-communicable diseases and obesity (Willett et al., 2019). Concerns regarding environmental degradation, loss of biodiversity and climate change have prompted a call to rethink the current configuration of the food system (Drimie and Pereira, 2016). ...
Article
Full-text available
Spider plant (Cleome gynandra) is predominantly used as a traditional leafy vegetable throughout Africa and is considered a rich natural source of essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and proteins. With the increase in malnutrition, diet related non-communicable diseases and poverty across the continent of Africa, the spider plant is a bona fide alternative healthy food crop to alleviate these challenges. Spider plant is an erect annual herb that could grow up to 150 cm tall, strongly branched, with a long taproot and few secondary roots. It is commonly consumed in resource-poor communities especially during times of major food scarcity. It is a drought-tolerant and resilient annual vegetable crop capable of growing well in a wide range of climatic and edaphic conditions. Despite the potential benefits and wide adaptability, progressive attempts towards the development of C. gynandra as a crop have been impeded by issues like low investment in research and development resulting in poor seed quality, relatively low yields and susceptibility to pests and diseases. In this paper, we reviewed the research that has been done regarding its morphology, growing conditions, production and utilisation (i.e., nutrition). The current review highlighted the status of the science in advancing the domestication of C. gynandra as a potential power crop for several African countries. The review concluded that with the advancement of modern biotechnology techniques and genome sequencing, there is a compelling case for investment and development in C. gynandra as a candidate for managing micronutrient deficiencies during the post-pandemic era. Finally, the existing knowledge gaps (e.g., breeding) that necessitate explorations were identified and recommendations that could enhance its development and potential commercialisation were made.
... These data should not go unnoticed. Although the latest dietary recommendations suggest that diets should be based on vegetables and whole grains [4], between one and three portions a week of fish are recommended according to the latest dietary guidelines for the Spanish population [5,6]. Besides being good protein sources, oily fish contain high amounts of the cardioprotective long-chain n-3 eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic fatty acids and are considered the main dietary source of vitamin D in the Spanish population. ...
The Mediterranean diet is a healthy dietary pattern in which fish consumption is an important key element. In Spain, fish intake is the second highest in Europe. Dietary guidelines recommend an intake of 1-3 portions a week of fish. However, Spanish fish sales have been decreasing since 2008. The unexpected pandemic spread of the SARS-CoV-2 in 2020 led the Spanish Government to take restrictive measures that had an impact on people's behavior, including food purchases and consumption. The aim of the study was to analyze purchase data of fish, seafood, and fish products during the lockdown in Spain, using data from loyalty card holders (>5,000,000 participants) from a hypermarket chain in Spain. The results show a 45% increase in the purchase of all types of fish, seafood, and fish products, with the highest increment observed in the retiree (+65 years) as compared to the younger populations. Moreover, the retiree, in spite of the digital divide, were also the ones that most increased online shopping. These data should be considered since events like COVID-19 confinement can have a permanent impact on people's dietary habits, a possibility that should be monitored in the future.
... Their age ranged from (50 to 55) years, their body mass index (BMI) ranged from (30)(31)(32)(33)(34)(35) Kg/ m 2 . They all had hyperlipidemia (Cholesterol above 240 μg/dl, Triglycerides above 150 μg/dl, HDL below 30 μg/dl, LDL above 150μg/dl). ...
... The definition postulates the aim of a food system that is economically viable; that provides broad-based benefits for all members of society; and that does not deplete the natural environment. However, food systems livelihoods continue to remain precarious for many of the world's food providers, and food production is the single largest cause of, and is profoundly impacted by, global environmental change (Willett et al., 2019;HLPE, 2020a). Youth are particularly vulnerable to these challenges. ...
Article
Full-text available
Young people are on the front lines of transforming agriculture and food systems, coping with the social and economic impacts of COVID-19 as well as environmental and climate change effects which are likely to accelerate and intensify during their lifetimes. At the same time, young people across global contexts are increasingly emerging as visible agents of change in food systems, especially through networks that create, transform, and distribute food systems knowledge. This policy and practice review examines the role of youth as actors through food systems knowledge networks. Increasing youth participation in creating sustainable food systems for the future requires policies and practices that support food systems-related knowledge in two ways: (1) democratizing formal education systems; and (2) strengthening horizontal networks of grassroots research and innovation, including through traditional, ecological, local and community knowledge (TELCK). Food systems policies should be developed through dialogue with diverse knowledge systems, experiences, place-based needs, and aspirations of young people to maximize their participation in food systems policy development and evaluation.
... Food production and consumption are major drivers of climate change [2,3]. The EAT Lancet Commission concluded that there is a strong need to reduce the consumption of animal-based foods and increase the consumption of plant-based foods globally for both environmental and health reasons [4]. ...
Article
Full-text available
This study investigated whether Finnish working-aged omnivores (n = 163) could be nudged into replacing red meat with a fava-bean-based protein source via “Dish of the Day” (DoD) and main dish sequence alteration (SA) strategies in a controlled real-world Finnish self-service buffet restaurant with smart scales (Flavoria® Multidisciplinary Research Platform). A further aim was to study whether the effectiveness of the strategies differed by gender, age, and body mass index. The participants were assigned one of four experimental treatments: standard menu (T1), DoD (T2), standard menu + SA (T3), or DoD + SA (T4). The participants could choose any amount or combination of salad components and casseroles with minced meat or fava bean protein. Being subjected to a DoD menu and/or SA had no effect on main dish choice or the share of the meat-based dish in the meal weight. Men were more likely to choose a meat-based main dish and had a higher share of the meat dish in the meal weight compared to women, but no differences were observed between those aged 18–29, 30–44, or 45–65 years or those who were normal weight, overweight, or obese. Future studies should have a larger sample size and investigate food choice motives such as price or environmental awareness.
... The per capita annual meat consumption in China has rapidly increased in recent decades, and this trend is replicated across other East Asian countries, with regional per capita meat consumption expected to double over the next 20 years, according to the Global Food Policy Report [1]. The demand for animal proteins worldwide is expected to continue to rise in the upcoming decades due to the increasing global population [2,3]. To meet the mounting demand, intensive animal farming in livestock houses, where the indoor environment is controlled, is now widely applied in many countries. ...
Article
Full-text available
Citation: Du, L.; Yang, L.; Yang, C.; Hu, C.; Yu, C.; Qiu, M.; Liu, S.; Zhu, S.; Ye, X. Development and
... Some studies, especially those supporting the US Dietary Guidelines for Americans, demonstrated that daily consumption of red and processed meat might increase the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) (19). A proposal in emphasized a transformation trend to a daily diet that consisted mainly of plant-derived foods (20). Similarly, a study from Boston conducted a follow-up with 1,023,872 people, comparing the effect of red meat with other dietary components, such as legumes and grain. ...
Article
Full-text available
Aim The study (PROSPERO: CRD42021240905) aims to reveal the relationships among red meat, serum lipids and inflammatory biomarkers. Methods and results PubMed, EMBASE and the Cochrane databases were explored through December 2021 to identify 574 studies about red meat and serum lipids markers including total cholesterol (TC), triglyceride (TG), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C), high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), C-reactive protein (CRP) or hypersensitive-CRP (hs-CRP). Finally, 20 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) involving 1001 people were included, red meat and serum lipid markers and their relevant information was extracted. The pooled standard mean difference (SMD) was obtained by applying a random-effects model, and subgroup analyses and meta-regression were employed to explain the heterogeneity. Compared with white meat or grain diets, the gross results showed that the consumption of red meat increased serum lipid concentrations like TG (0.29 mmol/L, 95% CI 0.14, 0.44, P <0.001), but did not significantly influence the TC (0.13 mmol/L, 95% CI −0.07, 0.33, P = 0.21), LDL-C (0.11 mmol/L, 95% CI −0.23, 0.45, P = 0.53), HDL-C (−0.07 mmol/L, 95% CI −0.31, 0.17, P = 0.57),CRP or hs-CRP (0.13 mmol/L, 95% CI −0.10, 0.37, P = 0.273). Conclusion Our study provided evidence to the fact that red meat consumption affected serum lipids levels like TG, but almost had no effect on TC, LDL-C, HDL-C and CRP or hs-CRP. Such diets with red meat should be taken seriously to avoid the problem of high lipid profiles. Systematic review registration [ https://www.crd.york.ac.uk/PROSPERO ], identifier [CRD42021240905].
... Thus, a healthy and ecologically sustainable diet must be affordable for individuals of different socio-economic status [3], which is especially important for families with children. To promote both health and environmental sustainability, plant-based diets are recommended, including omnivore, vegetarian or vegan food patterns [4]. However, little is known about the food costs of plant-based diets compared to an omnivore diet, reflecting the economic sustainability. ...
Article
Full-text available
The aim was to analyse the total food costs and the impact of food groups on total food costs among vegetarian, vegan and omnivore children and adolescents in Germany. Based on three-day weighed dietary records of 6–18-year-old children and adolescents of the VeChi Youth Study, the total daily food costs and food group costs (both EUR/day, EUR/1000 kcal) of a vegetarian (n = 145 records), vegan (n = 110) and omnivore (n = 135) diet were calculated. Minimum retail prices of 1000 empirically selected foods reported in the dietary records were linked to individual food intakes. The group differences were analysed using ANCOVA or Kruskal–Wallis tests. Vegans had the highest energy adjusted total food costs at 2.98 EUR/1000 kcal, vegetarians the lowest at 2.52 EUR/1000 kcal. Omnivores also had significantly higher costs than vegetarians with 2.83 EUR/1000 kcal/1000 kcal (p = 0.01), but the total costs did not differ significantly between omnivores and vegans (EUR/d and EUR/1000 kcal). Compared to vegetarians, vegans had significantly higher expenditures (EUR/day) on fruit (p = 0.0003), vegetables (p = 0.006), dairy alternatives (p = 0.0003) and legumes/nuts/seeds (p = 0.0003). Expenditure on starchy foods was significantly higher in the vegetarian or vegan than in the omnivore diet (p = 0.0003). Omnivores spent a quarter of their total food costs on animal source foods (25%), which is equivalent to the sum of food costs for legumes/nuts/seeds, dairy alternatives and meat alternatives in vegans and additionally dairy in vegetarians. The VeChi Youth Study indicated that financial constraints are not necessarily a barrier to switching to a more plant-based diet.
... Regarding the environmental impact of diet, the most used indices at the international level have been the carbon footprint or the estimation of greenhouse gas emissions (GHGE) of diets (13) , fossil energy use (28) , and land and water use (29)(30)(31) . In Mexico's context, 24-hour recalls (5,15,16) , FFQ's (15,16,32,33) , and diet quality indexes (19,34,35) have been developed and validated for dietary assessment and to evaluate the environmental impact of diet (5) . ...
Preprint
Full-text available
Nutritional tools for dietary assessment are crucial elements for nutritional and diet-related study methodologies. Environmental indexes such as water footprint (WF) are essential for assessing diets' environmental impact. Currently, no available software in Mexico and the world simultaneously allows the evaluation of diet and its environmental impact. This study aimed to design and develop a Mexican online nutritional ecologic software for dietary assessment, automatic diet quality calculation, and diet's environmental impact. The software was developed using the waterfall life cycle methodology. A multi-stage process was followed. The program includes diet evaluation through a 24-hour recall and a validated and adapted Food Consumption Frequency Questionnaire (FFQ). The software also integrates automatic calculation of diet quality through an adaptation of The Mexican Diet Quality Index (ICDMx): the Alternate Mexican Diet Quality Index (IACDMx). An automatic WF assessment for Mexico's context was also included. The assessment accounts for multi and single-ingredient foods WF, cooking, food-washing water, and applying correction factors. We created Nutriecology®, a novel technology for assessing diet aspects and WF simultaneously, making data collection and analysis time e cient in transversal and longitudinal studies. Further environmental impact indices, clinic history, and socioeconomic elements will be added to the software in future actualizations.
... We use the IPC 'current' classes, which are based on explicit on-the-ground monitoring (not to be confused with the 'forecast' classes that also use similar types of data to our analysis). Our interest in this study is on the more severe forms of food insecurity driven by acute undernutrition-but addressing food insecurity effectively requires a longer-term strategy to improve the quality of diets to eliminate micronutrient deficiencies and hidden hunger 28 . For our analysis we do not focus solely on transitions to crisis conditions (IPC 3 or higher); instead, we use the established and defined food security transition as a prolonged period, that is, longer than six months (ref. ...
Article
Full-text available
Food insecurity early warning can provide time to mitigate unfolding crises; however, drought remains a large source of uncertainty. The challenge is to filter unclear or conflicting signals from various climatic and socio-economic variables and link them to food security outcomes. Integrating lag-1 autocorrelation diagnostics into remotely sensed observations from the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) mission and food prices, we found dramatic improvement in anticipating the timing and intensity of food crises, except in conflict settings. We analysed drought-induced food crises globally in the SMAP record (since 2015; approximately five per year). The change in soil moisture autocorrelation, which we term the Soil Moisture Auto-Regressive Threshold (SMART), signalled an accurate food security transition for all cases studied here (P < 0.05; n = 212), including lead time of up to three to six months for every case. The SMART trigger anticipates the timing of the transition and the magnitude of the food security change among small to large transitions, both into and out of crises (R2 = 0.80–0.83). While we do not evaluate out-of-sample forecast accuracy using our model, our findings suggest a significant advancement in the capabilities of food security early-warning diagnostics and could save lives and resources. Early warnings of impending food crises can provide valuable time to mitigate their worst impacts, but droughts have proven difficult to predict. Soil moisture autocorrelation measured by remote sensing satellites advances our ability to anticipate food security crises resulting from drought.
... Science plays a key role in the planning of policy reform through providing evidence of impact of food systems, including the potential effects of policy interventions, the costs and benefits of policy interventions, and modelling of the scale of impact that can be achieved through policy implementation. Furthermore, science can help stakeholders to explore complex systems and how they could change in the future, identifying not only potential win-wins, but also tradeoffs informing policies, regulations, and future planning [119][120][121][122][123] .Thus, the role of science is not to tell society what to do, but to inform what the consequences of different actions might be, to provide critical information of the costs and benefits of action, as well as inaction, to help policymakers along the decision-making process. This can be done in broad anticipatory exercises that explore big questions and challenges to better understand the policy option space. ...
... Although meat can be part of a healthy diet (Willett et al. 2019), personal health consequences, such as increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer (McAfee et al. 2010), should be taken into account. The current study shows that meat consumption is not only about men and their sex, but also about gender identity and new masculinity norms. ...
Article
Full-text available
Most meat-related research focuses on binary differences between men and women, ignoring differences within both genders. Through an online survey (N = 870), we investigate meat consumption behavior and how this is related to gender identity and new masculinity norms. The results confirm differences in meat consumption behavior between men and women, but also disclose more complicated differences within both groups, related to gender identity and agreement with masculinity norms. The findings also highlight the link between masculinity and red meat in particular , compared to white meat. The implications of this study for improving personal and environmental health are discussed.
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Global health will increasingly be determined by cities. Currently over half of the world’s population, over 4 billion people, live in cities. This systematic scoping review has been conducted to understand what cities are doing to improve health and healthcare for their populations. Methods We conducted a systematic search to identify literature on city-wide initiatives to improve health. The study was conducted in accordance with PRISMA and the protocol was registered with PROSPERO (CRD42020166210). Results The search identified 42,137 original citations, yielding 1,614 papers across 227 cities meeting the inclusion criteria. The results show the majority of initiatives were targeted at non-communicable diseases. City health departments are making an increasing contribution however the role of mayors appears to be limited. Conclusion The collective body of evidence identified in this review, built up over the last 130 years, has hitherto been poorly documented and characterised. Cities are a meta-system with population health dictated by multiple interactions and multidirectional feedback loops. Improving health in cities requires multiple actions, by multiple actors, at every level. The authors use the term ‘The Vital 5’. They are the 5 most important health risk factors; tobacco use; harmful alcohol use; physical-inactivity, unhealthy diet and planetary health. These ‘Vital 5’ are most concentrated in deprived areas and show the greatest increase is in low and middle income countries. Every city should develop a comprehensive strategy and action plan to address these ‘Vital 5’
Article
Patterns of protein intake are strong characteristics of diets, and protein sources have been linked to the environmental and nutrition/health impacts of diets. However, few studies have worked on protein profiles, and most of them have focused on specific diets like vegetarian or vegan diets. Furthermore, the description of the environmental impact of diets has often been limited to greenhouse gas emissions (GHGe) and land use. This paper analyzes the alignment of environmental pressures and nutritional impacts in a diversity of representative protein profiles of a western population. Using data from a representative survey in France (INCA3, n = 1125), we identified protein profiles using hierarchical ascendant classification on protein intake (g) from main protein sources (refined grains, whole grains, dairy, eggs, ruminant meat, poultry, pork, processed meat, fish, fruits & vegetables, pulses). We assessed their diet quality using 6 dietary scores, including assessment of long-term risk for health, and associated 14 environmental pressure indicators using the Agribalyse database completed by the SHARP database for GHGe. Five protein profiles were identified according to the high contributions of ruminant meat, pork, poultry, fish, or, conversely, as low contribution from meat. The profile including the lowest protein from meat had the lowest impact on almost all environmental indicators and had the lowest long-term risk. Conversely, the profile with high protein from ruminant-based foods had the highest pressures on most environmental indicators, including GHGe. We found that the protein profile with low contribution from meat has great potential for human health and environment preservation. Shifting a large part of the population toward this profile could be an easy first step toward building a more sustainable diet.
Preprint
Full-text available
Background With rising concerns regarding effects of red meat on human and environmental health, a growing number of livestock producers are exploring ways to improve animal and human health. A proposed way to achieve this is implementation of agro-ecological practices, including rotational grazing and pasture-finishing of locally-adapted ruminants. Additionally, growing consumer interest in pasture-finished meat (i.e., grass-fed) has raised several questions about its nutritional quality. Thus, the goal of this study was to determine the impact of two common finishing systems in North American bison—pasture-finished or pen-finished in confinement on concentrates for 146 days—on metabolomic, lipidomic, and fatty acid profiles. Striploins (M. longissimus lumborum) were collected for profiling. Results 671 out of 1570 (43%) compounds differed between pasture- and pen-finished conditions (n = 20 animals per group) (all, p < 0.05). Relative to pasture-finished animals, muscle of pen-finished animals displayed markers of excess glucose (~ 1.6-fold), triglycerides (~ 2-fold), oxidative stress (~ 1.5-fold), and proteolysis (~ 1.2-fold). In contrast, pasture-finished animals displayed improved mitochondrial metabolism (~ 1.3-fold higher levels of various Krebs cycle metabolites) and carnitine metabolism (~ 3 higher levels of long-chain acyl carnitines) (all p < 0.05). Pasture-finishing also concentrated higher levels of phenolics (~ 2.3-fold), alpha-tocopherol (~ 5.8 fold), carotene (~ 2.0 fold), and very long-chain fatty acids (saturated and unsaturated; ~1.3-fold) in meat, while having lower levels of common advanced lipoxidation (4-hydroxy-nonenal-glutathione; ~2-fold) and glycation end products (N6-carboxymethyllysine; ~1.7-fold) (all p < 0.05). In contrast, vitamins B5, B6, and C, and gamma-tocopherols were ~ 2.5-fold higher in the grain-fed animals (all p < 0.05); suggesting some concentrate feeding, or grazing plants rich in those compounds, may be beneficial. Conclusions Pasture-finishing (i.e., grass-fed) broadly improves bison metabolic health and potential health-promoting compounds in their meat compared to finishing on confinement on concentrates (i.e., pen-finished). Our data does not, however, indicate that meat from pen-finished bison is therefore unhealthy, as bison meat—irrespective of finishing practice—contained considerable amounts of amino acids, vitamins, phenolics, and a favorable omega 6:3 ratio. Our study represents one of the deepest meat profiling studies to date (> 1500 identified unique compounds), having revealed various previously unrecognized differences in animal metabolic health and meat nutritional composition as a result of finishing mode. Whether observed differences in nutritional profiles between finishing modes have an appreciable effect on human health remains to be determined.
Article
Measuring nutrition literacy should be an important tool to improve nutrition literacy and subsequently dietary behaviour at the population level, but also to identify individuals with limited nutrition literacy with the potential to define personalised interventions. In addition, a nutrition literacy assessment tool may allow standardisation of scientific outcomes of population-based nutritional behaviour intervention programmes. However, no such tool currently exists in the Czech Republic. This paper summarizes the existing tools for assessing nutrition or food literacy from abroad and aims to develop a suitable tool applicable to the Czech Republic. Key words: nutrition literacy, food literacy, health literacy, questionnaire, tool
Article
As a result of the increased crowding of the retail landscape with health and sustainability signals and hundreds of different certifications and claims, there is a growing need to determine the critical success factors and guidelines for professional practice. The current paper investigates how different combinations of signals impact consumers’ choice and willingness to pay (WTP). We identify and test two major certifications from a branding perspective. The results show that consumers will have a preference and higher WTP for fish filets with signals (certificates/tags or health/sustainability) that hold higher customer-based label equity (familiarity, understanding, trust) when shown in a choice-based situation. The results show the importance of a clear reference point, label equity (familiarity, understanding, trust), and customer values when using third-party certifications and/or simple taglines.
Article
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNAs that regulate gene expression. The wide-ranging biological activities of microRNAs stimulated research on disease mechanisms and is suggesting appealing therapeutic applications. When unprotected, miRNAs suffer from rapid degradation and appropriate strategies need to be developed to improve their therapeutic potential. Since the first observation of miRNAs being naturally transported by extracellular vesicles (EVs), the latter have been proposed as specific transport means for drug delivery, conferring stability and increasing resistance against RNase degradation. However, a standard, reproducible, and cost-effective protocol for EV isolation is lacking. Here, the use of broccoli-derived EVs as a therapeutic vehicle for extracellular RNA drug delivery was assessed. EVs were isolated from broccoli, combining ultracentrifugation and size exclusion chromatography methodology. Caco-2 cells were exposed to isolated EVs loaded with exogenous miRNAs and cellular viability was tested. The miRNAs were taken up by this intestinal cell line. Our results show that broccoli EVs can be efficiently isolated, characterized, and loaded with exogenous miRNAs, leading to toxicity in caco-2 cells. Because the pharmaceutical industry is searching for novel drug delivery nanovesicles with intrinsic properties such as low immunogenicity, stability to the gastrointestinal tract, ability to overcome biological barriers, large-scale production, cost-effectiveness, etc., broccoli-isolated nanovesicles might be suitable candidates for future pharmacological applications. We propose broccoli as a natural source of EVs, which are capable of transporting exogenous miRNAs with potential therapeutic effects and suggest that appropriate toxicological and randomized controlled trials as well as patent applications are warranted.
Article
Given the importance that current food-related challenges pose to our society, the potential of local food initiatives to address sustainability has gained increased attention. Nevertheless, research has increasingly demonstrated that local food initiatives are limited in fulfilling their sustainability potential. This realisation has led many scholars to argue that the path towards food system transformation needs to be based on interconnected networks of these ‘alternative’ practices—what this paper terms local food systems. Nevertheless, as many local food initiatives rely on funding and volunteer work, their capacity to create infrastructures for integrated approaches is limited. In this context, influential players—those who can provide resources, such as local authorities—become key in the assemblage of local food systems. However, there is limited understanding of how the role of local authorities affects the internal dynamics of local food systems and potential outcomes. This study addresses this research gap by analysing two case studies (Preston, England and Vitoria-Gasteiz, Basque Country). Using urban political ecology (UPE) as a theoretical framework, this study offers original insight into the key governance elements affecting the direction of local food systems and thus the alignment of diverse local food initiatives, limiting their sustainability potential. View Full-Text
Chapter
Mit der Globalisierung und Digitalisierung verändern sich tägliches Leben und Konsum weltweit. Für die Einzelnen ist es nahezu unmöglich, die Bedingungen und Folgen ihres Konsumhandelns zu erfassen. Gleichzeitig ist Konsum mit drängenden globalen Herausforderungen und einer (un-)nachhaltigen Entwicklung verbunden. Im Beitrag wird ein Konzept zum virtuellen Austausch (VA) in Verbindung mit der Ernährungs- und Verbraucherbildung (EVB) in der Hochschullehre zur Förderung der BNE vorgestellt und beispielhaft anhand eines deutsch-laotischen Kooperationsseminars illustriert. Dazu werden Ergebnisse einer Sichtung bestehender VA-Formate im Kontext der BNE skizziert und BNE-relevante konzeptionelle Elemente der EVB herausgearbeitet, um daran anschließend das hochschuldidaktische Konzept sowie Ergebnisse aus der Erprobung im Lehramtsstudium darzustellen und zu diskutieren. Diese Erkenntnisse können Anknüpfungspunkte für andere in Forschung und Lehre sein, die VA im Bereich der Agenda 2030 einsetzen möchten.
The transition toward more sustainable food systems, which already represents a central element of the European Farm to Fork and Green Deal strategies, could be an effective measure to contribute to global decarbonization and greenhouse gas (GHGs) reduction goals; concurrently, it could improve the health status and nutrition of the global population. In this context, the Mediterranean diet (MD) could play a considerable role, as it is generally recognized as a more balanced, healthy, and sustainable eating pattern than Western consumption patterns, which are characterized by excess food and high energy content, thus causing undesirable effects on both human health and the environment. Although traditionally linked to MD, Italy sees relatively moderate adherence by its citizens, as they consume about +75% of the daily caloric intake recommended by MD. Therefore, this study aims to quantitatively assess the potential environmental, economic, and health impacts of this lower adherence to MD by Italians. Current Italian Food Patterns (CIFP) in 2019 were analyzed and compared to the MD recommended amounts through a Life Cycle Thinking (LCT) approach (LCA) and carbon footprint (CF) analysis. The results show that CIFP, compared to MD, has +133% greater impacts on the environmental macro-area, +100% greater impacts on the human health macro-area, and +59% greater impacts on the economic macro-area (with annual fossil and mineral resource savings of $53.35 per person, $3.2 billion per year). The analysis also shows that CIFP has a CF of 6.54 × 101 kg CO2 eq, +142% over MD (2.7 × 101 kg CO2 eq), resulting in a lower environmental impact of the Mediterranean diet.
Chapter
Cellular agriculture refers to a broad set of emerging technologies that draw upon research in genomics and synthetic biology to produce biological compounds. Much of the interest in cellular agriculture stems from its potential as a way of producing high-quality proteins and other nutrients with reduced environmental impact. Cellular agriculture techniques are rapidly nearing commercial scales of production, in part due to the application of knowledge and techniques produced through genomics research related to gene expression, editing, and genome-scale data analytics. However, much remains unknown and there is little rigorous evidence to test these assertions. This chapter applies the UN Sustainable Development Goals as a lens through which to examine protein production using cellular agriculture, to understand how it may contribute to the development of more sustainable and resilient food system. We examine two emerging approaches to cellular agriculture—cultured meat and fermentation-derived dairy—and explore both the complexity and knowledge gaps that need to be filled to ensure these tools are deployed to help create a more sustainable future for all. This chapter concludes by proposing an agenda for future research and policy development.
Chapter
Recently, we have seen a growing demand for plant-based meat alternatives as more and more people want to replace the meat on their plate with a protein alternative of plant origin. Food manufacturers are able to make plant-based protein foods that simulate the taste and texture of meat. Fast food giants have introduced such meat alternatives for the growing population of flexitarians and others concerned for their own personal health and the health of the planet. But how healthy are these new products? What is their nutritional quality? Do they have adequate protein and iron? What about their sodium and saturated fat levels? Are they fortified and are they considered ultraprocessed foods? How do the different product formats compare with regular meat products both nutritionally and from a sustainability viewpoint? There is vast array of products available to meet various needs and satisfy every palate.
Chapter
In this chapter, I will argue that meat alternatives are a revolutionary innovation which will fundamentally change the way we produce and relate to food. First, I review the major ethical, environmental, and public health arguments against our current meat production system. Second, I discuss the ways in which the governments of the world are beginning to pay attention to these negative impacts of industrial animal agriculture, and move away from the current system. Third, I discuss four categories of alternative proteins, including their impact on health and sustainability, as well as their acceptability to consumers. Fourth, I argue that our current ideas of what is “edible” and “ethical” are socially constructed and will change over time as alternative proteins become more mainstream, eventually leading us to a tipping point, and a rapid transition to a “new normal” of alternative protein consumption. Overall, I argue that decoupling meat from animals is one of the most promising strategies we have in the fight against climate change.
Article
Background On 21–24 June 2022, the European Food Safety Authority, together with the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the European Chemicals Agency, the European Environment Agency, the European Medicines Agency, and the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission, held the “ONE – Health, Environment & Society – Conference 2022”. Scope and approach The conference brought together experts and stakeholders to reflect on how scientific advice related to food safety and nutrition will need to develop to respond to a fast-changing world. The event also explored how institutions that provide such advice should best prepare for the challenges ahead, and how they can contribute to policy targets and societal demands for safe, nutritious and sustainable food. Key findings and conclusions Overall, participants concluded that food safety assessments must be further advanced to remain fit for purpose and increase their relevance to society. To address the growing complexity in science and society, new ways of working that connect and integrate knowledge, data and expertise across a wide range of disciplines, sectors and actors must be embraced. One Health provides a valuable conceptual framework for advancing food safety assessments by ensuring the delivery of more integrated, cross-sectoral and collaborative health assessments. These assessments may help to better inform policies that support the transition towards a sustainable food system. As such, One Health could serve as a steppingstone to sustainable food. Urgent action is now required to define how the One Health principles can be implemented in food safety and nutrition.
Article
Excessive consumption of meat challenges global food security and environmental sustainability. In the mounting literature on identity as a motivator of behaviour, meat consumption has been associated with a handful of identities. Identity theory suggests that people hold multiple identities on different levels of abstraction, but how identities at different levels of abstraction interact and possibly co-determine intentions and behaviour remains largely unanswered. Inspired by research on attitudes and goal hierarchies, this study investigates a hierarchical model of meat-related identities and their relation to intentions to consume red meat. By means of a survey of Danish consumers (n = 1001), we identified identities related to the consumption of red meat (e.g., flexitarian identity), using confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modelling. We also controlled for the most important additional antecedents identified in prior research. Evidence was found that more abstract identities (e.g., national identity, environmental identity) mostly influence intentions to eat meat indirectly, meditated through more behaviour-specific identities (e.g., flexitarian identity). However, some higher-order identities also appear to have a direct impact on intentions to eat meat after controlling for more behaviour-specific identities, which suggests a less hierarchical structure manifesting itself, possibly due to the behaviour being instrumental at reaching different, functionally unrelated goals that are related to different identities. Policy recommendations towards reducing meat consumption are proposed.
Chapter
Consumer literature has looked into how consumers respond to protein alternatives, but this comparison has been haphazard. Sometimes alternatives are lumped together, sometimes individual cases are picked up and comparisons are made in various manners showing no consistency across studies. In the current chapter, we compare a range of protein alternatives against four consumer relevant dimensions: How much do they mimic or are products animal based? How heavily processed is the product? How clearly is it plant or animal based? How familiar is the protein source to consumers? Including relevant behavioral drivers of consumer acceptance for the various categories, this chapter provides an overview of how to compare various alternative proteins, and how consumer acceptance within these various categories can be understood. We found that protein alternatives often have unique profiles across all dimensions and research approaches, suggesting that understanding consumer response to different protein source requires different approaches.
Chapter
The question of whether animal farming is morally acceptable has been one of the most hotly debated topics in recent decades, among both academics and the public. Animal-sourced foods (ASFs) represent a special case within the food ethics debate as recent positions of environmental movements, based on the growing literature on the impacts (real or presumed) of farmed animals, have merged with long-standing animal rights activists' concerns about whether it is morally correct to raise (and kill) animals for human purposes. In the search for common ethical values (at least in perspective), since ethical rules are the result of a convention, it is preferable to adhere to some general principles (or fixed points), recognizable to all: the value of the human being, his/her right to a healthy diet that must include ASFs, but without neglecting the so-called \“rights\” of the animal to a dignified life, and the need for the planet to survive. This chapter is concerned with answering the following questions: (1) Is meat consumption morally justified? (2) How do beliefs, especially religious beliefs, influence moral attitudes toward meat consumption? (3) Is it morally justified to sacrifice animal life for human needs? (4) Is welfare the right response to animal rights claims? (5) Is meat production environmentally sustainable?
Article
Reaching healthy and sustainable diets for all people with the world's limited resources is one of the biggest challenges of humanity. The Healthy Reference Diet (HRD) is a recent proposal by the Eat-Lancet Commission for addressing this problem. Mexico has a high burden of obesity and persistent malnutrition. Recent national policies have focused on different strategies to transform the food system which include designing new dietary guidelines using the HRD adapted for the Mexican context and supporting small farmers to reduce food imports. The aim of the paper is to explore whether Mexico has enough land resources to produce food for a healthy and sustainable diet for its population, with no international trade, and what changes are needed to reach this in terms of diets, the food system, and in land use. Four scenarios are explored for changing the food system to reduce agricultural land use. The results show that Mexico has enough agricultural land to produce food for all its population to ensure healthy and sustainable diets with the current food supply chain. A healthy and sustainable diet demands 20 % to or 50 % less agricultural land, depending on the type of dietary recommendation, than the present average diet of the Mexican population. But changes are needed in the food system in terms of land use such as exchanging pasture for cropland and changing the type of crop production like reducing cropland for sugar cane and feed for livestock, and increasing cropland for legumes and nuts. Furthermore, reducing losses in the supply chain and increasing crop yields reduces considerably the demand of agricultural land. Further research is needed to explore the socioeconomic issues and policies for reaching these changes. The insights of this paper should be considered when designing policy strategies and recommendations to reach a sustainable food system.
Article
Seit 2020 hat sich die Lebenssituation, insbesondere die der Ärmsten, durch politische und umweltbedingte Krisen weiter verschärft. Lebensmittel erfüllen die basalen Grundbedürfnisse über Grenzen, Kulturen und Normen hinweg, gerade deshalb ist der Bereich ‚systemrelevant‘. Aber wie auch unterschiedliche Trends zeigen, braucht es sowohl auf individueller als auch auf gesellschaftlicher Ebene holistische Ansätze, um Alternativen zu finden. Im Einzelnen ist jeder gefragt, sein Verhalten souverän verantwortungsvoll zu gestalten und Aspekte der Ressourcengerechtigkeit im Großen wie im Kleinen zu integrieren.
Article
Background: The Mediterranean diet and other dietary patterns rich in fruits and vegetables have been linked to lower risk of frailty in older adults. However, not all plant-based diets are necessarily healthful, and no previous study has evaluated the role of the quality of plant-based dietary patterns in frailty risk. Our aim was to assess the association between plant-based diet quality and risk of frailty. Methods: Prospective cohort consisted with 82 234 women aged ≥60 years from the Nurses' Health Study, who were followed from 1990 through 2014. The dates of analysis were April 14 to June 23, 2021. Dietary data were collected every 4 years using a validated semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. The plant-based diet quality was assessed with two indices (range 18-90 points): (a) healthful plant-based diet index (hPDI), where healthy plant foods (whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, vegetable oils and tea/coffee) received positive scores, while less healthy plant foods (fruit juices, sweetened beverages, refined grains, potatoes, and sweets/desserts) and animal foods received reverse scores; and (b) unhealthful plant-based diet index (uPDI) where positive scores were given to less healthy plant foods and reverse scores to healthy plant foods and animal foods. Frailty incidence was assessed every 4 years, being defined as having three or more of the following five criteria from the FRAIL scale: fatigue, low strength, reduced aerobic capacity, having ≥5 illnesses and weight loss ≥5%. Multivariable-adjusted Cox proportional-hazards models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and their 95% confidence interval (CI). Results: We identified 12 910 incident cases of frailty over 1 176 401 person-year follow-up. In the multivariable analysis, the hPDI was inversely associated with the risk of frailty (hazard ratio [HR] for the highest vs. lowest quintile: 0.77, 95% confidence interval: 0.72-0.81; P trend <0.001). In addition, a 10-unit increment in the hPDI was associated with a relative 15% lower risk of frailty. Conversely, a direct association was found between the uPDI and risk of frailty (HR highest vs. lowest quintile: 1.24 [1.17, 1.32], P trend <0.001). These associations were consistent for each frailty criterion, among participants with no frailty criteria at baseline, after excluding participants with diabetes, cancer and cardiovascular disease at baseline, for alternative versions of the plant-based diet indices (PDIs), in subgroup analysis by categories of potential confounders, and in latency analysis. Conclusions: A healthful plant-based diet was associated with lower risk of frailty whereas an unhealthful plant-based diet was associated with higher risk.
Chapter
Book description: Meat and Meat Replacements: An Interdisciplinary Assessment of Current Status and Future Directions provides an interdisciplinary view on the production and consumption of food, challenges to the traditional meat industry, and potential meat replacements. This reference includes chapters on basic food science and technology of meat products and meat replacements as well as coverage of their nutritional value. Sensory and consumer research is addressed, as are the economics of these products, the environmental consequences, and ethical considerations related to the environment and to the products themselves. Meat and Meat Replacements is a helpful resource for food scientists, food and nutrition researchers, food engineers, product development scientists and managers, economists, and students studying meats and meat replacements.
Article
Full-text available
Background Sustainable plant-, algal-, and fungal-based alternative foods are required to feed the growing human population. The quality of such alternative foods depends not only on the nutrient content, but also on the amino acid composition and protein digestibility. The assessment of protein digestibility is typically considered at the level of ingredients, but these are blended and processed to formulate palatable foods. Scope and approach This review highlights the importance of nutritional quality in alternative foods by focusing on protein digestibility at the level of blends and formulated products. We consider the effects of processing on protein digestibility and the important role of the food matrix. Finally, we consider the colonic fermentation of undigested protein and the role of fiber in alternative foods. Key findings and conclusions Few studies have investigated protein digestibility after the blending and processing of ingredients derived from alternative protein sources or compared protein digestibility between animal-based and alternative food products. We find that processing can increase or decrease the in vitro protein digestibility of alternative foods, or in some cases has no effect. The architecture of the food matrix after processing requires further investigation as a determinant of protein digestibility-related food quality. Furthermore, the mastication of food has a significant impact on its protein digestibility, but most in vitro models do not include this step. To promote the production of beneficial metabolites during colonic fermentation, undigested protein should be accompanied by dietary fiber, even if this partially compromises the digestibility of the protein.
Article
Lock-in and path-dependency are well-known concepts in economics dealing with unbalanced development of alternative options. Lock-in was studied in various sectors, considering production or consumption sides. Lock-in in academic research went little addressed. Yet, science develops through knowledge accumulation and cross-fertilisation of research topics, that could lead to similar phenomena when some topics do not sufficiently benefit from accumulation mechanisms, reducing innovation opportunities from the concerned field consequently. We introduce an original method to explore these phenomena by comparing topic trajectories in research fields according to strong or weak accumulative processes over time. We combine the concepts of ‘niche’ and ‘mainstream’ from transition studies with scientometric tools to revisit Callon’s strategic diagram with a diachronic perspective of topic clusters over time. Considering the trajectories of semantic clusters, derived from titles and authors’ keywords extracted from scholarly publications in the Web of Science, we applied our method to two competing research fields in food sciences and technology related to pulses and soya over the last 60 years worldwide. These highly interesting species for the sustainability of agrifood systems experienced unbalanced development and thus is under-debated. Our analysis confirms that food research for soya was more dynamic than for pulses: soya topic clusters revealed a stronger accumulative research path by cumulating mainstream positions while pulses research did not meet the same success. This attempt to unpack research lock-in for evaluating the competition dynamics of scientific fields over time calls for future works, by strengthening the method and testing it on other research fields.
Article
Full-text available
Agriculture continues to be vital to Africa’s future in both spatial and temporal contexts. Nonetheless, the sector keeps on confronting production challenges as a result of frequent and extended droughts, and these necessitate the use of drought-resistant crops such as sorghum. This review initiates one of the most common food grains grown in the poorest countries and the most food-insecure regions of the nation. We used deductive logical reasoning to develop a comprehensive scientific understanding of the crop that can be used to inform future research and policies. Various exclusion and inclusion criteria were used to filter the most prominent findings. Sorghum has the highest utility for its climatic adaptability and has grown for multiple purposes: From staple to industrial outcomes, its economic, social value, and health outcomes, and for animal silage. It is a gluten-free crop, has high nutritive value, and is preferred by healthy consumers. It is among the top five cereal crops worldwide in both production and acreage. This has necessitated the development of coping measures, such as the cultivation of drought-tolerant crops suitable for the affected areas. Therefore, this crop is used to ensure productivity, food security, and availability of food when other crops fail and food deficit and famine are affected in the region. This will contribute to the ongoing discussion on how to better inform private and public sector policy and investments in Ethiopia to increase sorghum and other drought-tolerant crop production, transform agriculture, improve nutrition, and food systems, and end hunger, food insecurity, and poverty.
Article
Full-text available
The Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study 2016 (GBD 2016) provides a comprehensive assessment of risk factor exposure and attributable burden of disease. By providing estimates over a long time series, this study can monitor risk exposure trends critical to health surveillance and inform policy debates on the importance of addressing risks in context.We used the comparative risk assessment framework developed for previous iterations of GBD to estimate levels and trends in exposure, attributable deaths, and attributable disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs), by age group, sex, year, and location for 84 behavioural, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or clusters of risks from 1990 to 2016. This study included 481 risk-outcome pairs that met the GBD study criteria for convincing or probable evidence of causation. We extracted relative risk (RR) and exposure estimates from 22 717 randomised controlled trials, cohorts, pooled cohorts, household surveys, census data, satellite data, and other sources, according to the GBD 2016 source counting methods. Using the counterfactual scenario of theoretical minimum risk exposure level (TMREL), we estimated the portion of deaths and DALYs that could be attributed to a given risk. Finally, we explored four drivers of trends in attributable burden: population growth, population ageing, trends in risk exposure, and all other factors combined.Since 1990, exposure increased significantly for 30 risks, did not change significantly for four risks, and decreased significantly for 31 risks. Among risks that are leading causes of burden of disease, child growth failure and household air pollution showed the most significant declines, while metabolic risks, such as body-mass index and high fasting plasma glucose, showed significant increases. In 2016, at Level 3 of the hierarchy, the three leading risk factors in terms of attributable DALYs at the global level for men were smoking (124·1 million DALYs [95% UI 111·2 million to 137·0 million]), high systolic blood pressure (122·2 million DALYs [110·3 million to 133·3 million], and low birthweight and short gestation (83·0 million DALYs [78·3 million to 87·7 million]), and for women, were high systolic blood pressure (89·9 million DALYs [80·9 million to 98·2 million]), high body-mass index (64·8 million DALYs [44·4 million to 87·6 million]), and high fasting plasma glucose (63·8 million DALYs [53·2 million to 76·3 million]). In 2016 in 113 countries, the leading risk factor in terms of attributable DALYs was a metabolic risk factor. Smoking remained among the leading five risk factors for DALYs for 109 countries, while low birthweight and short gestation was the leading risk factor for DALYs in 38 countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. In terms of important drivers of change in trends of burden attributable to risk factors, between 2006 and 2016 exposure to risks explains an 9·3% (6·9-11·6) decline in deaths and a 10·8% (8·3-13·1) decrease in DALYs at the global level, while population ageing accounts for 14·9% (12·7-17·5) of deaths and 6·2% (3·9-8·7) of DALYs, and population growth for 12·4% (10·1-14·9) of deaths and 12·4% (10·1-14·9) of DALYs. The largest contribution of trends in risk exposure to disease burden is seen between ages 1 year and 4 years, where a decline of 27·3% (24·9-29·7) of the change in DALYs between 2006 and 2016 can be attributed to declines in exposure to risks.Increasingly detailed understanding of the trends in risk exposure and the RRs for each risk-outcome pair provide insights into both the magnitude of health loss attributable to risks and how modification of risk exposure has contributed to health trends. Metabolic risks warrant particular policy attention, due to their large contribution to global disease burden, increasing trends, and variable patterns across countries at the same level of development. GBD 2016 findings show that, while it has huge potential to improve health, risk modification has played a relatively small part in the past decade.The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies.
Article
Full-text available
Background The Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study (GBD) 2017 comparative risk assessment (CRA) is a comprehensive approach to risk factor quantification that offers a useful tool for synthesising evidence on risks and risk–outcome associations. With each annual GBD study, we update the GBD CRA to incorporate improved methods, new risks and risk–outcome pairs, and new data on risk exposure levels and risk–outcome associations. Methods We used the CRA framework developed for previous iterations of GBD to estimate levels and trends in exposure, attributable deaths, and attributable disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs), by age group, sex, year, and location for 84 behavioural, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or groups of risks from 1990 to 2017. This study included 476 risk–outcome pairs that met the GBD study criteria for convincing or probable evidence of causation. We extracted relative risk and exposure estimates from 46 749 randomised controlled trials, cohort studies, household surveys, census data, satellite data, and other sources. We used statistical models to pool data, adjust for bias, and incorporate covariates. Using the counterfactual scenario of theoretical minimum risk exposure level (TMREL), we estimated the portion of deaths and DALYs that could be attributed to a given risk. We explored the relationship between development and risk exposure by modelling the relationship between the Socio-demographic Index (SDI) and risk-weighted exposure prevalence and estimated expected levels of exposure and risk-attributable burden by SDI. Finally, we explored temporal changes in risk-attributable DALYs by decomposing those changes into six main component drivers of change as follows: (1) population growth; (2) changes in population age structures; (3) changes in exposure to environmental and occupational risks; (4) changes in exposure to behavioural risks; (5) changes in exposure to metabolic risks; and (6) changes due to all other factors, approximated as the risk-deleted death and DALY rates, where the risk-deleted rate is the rate that would be observed had we reduced the exposure levels to the TMREL for all risk factors included in GBD 2017. Findings In 2017, 34·1 million (95% uncertainty interval [UI] 33·3–35·0) deaths and 1·21 billion (1·14–1·28) DALYs were attributable to GBD risk factors. Globally, 61·0% (59·6–62·4) of deaths and 48·3% (46·3–50·2) of DALYs were attributed to the GBD 2017 risk factors. When ranked by risk-attributable DALYs, high systolic blood pressure (SBP) was the leading risk factor, accounting for 10·4 million (9·39–11·5) deaths and 218 million (198–237) DALYs, followed by smoking (7·10 million [6·83–7·37] deaths and 182 million [173–193] DALYs), high fasting plasma glucose (6·53 million [5·23–8·23] deaths and 171 million [144–201] DALYs), high body-mass index (BMI; 4·72 million [2·99–6·70] deaths and 148 million [98·6–202] DALYs), and short gestation for birthweight (1·43 million [1·36–1·51] deaths and 139 million [131–147] DALYs). In total, risk-attributable DALYs declined by 4·9% (3·3–6·5) between 2007 and 2017. In the absence of demographic changes (ie, population growth and ageing), changes in risk exposure and risk-deleted DALYs would have led to a 23·5% decline in DALYs during that period. Conversely, in the absence of changes in risk exposure and risk-deleted DALYs, demographic changes would have led to an 18·6% increase in DALYs during that period. The ratios of observed risk exposure levels to exposure levels expected based on SDI (O/E ratios) increased globally for unsafe drinking water and household air pollution between 1990 and 2017. This result suggests that development is occurring more rapidly than are changes in the underlying risk structure in a population. Conversely, nearly universal declines in O/E ratios for smoking and alcohol use indicate that, for a given SDI, exposure to these risks is declining. In 2017, the leading Level 4 risk factor for age-standardised DALY rates was high SBP in four super-regions: central Europe, eastern Europe, and central Asia; north Africa and Middle East; south Asia; and southeast Asia, east Asia, and Oceania. The leading risk factor in the high-income super-region was smoking, in Latin America and Caribbean was high BMI, and in sub-Saharan Africa was unsafe sex. O/E ratios for unsafe sex in sub-Saharan Africa were notably high, and those for alcohol use in north Africa and the Middle East were notably low. Interpretation By quantifying levels and trends in exposures to risk factors and the resulting disease burden, this assessment offers insight into where past policy and programme efforts might have been successful and highlights current priorities for public health action. Decreases in behavioural, environmental, and occupational risks have largely offset the effects of population growth and ageing, in relation to trends in absolute burden. Conversely, the combination of increasing metabolic risks and population ageing will probably continue to drive the increasing trends in non-communicable diseases at the global level, which presents both a public health challenge and opportunity. We see considerable spatiotemporal heterogeneity in levels of risk exposure and risk-attributable burden. Although levels of development underlie some of this heterogeneity, O/E ratios show risks for which countries are overperforming or underperforming relative to their level of development. As such, these ratios provide a benchmarking tool to help to focus local decision making. Our findings reinforce the importance of both risk exposure monitoring and epidemiological research to assess causal connections between risks and health outcomes, and they highlight the usefulness of the GBD study in synthesising data to draw comprehensive and robust conclusions that help to inform good policy and strategic health planning.
Article
Full-text available
The food system is a major driver of climate change, changes in land use, depletion of freshwater resources, and pollution of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems through excessive nitrogen and phosphorus inputs. Here we show that between 2010 and 2050, as a result of expected changes in population and income levels, the environmental effects of the food system could increase by 50–90% in the absence of technological changes and dedicated mitigation measures, reaching levels that are beyond the planetary boundaries that define a safe operating space for humanity. We analyse several options for reducing the environmental effects of the food system, including dietary changes towards healthier, more plant-based diets, improvements in technologies and management, and reductions in food loss and waste. We find that no single measure is enough to keep these effects within all planetary boundaries simultaneously, and that a synergistic combination of measures will be needed to sufficiently mitigate the projected increase in environmental pressures.
Article
Full-text available
This study was conducted to investigate body mass index (BMI), levels of cholesterol and triglycerides in prison inmates at the Institution for Reform and Rehabilitation in Southern Libya to be considered as an indication about their health and the provided foods. The results of this study showed that 26.5% of BMI of the prison inmates were found to be higher than the normal levels. Generally, the average level of cholesterol and triglycerides concentrations were found to be within normal range 142.6 mg/dl and 135.4 mg/dl, respectively. The findings also established that there were a significant relationship and direct correlation between BMI levels and age and concentration of cholesterol and triglycerides levels. The results of this showed that the served foods for these prison inmates are well balanced as indicated by their cholesterol and triglycerides levels.
Article
Full-text available
Evidence shows the importance of food systems for sustainable development: they are at the nexus that links food security, nutrition, and human health, the viability of ecosystems, climate change, and social justice. However, agricultural policies tend to focus on food supply, and sometimes, on mechanisms to address negative externalities. We propose an alternative. Our starting point is that agriculture and food systems’ policies should be aligned to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This calls for deep changes in comparison with the paradigms that prevailed when steering the agricultural change in the XXth century. We identify the comprehensive food systems transformation that is needed. It has four parts: first, food systems should enable all people to benefit from nutritious and healthy food. Second, they should reflect sustainable agricultural production and food value chains. Third, they should mitigate climate change and build resilience. Fourth, they should encourage a renaissance of rural territories. The implementation of the transformation relies on (i) suitable metrics to aid decision-making, (ii) synergy of policies through convergence of local and global priorities, and (iii) enhancement of development approaches that focus on territories. We build on the work of the “Milano Group,” an informal group of experts convened by the UN Secretary General in Milan in 2015. Backed by a literature review, what emerges is a strategic narrative linking climate, agriculture and food, and calling for a deep transformation of food systems at scale. This is critical for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement. The narrative highlights the needed consistency between global actions for sustainable development and numerous local-level innovations. It emphasizes the challenge of designing differentiated paths for food systems transformation responding to local and national expectations. Scientific and operational challenges are associated with the alignment and arbitration of local action within the context of global priorities.
Article
Full-text available
Background Observational cohort studies and a secondary prevention trial have shown inverse associations between adherence to the Mediterranean diet and cardiovascular risk. Methods In a multicenter trial in Spain, we assigned 7447 participants (55 to 80 years of age, 57% women) who were at high cardiovascular risk, but with no cardiovascular disease at enrollment, to one of three diets: a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil, a Mediterranean diet supplemented with mixed nuts, or a control diet (advice to reduce dietary fat). Participants received quarterly educational sessions and, depending on group assignment, free provision of extra-virgin olive oil, mixed nuts, or small nonfood gifts. The primary end point was a major cardiovascular event (myocardial infarction, stroke, or death from cardiovascular causes). After a median follow-up of 4.8 years, the trial was stopped on the basis of a prespecified interim analysis. In 2013, we reported the results for the primary end point in the Journal. We subsequently identified protocol deviations, including enrollment of household members without randomization, assignment to a study group without randomization of some participants at 1 of 11 study sites, and apparent inconsistent use of randomization tables at another site. We have withdrawn our previously published report and now report revised effect estimates based on analyses that do not rely exclusively on the assumption that all the participants were randomly assigned. Results A primary end-point event occurred in 288 participants; there were 96 events in the group assigned to a Mediterranean diet with extra-virgin olive oil (3.8%), 83 in the group assigned to a Mediterranean diet with nuts (3.4%), and 109 in the control group (4.4%). In the intention-to-treat analysis including all the participants and adjusting for baseline characteristics and propensity scores, the hazard ratio was 0.69 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.53 to 0.91) for a Mediterranean diet with extra-virgin olive oil and 0.72 (95% CI, 0.54 to 0.95) for a Mediterranean diet with nuts, as compared with the control diet. Results were similar after the omission of 1588 participants whose study-group assignments were known or suspected to have departed from the protocol. Conclusions In this study involving persons at high cardiovascular risk, the incidence of major cardiovascular events was lower among those assigned to a Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil or nuts than among those assigned to a reduced-fat diet. (Funded by Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Spanish Ministry of Health, and others; Current Controlled Trials number, ISRCTN35739639.)
Article
Full-text available
Dariush Mozaffarian and colleagues review strategies governments can use to improve nutrition and health © Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to.
Article
Full-text available
The Lancet Countdown tracks progress on health and climate change and provides an independent assessment of the health effects of climate change, the implementation of the Paris Agreement, and the health implications of these actions. It follows on from the work of the 2015 Lancet Commission on Health and Climate Change, which concluded that anthropogenic climate change threatens to undermine the past 50 years of gains in public health, and conversely, that a comprehensive response to climate change could be “the greatest global health opportunity of the 21st century”. The Lancet Countdown is a collaboration between 24 academic institutions and intergovernmental organisations based in every continent and with representation from a wide range of disciplines. The collaboration includes climate scientists, ecologists, economists, engineers, experts in energy, food, and transport systems, geographers, mathematicians, social and political scientists, public health professionals, and doctors. It reports annual indicators across five sections: climate change impacts, exposures, and vulnerability; adaptation planning and resilience for health; mitigation actions and health co-benefits; economics and finance; and public and political engagement. The key messages from the 40 indicators in the Lancet Countdown’s 2017 report are summarised below.
Article
Full-text available
A large body of research has explored opportunities to mitigate climate change in agricultural systems; however, less research has explored opportunities across the food system. Here we expand the existing research with a review of potential mitigation opportunities across the entire food system, including in pre-production, production, processing, transport, consumption and loss and waste. We detail and synthesize recent research on the topic, and explore the applicability of different climate mitigation strategies in varying country contexts with different economic and agricultural systems. Further, we highlight some potential adaptation co-benefits of food system mitigation strategies and explore the potential implications of such strategies on food systems as a whole. We suggest that a food systems research approach is greatly needed to capture such potential synergies, and highlight key areas of additional research including a greater focus on low- and middle-income countries in particular. We conclude by discussing the policy and finance opportunities needed to advance mitigation strategies in food systems.
Article
Full-text available
Benefits of a Mediterranean diet for cognition have been suggested, but epidemiologic studies have been relatively small and of limited duration. To prospectively assess the association between long-term adherence to a Mediterranean dietary pattern and self-reported subjective cognitive function (SCF). Prospective observational study. The Health Professionals’ Follow-up Study, a prospective cohort of 51,529 men, 40–75 years of age when enrolled in 1986, of whom 27,842 were included in the primary analysis. Mediterranean diet (MD) score, computed from the mean of five food frequency questionnaires, assessed every 4 years from 1986 to 2002. Self-reported SCF assessed by a 6-item questionnaire in 2008 and 2012, and validated by association with genetic variants in apolipoprotein-4. Using the average of 2008 and 2012 SCF scores, 38.0% of men were considered to have moderate memory scores and 7.3% were considered to have poor scores. In a multivariate model, compared with men having a MD score in the lowest quintile, those in the highest quintile had a 36% lower odds of a poor SCF score (odds ratio 0.64, 95% CI 0.55–0.75; P, trend < 0.001) and a 24% lower odds of a moderate SCF score (OR 0.76, 95% CI 0.70–0.83; P, trend < 0.001). Both remote and more recent diet contributed to this relation. Associations were only slightly weaker using baseline dietary data and a lag of 22 years. Long-term adherence to the Mediterranean diet pattern was strongly related to lower subjective cognitive function. These findings provide further evidence that a healthy dietary pattern may prevent or delay cognitive decline.
Article
Full-text available
Is active restoration the best approach to achieve ecological restoration success (the return to a reference condition, that is, old-growth forest) when compared to natural regeneration in tropical forests? Our meta-analysis of 133 studies demonstrated that natural regeneration surpasses active restoration in achieving tropical forest restoration success for all three biodiversity groups (plants, birds, and invertebrates) and five measures of vegetation structure (cover, density, litter, biomass, and height) tested. Restoration success for biodiversity and vegetation structure was 34 to 56% and 19 to 56% higher in natural regeneration than in active restoration systems, respectively, after controlling for key biotic and abiotic factors (forest cover, precipitation, time elapsed since restoration started, and past disturbance). Biodiversity responses were based primarily on ecological metrics of abundance and species richness (74%), both of which take far less time to achieve restoration success than similarity and composition. This finding challenges the widely held notion that natural forest regeneration has limited conservation value and that active restoration should be the default ecological restoration strategy. The proposition that active restoration achieves greater restoration success than natural regeneration may have arisen because previous comparisons lacked controls for biotic and abiotic factors; we also did not find any difference between active restoration and natural regeneration outcomes for vegetation structure when we did not control for these factors. Future policy priorities should align the identified patterns of biophysical and ecological conditions where each or both restoration approaches are more successful, cost-effective, and compatible with socioeconomic incentives for tropical forest restoration.
Article
Full-text available
Better stewardship of land is needed to achieve the Paris Climate Agreement goal of holding warming to below 2 °C; however, confusion persists about the specific set of land stewardship options available and their mitigation potential. To address this, we identify and quantify "natural climate solutions" (NCS): 20 conservation, restoration , and improved land management actions that increase carbon storage and/or avoid greenhouse gas emissions across global forests, wetlands, grasslands, and agricultural lands. We find that the maximum potential of NCS-when constrained by food security, fiber security, and biodiversity conservation-is 23.8 petagrams of CO 2 equivalent (PgCO 2 e) y −1 (95% CI 20.3-37.4). This is ≥30% higher than prior estimates, which did not include the full range of options and safeguards considered here. About half of this maximum (11.3 PgCO 2 e y −1) represents cost-effective climate mitigation, assuming the social cost of CO 2 pollution is ≥100 USD MgCO 2 e −1 by 2030. Natural climate solutions can provide 37% of cost-effective CO 2 mit-igation needed through 2030 for a >66% chance of holding warming to below 2 °C. One-third of this cost-effective NCS mitigation can be delivered at or below 10 USD MgCO 2 −1. Most NCS actions-if effectively implemented-also offer water filtration, flood buffer-ing, soil health, biodiversity habitat, and enhanced climate resilience. Work remains to better constrain uncertainty of NCS mitigation estimates. Nevertheless, existing knowledge reported here provides a robust basis for immediate global action to improve ecosystem stewardship as a major solution to climate change. climate mitigation | forests | agriculture | wetlands | ecosystems
Article
Full-text available
Global declines in insects have sparked wide interest among scientists, politicians, and the general public. Loss of insect diversity and abundance is expected to provoke cascading effects on food webs and to jeopardize ecosystem services. Our understanding of the extent and underlying causes of this decline is based on the abundance of single species or taxo-nomic groups only, rather than changes in insect biomass which is more relevant for ecological functioning. Here, we used a standardized protocol to measure total insect biomass using Malaise traps, deployed over 27 years in 63 nature protection areas in Germany (96 unique location-year combinations) to infer on the status and trend of local entomofauna. Our analysis estimates a seasonal decline of 76%, and midsummer decline of 82% in flying insect biomass over the 27 years of study. We show that this decline is apparent regardless of habitat type, while changes in weather, land use, and habitat characteristics cannot explain this overall decline. This yet unrecognized loss of insect biomass must be taken into account in evaluating declines in abundance of species depending on insects as a food source, and ecosystem functioning in the European landscape.
Article
Full-text available
Background: The Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study 2016 (GBD 2016) provides a comprehensive assessment of risk factor exposure and attributable burden of disease. By providing estimates over a long time series, this study can monitor risk exposure trends critical to health surveillance and inform policy debates on the importance of addressing risks in context. Methods: We used the comparative risk assessment framework developed for previous iterations of GBD to estimate levels and trends in exposure, attributable deaths, and attributable disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs), by age group, sex, year, and location for 84 behavioural, environmental and occupational, and metabolic risks or clusters of risks from 1990 to 2016. This study included 481 risk-outcome pairs that met the GBD study criteria for convincing or probable evidence of causation. We extracted relative risk (RR) and exposure estimates from 22 717 randomised controlled trials, cohorts, pooled cohorts, household surveys, census data, satellite data, and other sources, according to the GBD 2016 source counting methods. Using the counterfactual scenario of theoretical minimum risk exposure level (TMREL), we estimated the portion of deaths and DALYs that could be attributed to a given risk. Finally, we explored four drivers of trends in attributable burden: population growth, population ageing, trends in risk exposure, and all other factors combined. Findings: Since 1990, exposure increased significantly for 30 risks, did not change significantly for four risks, and decreased significantly for 31 risks. Among risks that are leading causes of burden of disease, child growth failure and household air pollution showed the most significant declines, while metabolic risks, such as body-mass index and high fasting plasma glucose, showed significant increases. In 2016, at Level 3 of the hierarchy, the three leading risk factors in terms of attributable DALYs at the global level for men were smoking (124·1 million DALYs [95% UI 111·2 million to 137·0 million]), high systolic blood pressure (122·2 million DALYs [110·3 million to 133·3 million], and low birthweight and short gestation (83·0 million DALYs [78·3 million to 87·7 million]), and for women, were high systolic blood pressure (89·9 million DALYs [80·9 million to 98·2 million]), high body-mass index (64·8 million DALYs [44·4 million to 87·6 million]), and high fasting plasma glucose (63·8 million DALYs [53·2 million to 76·3 million]). In 2016 in 113 countries, the leading risk factor in terms of attributable DALYs was a metabolic risk factor. Smoking remained among the leading five risk factors for DALYs for 109 countries, while low birthweight and short gestation was the leading risk factor for DALYs in 38 countries, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. In terms of important drivers of change in trends of burden attributable to risk factors, between 2006 and 2016 exposure to risks explains an 9·3% (6·9-11·6) decline in deaths and a 10·8% (8·3-13·1) decrease in DALYs at the global level, while population ageing accounts for 14·9% (12·7-17·5) of deaths and 6·2% (3·9-8·7) of DALYs, and population growth for 12·4% (10·1-14·9) of deaths and 12·4% (10·1-14·9) of DALYs. The largest contribution of trends in risk exposure to disease burden is seen between ages 1 year and 4 years, where a decline of 27·3% (24·9-29·7) of the change in DALYs between 2006 and 2016 can be attributed to declines in exposure to risks. Interpretation: Increasingly detailed understanding of the trends in risk exposure and the RRs for each risk-outcome pair provide insights into both the magnitude of health loss attributable to risks and how modification of risk exposure has contributed to health trends. Metabolic risks warrant particular policy attention, due to their large contribution to global disease burden, increasing trends, and variable patterns across countries at the same level of development. GBD 2016 findings show that, while it has huge potential to improve health, risk modification has played a relatively small part in the past decade. Funding: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies.
Article
Full-text available
Background: The relationship between macronutrients and cardiovascular disease and mortality is controversial. Most available data are from European and North American populations where nutrition excess is more likely, so their applicability to other populations is unclear. Methods: The Prospective Urban Rural Epidemiology (PURE) study is a large, epidemiological cohort study of individuals aged 35-70 years (enrolled between Jan 1, 2003, and March 31, 2013) in 18 countries with a median follow-up of 7·4 years (IQR 5·3-9·3). Dietary intake of 135 335 individuals was recorded using validated food frequency questionnaires. The primary outcomes were total mortality and major cardiovascular events (fatal cardiovascular disease, non-fatal myocardial infarction, stroke, and heart failure). Secondary outcomes were all myocardial infarctions, stroke, cardiovascular disease mortality, and non-cardiovascular disease mortality. Participants were categorised into quintiles of nutrient intake (carbohydrate, fats, and protein) based on percentage of energy provided by nutrients. We assessed the associations between consumption of carbohydrate, total fat, and each type of fat with cardiovascular disease and total mortality. We calculated hazard ratios (HRs) using a multivariable Cox frailty model with random intercepts to account for centre clustering. Findings: During follow-up, we documented 5796 deaths and 4784 major cardiovascular disease events. Higher carbohydrate intake was associated with an increased risk of total mortality (highest [quintile 5] vs lowest quintile [quintile 1] category, HR 1·28 [95% CI 1·12-1·46], ptrend=0·0001) but not with the risk of cardiovascular disease or cardiovascular disease mortality. Intake of total fat and each type of fat was associated with lower risk of total mortality (quintile 5 vs quintile 1, total fat: HR 0·77 [95% CI 0·67-0·87], ptrend<0·0001; saturated fat, HR 0·86 [0·76-0·99], ptrend=0·0088; monounsaturated fat: HR 0·81 [0·71-0·92], ptrend<0·0001; and polyunsaturated fat: HR 0·80 [0·71-0·89], ptrend<0·0001). Higher saturated fat intake was associated with lower risk of stroke (quintile 5 vs quintile 1, HR 0·79 [95% CI 0·64-0·98], ptrend=0·0498). Total fat and saturated and unsaturated fats were not significantly associated with risk of myocardial infarction or cardiovascular disease mortality. Interpretation: High carbohydrate intake was associated with higher risk of total mortality, whereas total fat and individual types of fat were related to lower total mortality. Total fat and types of fat were not associated with cardiovascular disease, myocardial infarction, or cardiovascular disease mortality, whereas saturated fat had an inverse association with stroke. Global dietary guidelines should be reconsidered in light of these findings. Funding: Full funding sources listed at the end of the paper (see Acknowledgments).
Article
Full-text available
Background This systematic review (PROSPERO: CRD42015025276) employs a realist approach to investigate the effect of “real-world” policies targeting different aspects of the food environment that shape individual and collective nutrition. Objectives We were interested in assessing intermediate outcomes along the assumed causal pathway to “policy success”, in addition to the final outcome of changed consumption patterns. Data sources We performed a search of 16 databases through October 2015, with no initial restriction by language. Study eligibility criteria We included all publications that reported the effect of statutory provisions aimed at reducing the consumption of energy-dense foods and beverages in the general population. We allowed all methodological approaches that contained some measure of comparison, including studies of implementation progress. Study appraisal and synthesis methods We reviewed included studies using the appraisal tools for pre-post and observational studies developed by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Given the considerable heterogeneity in interventions assessed, study designs employed, and outcome measures reported, we opted for a narrative synthesis of results. Results and implications Results drawn from 36 peer-reviewed articles and grey literature reports demonstrated that isolated regulatory interventions can improve intermediate outcomes, but fail to affect consumption at clinically significant levels. The included literature covered six different types of interventions, with 19 studies reporting on calorie posting on chain restaurant menus. The large majority of the identified interventions were conducted in the US. Early results from recent taxation measures were published after the review cut-off date but these suggested more favorable effects on consumption levels. Nevertheless, the evidence assessed in this review suggests that current policies are generally falling short of anticipated health impacts.
Article
Full-text available
The population extinction pulse we describe here shows, from a quantitative viewpoint, that Earth’s sixth mass extinction is more severe than perceived when looking exclusively at species extinctions. Therefore, humanity needs to address anthropogenic population extirpation and decimation immediately. That conclusion is based on analyses of the numbers and degrees of range contraction (indicative of population shrinkage and/or population extinctions according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature) using a sample of 27,600 vertebrate species, and on a more detailed analysis documenting the population extinctions between 1900 and 2015 in 177 mammal species. We find that the rate of population loss in terrestrial vertebrates is extremely high—even in “species of low concern.” In our sample, comprising nearly half of known vertebrate species, 32% (8,851/27,600) are decreasing; that is, they have decreased in population size and range. In the 177 mammals for which we have detailed data, all have lost 30% or more of their geographic ranges and more than 40% of the species have experienced severe population declines (>80% range shrinkage). Our data indicate that beyond global species extinctions Earth is experiencing a huge episode of population declines and extirpations, which will have negative cascading consequences on ecosystem functioning and services vital to sustaining civilization. We describe this as a “biological annihilation” to highlight the current magnitude of Earth’s ongoing sixth major extinction event.
Article
Full-text available
Global agricultural feeds over 7 billion people, but is also a leading cause of environmental degradation. Understanding how alternative agricultural production systems, agricultural input efficiency, and food choice drive environmental degradation is necessary for reducing agriculture's environmental impacts. A meta-analysis of life cycle assessments that includes 742 agricultural systems and over 90 unique foods produced primarily in high-input systems shows that, per unit of food, organic systems require more land, cause more eutrophication, use less energy, but emit similar greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) as conventional systems; that grass-fed beef requires more land and emits similar GHG emissions as grain-feed beef; and that low-input aquaculture and non-trawling fisheries have much lower GHG emissions than trawling fisheries. In addition, our analyses show that increasing agricultural input efficiency (the amount of food produced per input of fertilizer or feed) would have environmental benefits for both crop and livestock systems. Further, for all environmental indicators and nutritional units examined, plant-based foods have the lowest environmental impacts; eggs, dairy, pork, poultry, non-trawling fisheries, and non-recirculating aquaculture have intermediate impacts; and ruminant meat has impacts ~100 times those of plant-based foods. Our analyses show that dietary shifts towards low-impact foods and increases in agricultural input use efficiency would offer larger environmental benefits than would switches from conventional agricultural systems to alternatives such as organic agriculture or grass-fed beef.
Article
Full-text available
Background: Eggs are a good source of nutrients for growth and development. We hypothesized that introducing eggs early during complementary feeding would improve child nutrition. Methods: A randomized controlled trial was conducted in Cotopaxi Province, Ecuador, from March to December 2015. Children ages 6 to 9 months were randomly assigned to treatment (1 egg per day for 6 months [n = 83]) and control (no intervention [n = 80]) groups. Both arms received social marketing messages to encourage participation in the Lulun Project (lulun meaning "egg" in Kichwa). All households were visited once per week to monitor morbidity symptoms, distribute eggs, and monitor egg intakes (for egg group only). Baseline and end point outcome measures included anthropometry, dietary intake frequencies, and morbidity symptoms. Results: Mothers or other caregivers reported no allergic reactions to the eggs. Generalized linear regression modeling showed the egg intervention increased length-for-age z score by 0.63 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.38-0.88) and weight-for-age z score by 0.61 (95% CI, 0.45-0.77). Log-binomial models with robust Poisson indicated a reduced prevalence of stunting by 47% (prevalence ratio [PR], 0.53; 95% CI, 0.37-0.77) and underweight by 74% (PR, 0.26; 95% CI, 0.10-0.70). Children in the treatment group had higher dietary intakes of eggs (PR, 1.57; 95% CI, 1.28-1.92) and reduced intake of sugar-sweetened foods (PR, 0.71; 95% CI, 0.51-0.97) compared with control. Conclusions: The findings supported our hypothesis that early introduction of eggs significantly improved growth in young children. Generally accessible to vulnerable groups, eggs have the potential to contribute to global targets to reduce stunting.
Article
Full-text available
Cultured meat production is an innovative and emerging process to produce animal meat in laboratories, using tissue-engineering techniques. This novel approach to produce meat involves in vitro culture of the animal muscle tissues rather than rearing whole animals to obtain animal flesh for consumption. Conventional meat production results in several adverse consequences such as poor nutritional value of meat, food-borne diseases, depletion of environmental resources, pollution etc., associated with animal slaughter. Cultured meat, on the other hand, is essentially an animal-free harvest produced in controlled conditions. Cultured meat can provide healthier, safer, and disease-free meat to consumers, as well as mitigate the negative environmental effects associated with traditional meat production. Academically, this new method is considered adequately efficient to supply meat and meat products to consumers. However, in vitro cultured meat production is still in the early stages of development and requires in-depth research and advanced technical skills for optimized production and commercialization. This review focuses on the history and development of cultured meat production, with insights on the advantages, consequences, and potential of animal-free meat harvest.
Article
Full-text available
We evaluated the relations of red meat, poultry, fish and shellfish, as well as heme iron intake, with risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D).The Singapore Chinese Health Study is a population-based cohort that recruited 63,257 Chinese adults aged 45-74 years from 1993 to 1998. Usual diet was evaluated by a validated 165-item semi-quantitative food-frequency questionnaire at recruitment. Physician-diagnosed T2D was self-reported during two follow-up interviews in 1999-2004 and 2006-2010. During a mean follow-up of 10.9 years, 5207 incident cases of T2D were reported. The multivariate-adjusted HR (95% CI) for T2D comparing highest versus the lowest quartiles was 1.23 (1.14, 1.33) for red meat (P for trend < 0.001), 1.15 (1.06, 1.24) for poultry (P for trend = 0.004), and 1.07 (0.99, 1.16) for fish/shellfish (P for trend = 0.12). After additional adjustment for heme iron, only red meat intake remained significantly associated with T2D risk (1.13; 1.01, 1.25; P for trend = 0.02). Heme iron was associated with increased T2D risk even after additionally adjusted for red meat (1.14; 1.02, 1.28; P for trend = 0.03).In conclusion, red meat and poultry intake was associated with an increased risk of T2D. These associations were mediated by heme iron, for poultry completely but partially for red meat.
Article
Full-text available
Objective To determine the association of different types of meat intake and meat associated compounds with overall and cause specific mortality. Design Population based cohort study. Setting Baseline dietary data of the NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study (prospective cohort of the general population from six states and two metropolitan areas in the US) and 16 year follow-up data until 31 December 2011. Participants 536 969 AARP members aged 50-71 at baseline. Exposures Intake of total meat, processed and unprocessed red meat (beef, lamb, and pork) and white meat (poultry and fish), heme iron, and nitrate/nitrite from processed meat based on dietary questionnaire. Adjusted Cox proportional hazards regression models were used with the lowest fifth of calorie adjusted intakes as reference categories. Main outcome measure Mortality from any cause during follow-up. Results An increased risk of all cause mortality (hazard ratio for highest versus lowest fifth 1.26, 95% confidence interval 1.23 to 1.29) and death due to nine different causes associated with red meat intake was observed. Both processed and unprocessed red meat intakes were associated with all cause and cause specific mortality. Heme iron and processed meat nitrate/nitrite were independently associated with increased risk of all cause and cause specific mortality. Mediation models estimated that the increased mortality associated with processed red meat was influenced by nitrate intake (37.0-72.0%) and to a lesser degree by heme iron (20.9-24.1%). When the total meat intake was constant, the highest fifth of white meat intake was associated with a 25% reduction in risk of all cause mortality compared with the lowest intake level. Almost all causes of death showed an inverse association with white meat intake. Conclusions The results show increased risks of all cause mortality and death due to nine different causes associated with both processed and unprocessed red meat, accounted for, in part, by heme iron and nitrate/nitrite from processed meat. They also show reduced risks associated with substituting white meat, particularly unprocessed white meat.
Article
Full-text available
Animal products, i.e. meat, milk and eggs, provide an important component in global diets, but livestock dominate agricultural land use by area and are a major source of greenhouse gases. Cultural and personal associations with animal product consumption create barriers to moderating consumption, and hence reduced environmental impacts. Here we review alternatives to conventional animal products, including cultured meat, imitation meat and insects (i.e. entomophagy), and explore the potential change in global agricultural land requirements associated with each alternative. Stylised transformative consumption scenarios where half of current conventional animal products are substituted to provide at least equal protein and calories are considered. The analysis also considers and compares the agricultural land area given shifts between conventional animal product consumption. The results suggest that imitation meat and insects have the highest land use efficiency, but the land use requirements are only slightly greater for eggs and poultry meat. The efficiency of insects and their ability to convert agricultural by-products and food waste into food, suggests further research into insect production is warranted. Cultured meat does not appear to offer substantial benefits over poultry meat or eggs, with similar conversion efficiency, but higher direct energy requirements. Comparison with the land use savings from reduced consumer waste, including over-consumption, suggests greater benefits could be achieved from alternative dietary transformations considered. We conclude that although a diet with lower rates of animal product consumption is likely to create the greatest reduction in agricultural land, a mix of smaller changes in consumer behaviour, such as replacing beef with chicken, reducing food waste and potentially introducing insects more commonly into diets, would also achieve land savings and a more sustainable food system.
Article
Full-text available
We assess progress toward the protection of 50% of the terrestrial biosphere to address the species-extinction crisis and conserve a global ecological heritage for future generations. Using a map of Earth's 846 terrestrial ecoregions, we show that 98 ecoregions (12%) exceed Half Protected; 313 ecoregions (37%) fall short of Half Protected but have sufficient unaltered habitat remaining to reach the target; and 207 ecoregions (24%) are in peril, where an average of only 4% of natural habitat remains. We propose a Global Deal for Nature—a companion to the Paris Climate Deal—to promote increased habitat protection and restoration, national-and ecoregion-scale conservation strategies, and the empowerment of indigenous peoples to protect their sovereign lands. The goal of such an accord would be to protect half the terrestrial realm by 2050 to halt the extinction crisis while sustaining human livelihoods.
Article
Full-text available
With a growing number of prospective cohort studies, an updated dose–response meta-analysis of milk and dairy products with all-cause mortality, coronary heart disease (CHD) or cardiovascular disease (CVD) have been conducted. PubMed, Embase and Scopus were searched for articles published up to September 2016. Random-effect meta-analyses with summarised dose–response data were performed for total (high-fat/low-fat) dairy, milk, fermented dairy, cheese and yogurt. Non-linear associations were investigated using the spine models and heterogeneity by subgroup analyses. A total of 29 cohort studies were available for meta-analysis, with 938,465 participants and 93,158 mortality, 28,419 CHD and 25,416 CVD cases. No associations were found for total (high-fat/low-fat) dairy, and milk with the health outcomes of mortality, CHD or CVD. Inverse associations were found between total fermented dairy (included sour milk products, cheese or yogurt; per 20 g/day) with mortality (RR 0.98, 95% CI 0.97–0.99; I² = 94.4%) and CVD risk (RR 0.98, 95% CI 0.97–0.99; I² = 87.5%). Further analyses of individual fermented dairy of cheese and yogurt showed cheese to have a 2% lower risk of CVD (RR 0.98, 95% CI 0.95–1.00; I² = 82.6%) per 10 g/day, but not yogurt. All of these marginally inverse associations of totally fermented dairy and cheese were attenuated in sensitivity analyses by removing one large Swedish study. This meta-analysis combining data from 29 prospective cohort studies demonstrated neutral associations between dairy products and cardiovascular and all-cause mortality. For future studies it is important to investigate in more detail how dairy products can be replaced by other foods. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s10654-017-0243-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Article
Full-text available
Background Information about the global structure of agriculture and nutrient production and its diversity is essential to improve present understanding of national food production patterns, agricultural livelihoods, and food chains, and their linkages to land use and their associated ecosystems services. Here we provide a plausible breakdown of global agricultural and nutrient production by farm size, and also study the associations between farm size, agricultural diversity, and nutrient production. This analysis is crucial to design interventions that might be appropriately targeted to promote healthy diets and ecosystems in the face of population growth, urbanisation, and climate change. Methods We used existing spatially-explicit global datasets to estimate the production levels of 41 major crops, seven livestock, and 14 aquaculture and fish products. From overall production estimates, we estimated the production of vitamin A, vitamin B12, folate, iron, zinc, calcium, calories, and protein. We also estimated the relative contribution of farms of different sizes to the production of different agricultural commodities and associated nutrients, as well as how the diversity of food production based on the number of different products grown per geographic pixel and distribution of products within this pixel (Shannon diversity index [H]) changes with different farm sizes. Findings Globally, small and medium farms (≤50 ha) produce 51–77% of nearly all commodities and nutrients examined here. However, important regional differences exist. Large farms (>50 ha) dominate production in North America, South America, and Australia and New Zealand. In these regions, large farms contribute between 75% and 100% of all cereal, livestock, and fruit production, and the pattern is similar for other commodity groups. By contrast, small farms (≤20 ha) produce more than 75% of most food commodities in sub-Saharan Africa, southeast Asia, south Asia, and China. In Europe, west Asia and north Africa, and central America, medium-size farms (20–50 ha) also contribute substantially to the production of most food commodities. Very small farms (≤2 ha) are important and have local significance in sub-Saharan Africa, southeast Asia, and south Asia, where they contribute to about 30% of most food commodities. The majority of vegetables (81%), roots and tubers (72%), pulses (67%), fruits (66%), fish and livestock products (60%), and cereals (56%) are produced in diverse landscapes (H>1·5). Similarly, the majority of global micronutrients (53–81%) and protein (57%) are also produced in more diverse agricultural landscapes (H>1·5). By contrast, the majority of sugar (73%) and oil crops (57%) are produced in less diverse ones (H≤1·5), which also account for the majority of global calorie production (56%). The diversity of agricultural and nutrient production diminishes as farm size increases. However, areas of the world with higher agricultural diversity produce more nutrients, irrespective of farm size. Interpretation Our results show that farm size and diversity of agricultural production vary substantially across regions and are key structural determinants of food and nutrient production that need to be considered in plans to meet social, economic, and environmental targets. At the global level, both small and large farms have key roles in food and nutrition security. Efforts to maintain production diversity as farm sizes increase seem to be necessary to maintain the production of diverse nutrients and viable, multifunctional, sustainable landscapes. Funding Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, CGIAR Research Programs on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security and on Agriculture for Nutrition and Health funded by the CGIAR Fund Council, Daniel and Nina Carasso Foundation, European Union, International Fund for Agricultural Development, Australian Research Council, National Science Foundation, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, and Joint Programming Initiative on Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change—Belmont Forum.
Article
Full-text available
Background Information about the global structure of agriculture and nutrient production and its diversity is essential to improve present understanding of national food production patterns, agricultural livelihoods, and food chains, and their linkages to land use and their associated ecosystems services. Here we provide a plausible breakdown of global agricultural and nutrient production by farm size, and also study the associations between farm size, agricultural diversity, and nutrient production. This analysis is crucial to design interventions that might be appropriately targeted to promote healthy diets and ecosystems in the face of population growth, urbanisation, and climate change.