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Planetary health diet

planetary health

The EAT-Lancet Commission on Food, Planet, Health, was launched in Oslo in January 2019 and has subsequently been introduced in a series of events around the world[1].

EAT (a non-profit startup dedicated to transforming the global food system through sound science, impatient disruption and novel partnerships) gathered 37 of the world’s foremost experts, led by Prof. Johan Rockström (Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and Stockholm Resilience Center) and Prof. Walter Willett (Harvard University), who, for the first time ever, have proposed scientific targets for both a healthy diet and a sustainable food system.

The Commission concludes that the global adoption of healthy diets from sustainable food systems would safeguard our planet and improve the health of billions. Food production, consumption and wastage all heavily shape the health of both people and planet. It finds that feeding 10bn people a healthy diet within safe planetary boundaries for food production by 2050 is both possible and necessary. It also demonstrates that the universal adoption of a planetary health diet would help avoid severe environmental degradation and prevent approximately 11m human deaths annually.

The Commission calls for widespread multi-sector, multi-level action including: a substantial global shift toward healthy dietary patterns; large reductions in food loss and waste; and major improvements in food production practices. The data are described as both sufficient and strong enough to warrant immediate action. Food is identified as a defining issue of the 21st century.

Prof. Walter Willett explains that to achieve a transformation to healthy diets by 2050, global consumption of fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes will have to double, and consumption of foods, such as red meat and sugar, will have to be reduced by more than 50%. A diet rich in plant based foods and with fewer animal source foods confers both improved health and environmental benefits.



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