At last, the Planetary Health Diet!
Dear Beagle Editor,
I’m hoping I can make use of your pages to bring this interesting new diet to your readers’ attention. And perhaps even promote some discussion of the issues behind it.
New Year’s is traditionally linked with resolutions, and a popular one is going on a diet. But which diet? Atkins, Paleo, High Fat, Low Carb, you name it, there’s always someone pushing a diet that they claim will transform your life. But what about a diet that will not only transform your life, but save the planet at the same time? Now that’s surely worth a look at.
Especially when we see who’s behind it. Nope, not some celebrity chef, or vapid actor. This one is the culmination of an international commission of scientists, and is published in the peer-reviewed medical journal, The Lancet. This is solid science.
The researchers make the point that the world food system is broken. Vast numbers of people in developing countries go starving or undernourished, whereas in the West, a large proportion of us have ended up overweight or obese. Both conditions are life-threatening. Further, there isn’t enough land to feed everyone on our diet, so that’s clearly not the way of the future.
Fortunately, they found it’s possible to come up with a diet that would solve all these problems, and that can be healthy, flavourful and enjoyable. Indeed, it closely resembles two diets famous for how long their adherents live for – the Okinawa diet from Japan and the Mediterranean diet.
It will take a bit of getting used to, so most of us couldn’t expect to be on top of it from tomorrow. But expect to hear a lot more about it in the months and years to come. I reckon it would do us no harm, and a lot of good to start moving in that general direction. What have you got to lose? Probably rather a lot of kilos, if you are like two thirds of adults in our region. And what do you have to gain? Better health into your old age, and the smug satisfaction that you are part of the solution, not part of the problem.
Remember the old adage. Think global, act local. This is something you can do for yourself and the planet. You’ll find a good introductory article at: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jan/16/new-plant-focused-diet-would-transform-planets-future-say-scientists Terry McGee