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

17 January 2019 - Published by Hein Braaksma
On January 16th, 37 renowned scientist and experts from sixteen countries published an article about their report in the medical journal The Lancet: Food in the Antropocene, a comprehensive analysis of the world food system with recommendations for how ten billion world inhabitants can be fed by 2050. It is a report with an optimistic message, because it is possible to feed the world healthily and sustainably in 2050. But a 'Great Food Transformation' is needed for this, a global transition to a healthy and sustainable food system. The potential of changing your diet is enormous. Not just for you, your well-being, your health, your region and the regional economy but also for meeting the challenges of climate change. Reframe is part of this transformation to a new, regional food economy. Today’s Lancet publication is an extra inspiration and support for this transformation.

Food systems have the potential to nurture human health and support environmental sustainability, however our current trajectories threaten both. The EAT–Lancet Commission addresses the need to feed a growing global population a healthy diet while also defining sustainable food systems that will minimise damage to our planet.   

The Commission quantitively describes an universal healthy reference diet, based on an increase in consumption of healthy foods (such as vegetables, fruits, whole grains, legumes, and nuts), and a decrease in consumption of unhealthy foods (such as red meat, sugar, and refined grains) that would provide major health benefits, and also increase the likelihood of attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals. This is set against the backdrop of defined scientific boundaries that would ensure a safe operating space within six Earth systems, towards sustaining a healthy planet.  

An Editorial highlights the Lancet’s focus on nutrition in 2019, linking this EAT–Lancet Commission and an upcoming Commission on the Global Syndemic of obesity, undernutrition, and climate change.

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