By Samantha Bandasack for DietsInReview.com
There are thousands of diets in the world designed to help individuals lose weight. Some diets go as far as depriving the body of nutrients, which seems crazy when roughly two billion people in the world have no resources for food, much less the free will to starve.
As reported by VOANews, the Food and Agriculture Organization and Bioversity International, Rome-based international organizations, have just published Sustainable Diets and Biodiversity. A sustainable diet protects human and plant health, and the book urges action to improve the quality of diets for nations and poor diets that are linked to non-transmittable disease.
Non-communicable diseases are illnesses that aren’t contagious but do infect a massive amount of people. A person’s lifestyle, genetics, or environment are known to cause certain illnesses that aren’t contagious. Examples of non-communicable diseases are diabetes, cancers, respiratory health problems, osteoporosis, heart disease, cataracts, kidney disease, and Alzheimer’s disease. Following a sustainable diet can help maintain a healthy life and fight non-transmissible diseases. This is more than just filling the stomachs of those who are starving. According to Bruce Cogill, program leader for nutrition and marketing diversity at Bioversity International, “What we’re doing in pointing out the issue of quality is that we don’t want to see a world where just calories are the focus of hunger programs. What the book does is look at diets from the point of view of meeting nutrient requirements.”
For a diet to be sustainable it must meet a standard, which Cogill defines as considering the environmental cost of a diet. Sustainable diets aren’t identical for every country because of barriers that permit people having access to the same types of food. Animal source is basically any type of animal familiar to citizens of a particular geographical region. For example, Americans animal source from cows, chickens, and pigs. Other countries animal source from lamb, fish, or boar.
Sustainable Diets and Biodiversity does not target developing nations’ diets, but the diet can be applied to cities of developed countries. Developed nations have the highest level of obesity rates. Obesity causes a host of health problems like heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Increasing rates of globalization and foreign direct investment are raising income levels of developing countries. Citizens of developing nations can afford to buy food rich in fat and sugar, which are factors of an unhealthy diet.
There is no doubt something must be done to help end global starvation, obesity rates, and illnesses. Can a sustainable diet be the answer to the problems?