What is the Planetary Health Diet?
The Planetary Health Diet is the result of two years of work by the EAT Lancet International Commission, an association of 37 leading scientists from 16 countries. The members of the commission represent disciplines such as health, sustainability, economics, politics and agriculture. The researchers pursued the question: “Can we healthily feed a future population of 10 billion people, without destroying our planet?” The result is the planetary health diet. Their primary goal is to pave the way for a sustainable food system that provides healthy food for a growing world population.
According to a study published in The Lancet, one in five dies from an unhealthy diet. He is responsible for more deaths from unsafe sex, alcohol, drugs and tobacco combined. But what people eat affects not only their health, but the planet as well. Due to the way our food is produced, we generate large amounts of greenhouse gases. Food production is therefore also one of the major factors that accelerate environmental degradation and the consumption of resources.
If implemented successfully, the diet could prevent an estimated 11 million premature deaths annually by minimizing the harmful effects of climate change, species loss and deforestation, according to the commission.
The food plan of the planetary health diet
The developed menu reflects a “flexible” diet that is heavily plant-based and only allows animal products in moderation. It can be adapted by anyone, anywhere in the world, regardless of their diet, individual preferences and cultural traditions. Whether you are flexible, pescetarian, vegetarian or vegan. The Planetary Health Diet provides recommendations and guidelines on how much to eat from each food group, with maximum levels of animal protein in particular.
For example, half of the plate should consist of fruits and vegetables, the other half of whole grains, legumes, unsaturated fatty acids and moderate amounts of animal products. Refined grains, highly processed foods, and added sugars should also be consumed in limited quantities. The nutritional plan is based on a caloric intake of 2,500 calories per day.
Planetary Health Diet Guidelines
The recommended daily amount in grams (in brackets: possible ranges):
- Whole grains: 232 g
- Starchy vegetables (potatoes, cassava): 50 g (0-100 g)
- Vegetables: 300g (200-600g)
- Fruit: 200 g (100-300 g)
2. protein sources
- Beef, lamb or pork: 14 g (0-28 g)
- Poultry: 29 g (0-58 g)
- Eggs: 13 g (0-25 g)
- Fish: 28 g (0-100 g)
- Legumes: 75 g (0-100 g)
- Walnuts: 50 g (0-75 g)
- Dairy products (whole milk or products derived from this quantity): 250 g (0-500 g)
- Unsaturated fats (olive, canola, sunflower, soy, peanut, grape seed): 40g (20-80g)
- Saturated fat (palm oil, lard, tallow): 11.8 g (0-11.8 g)
4. Added sugar
- All sweeteners: 31g (0-31g)