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The Planetary Health Diet Help Save the World



  • The diet drastically reduces red meat consumption and increases the amount of fruit, legume and whole grain intake.
  • Researchers say estimated 11 million people could be saved from premature deaths linked to unhealthy diets.

    Most diets promise to help you lose weight fast, but a new diet offers bolder claims. Researchers have developed the "planetary health diet" to make the world's population healthier, eliminate hunger, and save the planet.

    An estimated 10 billion people will live on our planet by 2050. In a report published in The Lancet researchers warn that this large population, combined with current dietary trends and food production, wants only drive increase in diseases, world hunger and greenhouse gas emissions. But they say "we can provide win-win diets to everyone by 2050 and beyond."

    If you already follow a plant-based diet, the proposed plan may not be so bad. However, if you're a regular steak eater, you'll have to make some pretty drastic changes.

    Here's what the planetary health diet entails:

    On this plan, you'll consume mostly fruits, vegetables and legumes, while cutting meat and sugar. In particular, red meat is significantly reduced. In fact, scientists estimate that North American populations eat six times more than the amount proposed in the planetary health diet.

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<h4 class= Here's what a typical day would look like,
    • Wheat, corn and rice products – 232 grams [19659002] Starchy vegetables – 50 grams
    • All other veggies, like leafy greens and peppers – 300 grams
    • Fruit – 200 grams
    • Dairy – 250 grams
    • Beef, lamb, and pork – 14 grams (For comparison, quarter-pound burger is 113 grams)
    • Poultry – 29 grams
    • Eggs – 13 grams (a large egg is about 50 grams)
    • Fish – 28 grams Soy foods – 25 grams
    • Nuts – 50 grams
    • Sugar – 30 grams
    • Soy foods – 25 grams
    • Soy foods – 25 grams
    • Nuts – 50 grams
    • Sugar – 30 grams [19659002] Oils – 50 grams

      As the daily portions of meat are small, it's safe to say you'll probably save up the recommended allotment for a weekly burger. Instead, you'll be able to make a few cups of whole wheat bread, half a cup of oatmeal, and half a cup of rice each day.

       whole grains staple on planetary health diet

      Getty Images fcafotodigital

      Well, researchers say this plan will help us live longer, protect the planet, and ensure there's enough food to feed everyone. According to study co-author Johan Rockström at the Stockholm Resilience Center in Sweden, the measures are drastic-but-necessary.

      "Humanity now poses a threat to the stability of the planet," he told The Guardian . "[This requires] nothing less than a new global agricultural revolution."

      And following this diet will help you lead a longer, healthier life, according to the report.

      "We estimated that the reference diet could avoid about 11.1 million deaths per year in 2030 and reduce premature mortality by 19 percent," the authors write. They believe that it would decrease the intake and increase the amount of whole grain, nut, vegetable, and fruit consumption would decrease illnesses like coronary heart disease, stroke and type 2 diabetes.

      There is no debate that the diet is just ready.

       Gary Images

      Claudia Totir

      Alan Dangour, professor of food and nutrition at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, told CNN the plan "is quite a shock." Dangour was not a part of the study, and explained the diet is not easy to implement since. Plus, there's the matter of getting them to change their diets-which is not easy.

      But Marco Springmann of Oxford University, who was a part of the study, thinks sacrificing your daily burger is worth it.

      "The planetary health diet is based on really hard epidemiological evidence, where it explores the great cohorts of people for decades," he explains The Guardian .

      Although this diet is likely to stir up mixed opinions, there's no denying that everyone could benefit from eating their fruits and veggies.

    Melissa Matthews is the health writer at MensHealth.com and has written for Newsweek.
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