Choosing foods to protect the planet
and Type 2 diabetes in this country.
Nearly all my carbohydrates come from beans, whole-grain breads and milk, and I’m gradually decreasing consumption of my favorite treat: low-fat ice cream.
Suggestions about dietary fats mimic those you’ve been hearing for years: stick with unsaturated vegetable oils like olive, canola, soybean and corn oils, but steer clear of palm oil, which is high in saturated fats and its production is responsible for massive destruction of tropical rainforests needed to protect both the earth’s climate and diversity of wildlife.
Coconut oil is currently enjoying a moment in dietary fame; even though it is a highly saturated fat, the particular type of fat in coconut oil gives a greater-than-usual boost to blood levels of HDL cholesterol, which is considered heart-protective.
Willett suggests limiting it to occasional use, perhaps for Thai cooking or (do we dare?) making a pie crust or other baked goods that call for a solid fat.
The EAT-Lancet Commission emphasized that its advice to eat more plant-based foods and fewer foods from animals is “not a question of all or nothing, but rather small changes for a large and positive impact.” It pointed out that “foods sourced from animals, especially red meat, have relatively high environmental footprints per serving compared to other food groups,” which Willett called “unsustainable.”
Even if environmental issues are not high on your list of concerns, health should be.
As the commission concluded, “Today, over two billion adults are overweight and obese, and diet-related noncommunicable diseases including diabetes, cancer and heart diseases are among the leading causes of global deaths,” risks now being exported worldwide.
Considered the ef fects of what you eat on the planet, and make changes that will protect not only the Earth but also your health and the well-being of generations to come.