If Americans consumed less meat, we'd be less obese and generally healthier. These improvements would lead us to economic savings from healthcare costs, says a new study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. But the study's unique angle has more to do with its research on the impacts of a vegetarian based on climate change. "The economic value of health improvements [from eating a vegetarian diet] could be comparable with, and possibly larger than, the value of the avoided damage from climate change," as Reuters noted about the study below. When it comes to climate change, following the current national dietary recommendations would cut food-related greenhouse gas emissions by 29 percent, whereas adopting vegetarian diet would cut them by 63 percent. Healthcare professionals have more reason than ever to recommend eating our vegetables. Find out more how to talk about climate change effectively, read our report, Let's Talk Climate.
By Reuters I March 23, 2016
By eating less meat and more fruit and vegetables, the world could avoid several million deaths per year by 2050, cut planet-warming emissions substantially, and save billions of dollars annually in healthcare costs and climate damage, researchers said.
A new study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, is the first to estimate both the health and climate change impacts of a global move towards a more plant-based diet, they said.
Unbalanced diets are responsible for the greatest health burden around the world, and our food system produces more than a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions, said lead author Marco Springmann of the Oxford Martin Programme on the Future of Food.
"What we eat greatly influences our personal health and the global environment," he said.
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