research paper healthy eating and global warming

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Research paper healthy eating and global warming example of a research abstract paper

Research paper healthy eating and global warming

In the literature, there is much focus on the effects of climate change on food security defined as access to sufficient, safe, nutritious food to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle in the developing world [World Health Organization WHO ]. In these developing areas, there is good evidence that climate change will compound existing and predicted food insecurity and undernutrition Cohen et al. However, in developed countries, food shortages are uncommon and shortage of energy is not a major problem, although micronutrient deficiencies and overnutrition are prevalent.

The nutritional quality and safety of food are the primary concerns related to food in these areas. Climate change is likely to have a number of consequences for food security in developed countries, and these effects are enacted through multiple pathways, as summarized in Figure 1.

Anthropogenic GHG emissions and natural climate forcings other mechanisms that lead to climate variability such as stratospheric volcanic aerosols Hegerl et al. The agrifood industry will respond to a changing climate adaptation and will be affected by initiatives to modify farming and food systems to reduce GHG emissions associated with the food chain mitigation Royal Society They may also become involved in further initiatives to reduce GHG emissions through the production of biofuels Banse All these will lead to changes in the types of food that individuals consume, their nutritional content and safety.

Climate change will also directly influence food choice. Finally, as mitigation against climate change, there may be increased uptake of low GHG diets preferentially consuming food whose production, processing, storage and transportation releases lower GHG emissions. Any changes to food choice or the conditions under which food is produced may have consequences for the nutritional composition of diets and food safety, hence important impacts on health Royal Society Main pathways through which climate change affects food security in developed countries adapted from McMichael et al.

Natural climate forcings are nonanthropogenic mechanisms that affect climate, such as stratospheric volcanic aerosols. The causes and main impacts of climate change are shown on the left. GHG, greenhouse gases. To investigate the potential impacts of anthropogenic climate change upon food security, it is important to recognize that food is a global commodity. Food consumed in one part of the world may be produced thousands of kilometers away.

Countries also buy food on an international market, so changes in food production in one part of the world may affect the price of food produced in other parts of the world. This review aimed to investigate the possible impact that anthropogenic climate change may have on nutrition and food safety and on the subsequent consequences for health in developed countries. The existing literature includes much research on climate change and agriculture but less on other components such as climate change and nutrition.

We focused specifically on the effects of climate change upon food in developed countries using the United Kingdom as a case study. We first consider how climate change may affect the nutritional composition and safety of food that individuals consume. We then consider the ability of developed countries to adapt to climate change, specifically looking at the complex policies and structures e.

This review was not a formal systematic review due to the breadth of the topic. Instead, we began by conducting interviews with eight of the authors G. The aim of these interviews was to ascertain how climate change might interact with food and then to identify the main research projects and key papers dealing with these issues.

This allowed us to set out the main structure of the review. The results of the interviews were used to begin to identify the main issues to be explored, in conjunction with a broad-based literature review using Google Initially, the search focused on reviews in the relevant areas published in the peer-reviewed and gray literature. These were then supplemented through specific searches for additional relevant primary and secondary research.

The results were summarized, with established answers and remaining questions highlighted. The first draft of the review summarizing the work was sent to the eight experts for comments. These comments were incorporated into the review and further searching of the literature conducted if required. Finally, the review was evaluated by experts from the U. Projections for this region suggest that climate change will result in warming of 2. Northern and eastern Europe are projected to become wetter, while the Mediterranean is expected to become drier.

Projections about extreme events are highly uncertain, but heat waves are expected to be more intense, frequent, and longer lasting, whereas extreme precipitation events will increase in northern and western Europe EEA Annual precipitation is not expected to change much overall, but patterns of precipitation are estimated to result in drier summers and wetter winters. Extreme precipitation and also heat events will become more common.

Food prices and availability. Several studies have examined the likely impact of climate change on world food prices, mostly of grain. As reviewed by Easterling et al. However, many assessments do not consider likely increases in the frequency of extreme weather events predicted under climate change [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC ]. When these assessments are considered, Easterling et al. One example of the impact of current climate variability occurred in when extreme weather in many parts of the world, particularly the Murray—Darling Basin in Australia, led to reductions in world cereal production.

These yield reductions were partly to blame for rising global food prices Piesse and Thirtle Although extreme weather events have the potential to lead to localized food shortages, in the European heat wave the global food trade helped to avert regional food availability issues Battisti and Naylor One mitigation measure to combat climate change is increased use of biofuels, which, by displacing food crops from agricultural land, could lead to increased food prices.

Biofuels have been implicated as one cause of the rise in global food prices Lock et al. The production of biofuels in many countries is driven by policy measures such as tax exemptions, investment subsidies, and obligatory blending of biofuels with mineral fuels Banse et al. Therefore, the future impact of biofuels will depend heavily upon how these policy measures are applied.

Furthermore, technological changes, such as the development of second generation biofuels, that may have lower impacts upon existing agriculture, will also play a key role. If rises in food prices occur, then individuals may shift to lower cost food items, which in turn, may have health consequences. During the recent increases in food prices, there is evidence from Scotland that consumers shifted from more expensive to cheaper brands of food, and away from organic produce Rural and Environment Analytical Services Shifts from more expensive brands of food to cheaper ones may have few or may even have positive nutritional effects.

For example, some cheaper brands of food have lower sodium and fat contents Cooper and Nelson Movements away from organic produce are expected to have few, if any, nutritional consequences Dangour et al. However, other shifts may be of more concern as healthier food is often more expensive than less healthy food e.

Of particular concern are energy-dense foods usually more processed food with high-sugar and high-fat contents , which are often cheaper than their less energy-dense counterparts. Energy-dense foods are also less affected by increases in the costs of agricultural commodities because processing and marketing are major components of their cost [Economic and Social Research Council ESRC ].

Consequently, Lock et al. Therefore, these rises in food prices associated with climate change may reduce the nutritional quality of dietary intakes and lower the nutritional status of some groups. Rising prices could also increase the risk of obesity particularly among children, young adults, smokers, lower-income groups, and frail older people who already have more marginal nutritional status [Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition SACN ] and are more likely to be affected by rising prices.

Such price rises raise equity concerns and are likely to exacerbate health inequalities Lock et al. Changes in food consumption because of increasing costs driven by climate change may also affect food safety as different foods carry varying risks of foodborne illness Adak et al. For example, as the cost of food increases, consumers may shift from more expensive fresh poultry to frozen poultry, which may increase the likelihood of consuming chicken contaminated with Salmonella , but reduce the likelihood of consuming chicken contaminated with Campylobacter FSA a.

In the absence of detailed information on likely shifts in purchasing and diet, it is difficult to predict changes in food safety or nutrition. Changing production methods. With climate change, food will be produced under different climatic conditions in altered ecosystems, which will alter agricultural conditions and be compounded by adaptations to such change.

Conditions may be further altered through initiatives from the food industry to mitigate against climate change. GHG-mitigation initiatives might include introducing high-sugar grasses into the diet of cows, which reduces methane emissions [Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Defra b], or altering the times of year when animal manures are spread onto land to reduce emissions of nitrous oxide a GHG; Agricultural Land Advisory Service ADAS These changes could have implications for nutritional quality and food safety.

Climate change may alter the seasonal patterns and abundance of pests and diseases, which may affect pesticide use, including herbicides and fungicides Boxall et al. Responses will differ between crops and between geographical locations. For example, Chen and McCarl estimated that pesticide use in the United States would increase under climate change overall. Elevated temperatures may also lead to the emergence and re-emergence of pathogens, vectors, or hosts Harrus and Baneth , resulting in greater use of biocides and veterinary medicines in livestock management Kemper This could increase the prevalence of antibiotic-resistant pathogens in animal and human populations [Food and Agriculture Organization FAO ].

Climate change could affect existing pathogens or lead to the emergence of new pathogens in food Tirado et al. Previous research has demonstrated that Salmonella infections in humans are positively associated with temperature Kovats et al. This is biologically plausible because Salmonella bacteria will reproduce in food that is kept at ambient temperature.

Therefore, under a warmer climate, elevated cases of salmonellosis are likely. However, for many other pathogens, although associations between human cases and weather exist e. The pathogens most likely to be affected by climate change are those with low-infective doses e. Other pathogens likely to be affected are those with significant persistence in the environment e. Pathogens with good stress tolerance responses to temperature and pH e.

Agricultural adaptation to climate change may involve increased use of irrigation water. The use of wastewater for irrigation would reduce water extraction but could increase pathogen risks for consumers [World Health Organization WHO ]. For example, the Salmonella serotype Saintpaul outbreak in the United States, in which 1, people were allegedly infected, was linked to produce irrigated with wastewater in Mexico Jungk et al.

Elevated use of irrigation could also introduce chemicals into the food chain as such water may be contaminated with chemicals, such as pesticide residues Boxall et al. Agricultural adaptation to and mitigation against climate change will lead to the development of new crops and livestock species bred or engineered to survive in different climatic conditions or emit less GHGs.

It will be important to monitor these new commodities to ensure that nutritional quality is maintained. For example, in the United Kingdom, a study using data from a long-term wheat-farming experiment found that since the mids the goal of increased food production was achieved at the expense of lower levels of zinc, iron, copper and magnesium in wheat Fan et al. Climate change may affect the transport of pathogens and chemicals into food.

Examples of transfer mechanisms that may increase under climate change include aerial inputs of volatile and dust-associated contamination, flooding, and increased bioavailability of heavy metals due to changing environments and soil properties Boxall et al. Climate change may alter the nature of the material being transported, as well as increasing the rates of transport.

For example, after hurricanes Katrina and Rita, the U. Geological Survey found evidence that some mobilized flood sediments were derived from old, highly contaminated urban soils Plumlee et al. Climate change can affect food during its journey from the farm to consumer, and elevated temperatures may lead to increased bacterial replication e. Mycotoxins, an important public health concern, are formed through complex interactions between fungi and crops and are affected by weather and soil Russell et al.

A recent review indicated increasing problems of mycotoxins in parts of temperate Europe and the United States as climate change—associated temperature rises approach the optimal level for production of aflatoxins—one of the most important mycotoxins from a public health point of view. In other countries such as Australia, temperatures may rise to levels high enough to reduce fungal growth and mycotoxin production Russell et al. Shifts to low-GHG diets.

Climate change may increase the consumption of lower GHG diets as a mitigation strategy. Fifty percent of European food-associated GHG emissions are due to meat and dairy consumption. These figures incorporate emissions from food production, processing, and distribution Barrett et al.

Analysis of individual foods indicates that the consumption of meat and dairy foods, especially beef, lamb, pork, and cheese result in 3—13 times more GHG emissions than do vegetables and pulses e. Shifts to low-GHG diets would reduce meat and dairy consumption, resulting in public health benefits and risks. Although a recent U. Such reductions in red meat consumption also may have food safety implications.

Substituting meat with poultry or seafood might increase foodborne illnesses, whereas replacement with pulses and vegetables would reduce them Adak et al. A GHG-mitigation strategy that led to reduced consumption of sugary foods and drinks may be beneficial to oral health, but reduced consumption of tomatoes, peppers, and salads may be less beneficial.

The overall nutritional and food safety implications of such shifts are difficult to judge without information on what these products would be replaced with. Consuming food that is in season tends to lower GHG emissions. This is because out-of-season food production has greater agricultural inputs, such as the use of heated greenhouses, and hence GHG emissions Garnett If low-GHG diets lead to reduced consumption of nonseasonal produce, this could adversely affect fruit and vegetable consumption in the winter and spring when local availability is limited in temperate countries.

Ensuring adequate year-round consumption of a variety of fruit and vegetables is important for public health WHO and has been one of the major beneficial changes in the diets of individuals over the past 40 years Foster and Lunn Transport of food from other parts of the world where it is in season would be one solution to this problem, as would be storing seasonally produced food for other times of the year.

These two options may be similar in terms of GHG emissions. One study suggested little difference in GHG emissions between consuming European-grown apples in the spring harvested in the autumn and stored through the winter and consuming imported apples from New Zealand harvested in the European spring and shipped directly to Europe Blanke and Burdick Consuming food that has traveled less distance i.

Therefore, a locally sourced diet is not necessarily a low-GHG diet. The exception, where transport is a large proportion of GHG emissions, is air-freighted food. In the United Kingdom, although only 1. If individuals change to a locally sourced diet to mitigate against climate change, then they are likely to find it difficult to achieve a year-round supply of fresh fruit and vegetables.

Consuming food from a small geographical area may also increase the risk of nutrient deficiencies or toxic effects reflecting the chemical characteristics of local soils Oliver For example, one reason for the reduction of goiter due to iodine deficiency in the United Kingdom during the late s was that people were consuming food from a larger geographical area Saikat et al.

Greater quantities of food grown on allotments a small portion of usually public land made available for low-cost rental to allow individual food cultivation could be of concern because of their often urban nature and greater risk of contaminated soil from earlier industrial use or atmospheric deposition Papritz and Reichard However, a recent U. Impacts on food sourcing and consumption. Climate change is expected to lead to shifting food belts, which implies that food consumed in the future will be sourced from different parts of the world Easterling et al.

The source of food may affect its micronutrient and macronutrient composition because of different varieties grown, varying soils and growing conditions, differing methods of harvesting, processing, and storing methods. The U. There is evidence that daily selenium intakes in the United Kingdom are below recommended levels Finley In addition, climate change—induced shifts in where food is produced will alter food safety risks.

For example, food from the tropics carries an elevated risk of mycotoxin exposure, and the country of origin may affect microbial risks because of varying policies on the use of wastewater for irrigation Drechsel et al. Climate affects human behavior, and so in an altered climate, individuals may choose to consume different foods. This could have important consequences for nutrition and food safety.

For example, U. Few studies have examined how weather affects food consumption, making it difficult to estimate the impact of climate change on diets. Adaptation to climate change. The previous section highlights mechanisms through which climate change could affect the nutritional composition of diets and the safety of food.

Whether these changes occur will depend upon local policies and structures to regulate food production, monitor the quality and safety of food, and record and respond to any nutritional or safety issues that arise. Such structures provide a country with the capacity to adapt to climate change. In the next section, we provide an overview of these structures in developed countries using the United Kingdom as a case study.

We also discuss how these structures may be enhanced to facilitate adaptation to climate change. Nutritional adaptation. If climate change leads to changes in the nutritional composition of individual diets, then the overall effects will depend upon the ability of society to adapt to these changes. Regular monitoring of the nutritional composition of staples such as grain and potatoes, meat, fruits, and vegetables does not occur in the United Kingdom, but food intake and the nutritional status of the population is monitored through the National Diet and Nutrition Survey Ashwell et al.

Although this survey exemplifies good practice in nutritional assessment of a population, it has limitations, and good biomarkers of nutritional status for more vitamins and minerals are urgently needed Fairweather-Tait As some effects of climate change upon nutrition may be localized or only affect specific subgroups of the population, there is a need for more targeted monitoring of vulnerable populations such as low-income individuals who are most likely to be affected by rises in food price, those already at nutritional risk e.

If climate change alters the nutritional composition of individual diets, and if these changes are identified, then the overall effect will depend upon local policy responses. One strategy to address changing nutritional statuses of the population would be the fortification of foods within agriculture biofortification or during food processing.

For example, white flour is fortified with a variety of minerals and vitamins in the United Kingdom. In addition to fortification, governments may encourage manufacturers to alter the constituents of their food products in response to health concerns. However, such initiatives can face significant opposition from industry Pendrous Another way to address the issues of climate change—related nutritional status is through altering food intakes.

However, this is challenging, as multiple factors affect food choice Dowler et al. Simple interventions such as public education campaigns have limited success, especially when they are in direct competition with the marketing of highly processed and flavored foods ESRC Targeted interventions such as the Buywell project described in ESRC have had better success through use of targeted direct-mail price promotions of healthier products in combination with messages promoting the benefits of dietary change.

Framework of the determinants of food choice in the United Kingdom. Adapted from Dowler et al. Food safety adaptation. Therefore, if climate change led to increases above the established levels for food contaminants, such food would not be permitted to enter the human food chain. Some food retailers ensure that their suppliers adhere to limits lower than the regulatory limits Asfaw et al. The processes permitted within agriculture and food processing are also strictly controlled to ensure food safety.

Standards and regulations have the capacity to prevent food and safety issues resulting from climate change. To ensure the success of these regulations, food monitoring is required. For example, in the United Kingdom regular food surveys are undertaken by the FSA , and additional surveys are undertaken by other organizations e.

In the case of Campylobacter levels in poultry, surveys have been used as a basis on which voluntary targets have been established with industry to reduce levels in food further FSA b. As food surveys can only test a small proportion of foods because of logistical and budgetary constraints , localized food safety issues are unlikely to be uncovered by national food surveys.

This limitation highlights the need for risk assessment along the food chain to identify areas undergoing significant environmental change or rapid agricultural adaptations. Food from such areas would be a target for enhanced monitoring. Developed countries such as the United Kingdom have disease surveillance structures in place to monitor human illnesses that may result from food contamination.

If an outbreak is detected, action is then taken to identify and control the source. In addition, the HPA is involved in monitoring long-term trends in infections. This information has been used to support measures to protect public health. For example, in the United Kingdom the official report on the Stanley Royd outbreak of Salmonella typhimurium in , which resulted in 19 deaths Hugill , led to food safety improvements. If foodborne outbreaks are detected or abnormalities identified through food monitoring, then food chain traceability is essential to identify the source of contamination.

Climate change may alter the status quo and thus render current regulation and monitoring of the food chain inadequate and highlights the need for emerging risk identification systems Marvin et al. Such techniques include horizon scanning, a method that looks at foodborne diseases emerging in other parts of the world or diseases emerging in animals to predict future threats to humans.

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RESUME MARKETING EXECUTIVE

Figure 1. Percentage contribution of food categories to total intake of selected nutrients protein, iron, calcium, and vitamin B 12 in observed and optimized diet in the male adult population. Figure 2. Percentage contribution of food categories to total intake of selected nutrients protein, iron, calcium, and vitamin B 12 in observed and optimized diet in the female adult population.

The present study shows how nutrient-based recommendations proposed by national DRI 4 can be transformed into a practical dietary advice among the Italian adult population, using a linear programming optimization model and the national dietary intake data. To our knowledge, this is the first exercise of applying a mathematical model for diet optimization, using national food consumption data linked to a country-specific GHGE database.

In order to provide a healthy and acceptable diet, the optimization, besides minimizing the GHGEs, considers various kinds of constraints: nutrient coverage, acceptability, and health promotion. Nutritional requirements are based on country-specific recommendations 4 from which were derived adequate range values for energy and nutrients intake.

Acceptability constraints on food quantities were established to ensure that the optimized diet remained within the range of diet consumed by the Italian population, and were introduced by limiting the food subcategories consumption within the 5th and 90th percentiles of the observed population data.

Health constraints led to a complete removal processed meat and alcohol from the diet since they are classified as carcinogen in humans according to IARC 24 , The issue of iron intake in optimized diet for females requires a specific consideration. At the first stage of application of linear programming optimization to female population data, no solution was found.

Iron requirement in female compared with usual intake is a critical issue. Italian female diet is low in terms of iron intake 9 , and in some groups of population, there is evidence of moderate clinical deficiencies The reason for not obtaining a diet model compatible with iron recommendation in females is related to the partial incompatibility between this specific nutritional constraint and the more general health constraint.

If the red meat constraint had been removed, a higher iron intake would have been reached in females. The present study shows that an acceptable diet, nutritionally adequate, and health promoting, is also compatible with a positive mitigation of climate impact. The climate impact of the optimized diet resulted, indeed, to be lower than that of mean Italian dietary intake, that is, 1.

Moreover, the optimized diet required a shift from meat and high-fat and sweet food toward fruit and vegetables as well as starchy food. Optimizing a diet according to the healthy constraints determines a reduction of meat consumption that in some cases e. However, our data demonstrated that it is possible to optimize a diet including limited quantity of red meat This is possible because of the increment in the intake of pulses, vegetables, and cereals that are important food sources of iron, as observed by Sette et al.

As previously reported, using an iron recommendation 4 This was a direct effect of the assumption that optimized diet should be acceptable, meaning not too different from the assessed habits. Italian adult females have a very low intake of iron Table 2 , well below the recommendation, so that calculation leading to an important increase in iron intake is not compatible with the model.

In the optimized diet, spices and herbs resulted in the 90th percentile in both males and females. This result represents a further convergence between requirements to achieve climate change mitigation and health outcome. In fact, several food-based dietary guidelines, including the Italians ones, pointed out the importance of replacing salt with spices and herbs as a strategy to reduce the incidence of high blood pressure and related diseases. In parallel, it is recommended to vary choices within spices and herbs in order to limit exposure to toxic components, e.

This study provides a further contribution to previously similar researches, as it fosters a healthy diet with low GHGE without the total elimination of meat and dairy foods from the diet. On the other hand, Italian habits are preserved as imposed by the acceptability constraints.

In fact, the optimized diet proposes many basic foods that are usually included in the meal of the Italian population pasta, potatoes, vegetables, nuts, milk, and yogurt. In addition, this study provides an evolution of the national food consumption database including also GHGE values for individual food processing, distribution, and retailing. Emissions after the retail phase, such as transports to the household, storing, and cooking, were not included, as well as waste management.

Another possible limitation of this study may be that data collection occurred more than 10 years ago — and therefore they could not represent correctly current Italian dietary habits. This study, however, has established a valid methodology that can be used when updated GHGE values and new national food consumption data will be available.

This appears to confirm the feasibility of the optimization here carried out so the results are suitable to analyze future survey results to understand whether observed diet will converge to optimized values or not.

The present results are in line with indicators of compliance to policy goals for a sustainable and nutritionally valid food system 54 also highlighted in Europe by the Food Agenda This is important because, to some extent, the paradigm of changing food system for environmental protection is reversed considering that the first action to achieve an impact on sustainability is to follow nutrition recommendations Analysis to foreseen food systems scenarios in and also evidenced consumers to play a central role in shaping a future sustainable agri-food system 57 , These first results encourage research in extending optimization incorporating further aspects in a multidisciplinary concept of diet sustainability 59 , 60 and possibly food safety 61 in a worldwide context 62 linking nutrition and food system 63 in benchmarking Italian dietary patterns 27 , Diet optimization, using linear programming model, can translate nutrient-based recommendations into acceptable dietary patterns for Italian adult population determining moreover a positive mitigation of climate impact.

The most important results of this study are the alignment of healthy dietary patterns with climate change indicators and an acceptable selection of foods within the eating habits having less environmental impact while complying with nutritional needs. In fact, evidence from this paper suggests that dietary pattern with a reduced environmental impact in terms of GHGE is compatible with a healthy and acceptable diet for the Italian population; dietary patterns that adhered to dietary guidelines as a whole, not only in part were more sustainable than the population's current mean amount of dietary pattern intake.

These results can be used as a pillar around which optimization is extended to incorporate further aspects in a multidisciplinary concept of diet sustainability in a country-specific context to consider social organizations, economic structures, and cultures. Overall, these results support the hypothesis that pursuing diet-related goals can substantially contribute to achieving SDGs.

MF was responsible for article writing. The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest. World Health Organization. World health organization advocates for a healthy diet for all: global perspective. J Res Med Sci. Institute of Medicine. Food and Nutrition Board.

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