Showing results for: Health and nutrition policy
This paper looks at link between diets, health and climate and particularly the effects of adopting healthier diets in the US on the risk of disease, health care costs and greenhouse gas emissions.
The World Cancer Research Fund International has created the NOURISHING policy database which has now been updated and holds 390 policy actions from 125 countries, and 70 evaluations.
In international trade agreements, restrictions on goods or demands for labelling which differ from country to country can be ‘barriers to trade’, effectively restricting the free movement of goods. Trade organisations which manage such agreements, such as the World Trade Organisation (WTO), have mechanisms in place to ensure that environmental or public health measures are not in fact ‘disguised restrictions on international trade’ which aim to protect national industries. Formal processes exist in the WTO to query public health and environment regulations for their ‘trade restrictiveness’, their necessity and the possibility of using alternatives.
This paper provides an overview of dietary guidance for pulses, discussing their nutritional composition and health benefits as well as the evolution of the way in which the USDA’s dietary guidelines categorise pulses. The paper was published in a special issue on The Potential of Pulses to Meet Today’s Health Challenges: Staple Foods in the journal Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.
In this paper, a coupled agriculture and health modelling framework is used to estimate the mitigation potential and global health impacts from emissions pricing of food commodities. The analysis suggests that levying an appropriately designed GHG tax on food would be a health-promoting climate change mitigation policy in all high-income, middle income and most low-income countries. It is suggested that sparing healthy foods from taxation, selectively compensating for income losses from the tax, and channelling the subsequent revenues to health promotion could avert potential negative health impacts on vulnerable groups.
This new article published in Solutions, whose authorship includes several FCRN members, briefly outlines current food system issues. The work is based on discussions in the session ‘Sustainable nutrient management in the Anthropocene’ at the IARU Sustainability Science Congress 2014.
This paper by FCRN member Corné van Dooren and colleagues reports that higher greenhouse gas emissions tend to be generated in the production of energy dense foods and lower in nutrient dense foods, and that emissions show significant correlations with 15 nutrients, including saturated fat, animal protein and sodium. Using these finding, the authors propose a ‘Sustainable Nutrient Rich Foods’ (SNRF) index, which summarises both climate and nutritional impacts of individual foods.
While regulation aimed at improving food products has traditionally focused on decreasing unhealthy ingredients such as salt or sugar, a new move to aid food producers to include healthy ingredients is on the way. At a recent workshop organised by Euractiv it was discussed how the addition of, say, protein or fibre in processed food could be policy goal as well.
This newly released free eBook aims to provide the latest perspectives on the nutrition challenges that are now common to all societies worldwide. It argues that the case for good nutrition for all people, in all parts of the globe and throughout the entire life-cycle, is growing stronger and includes contributions from some of the world’s most influential and respected experts in the field.
This short blog by Michael Hallsworth from the UK’s Behavioural Insight Team, discusses the early impacts of the upcoming soft drinks levy by the UK government. This levy aims to reduce sugar intakes from drinks.
This systematic review confirms earlier findings that a number of well-categorised sustainable dietary patterns are also good for health outcomes. There was consistent evidence to suggest that diets higher in plant-based foods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts, and whole grains and lower in animal-based foods (especially red meat), are both healthier and associated with a lower impact on the environment.
Over the past half-century, the paradigm for agricultural development has been to maximize yields through intensifying production, especially for cereal crops. But achieving food security and building a healthy, resilient global food supply is about more than just the quantity of calories provided. New metrics of success and methods of evaluation are needed in order to measure progress towards meeting the world’s nutritional needs within environmental limits.
Sight and Life publishes a magazine which covers a wide range of nutrition related topics in developing countries. Their latest edition focused on food systems and can be found here.
In a new report, entitled ‘Fiscal policies for diet and the prevention of noncommunicable diseases’, the World Health Organisation (WHO) advocates subsidies and taxes on healthy and unhealthy foods respectively. One of the report’s major conclusions was
This study estimates the environmental impacts of what it terms discretionary foods - foods and drinks that do not provide nutrients that the body particularly needs. It finds that these foods account for 33-39% of food-related footprints in Australia.