In order to feed the increasing world population in the future, it is necessary that we produce and consume food in a different way. Food production is responsible for 25% of greenhouse gas emissions and contributes to the over-exploitation and pollution of the Earth. That is a threat to people's health. A more plant-based diet therefore also contributes to our health.
Government policies therefore focus on the transition to more plant-based proteins and less animal proteins (also known as the protein transition. They concluded that a more plant-based diet better meets their dietary guidelines. They also state that it is possible for most Dutch people to eat less animal products without developing nutrient deficiencies.
To eat healthier and more sustainably, you can use some general tips: don't eat too much, don't waste food, limit dairy and meat, and replace meat with plant-based protein sources such as legumes, nuts, soy and grains. According to the Health Council, the more plant-based diet they propose (60% of protein from plant sources and 40% from animal sources, instead of the current 40% plant-based and 60% animal) could reduce the environmental impact of our food consumption by 25% to lower.
Food scientists Marjolein Visser and Ingeborg Brouwer wrote an article in the Dutch Journal of Medicine (in Dutch), containing more explanation about the advice and practical advice for eating as sustainably and healthily as possible. She also joined the podcast series of the Dutch Health Council to tell more about the protein transition.