While it would generally be great to see more people eating more quality plant-based foods, which I mentioned in my last 2 articles, there are more than a few problems with this report and the dietary recommendations it makes.
1) There are a lot of published studies which refute the studies they cite as evidence of their reasonings for their recommendations.
2) Nutrition researchers have analysed the nutrient breakdown of the proposed global diet, which was easy to do as they published the quantity and calories of each food item they recommend. They found many major deficiencies in nutrients if you were to follow their advice! Some of the deficiencies include vitamin B12, vitamin D, vitamin K, sodium, potassium, calcium, iron, omega-3 fats, protein and amino acids, and more! Just one nutrient deficiency will result in health symptoms and diseases, but this many is a health disaster. This objective of the group to provide a healthy diet has failed miserably!
3) There is no one single diet which works for everyone. We've seen that over the past few decades with government food guidelines all over the world, and the epidemics of chronic diseases are being caused by these guidelines that are too slow to respond to good quality scientific studies.
4) The massive amount of carbohydrates, especially refined and processed carbs (sugary foods and grains) in the EAT recommendations is as bad or worse than what we already have today. For example, they recommend a massive 811 calories or 32% of your daily food intake should be hi-carb grains, and more carbs from starchy vegetables, and another 5% of your daily intake from sugar! This will simply increase the rates of chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer.
5) The commission forgets that animal crops rejuvenate the soil with their manure, ironically needed by plants to grow! But plant crops are grown in ever-depleted soils, or are topped up with artificial nutrients instead, not to mention the toxic herbicides, pesticides, fungicides and more that the crops and soil is exposed to. This is not sustainable farming nor environmentally friendly.
6) They recommend many unhealthy fats and oils, including palm oil, which is NOT environmentally friendly as many would know! The palm oil industry is well known for destroying native rainforests to grow specific palm trees. I thought the EAT-Lancet concept was about being sustainable and environmentally friendly?! No, it's not. More native rainforests will be cut down to produce more palm oil from this recommendation, especially when palm oil makes up 2% of this diet (compared to red meats at 1%!).
7) Many of their assumptions are still based on old and incorrect beliefs (based on poor quality studies done in the past), that saturated fats are bad and cause heart disease (which studies show they don't!), or that diabetes is caused by red meat consumption (it's not!), or that salt is bad for you (wrong again), or eggs are bad because they are high in cholesterol which is another heart disease risk (it's not!), and other fallacies. As a result, this new diet is just the same old incorrect information, but then made much, much worse.
8) For many decades we have been told that we all need to eat and drink lots of dairy products every day, to get plenty of calcium for healthy bones. The current perception is that dairy is a good source of calcium, which it actually isn't! But suddenly, the EAT-Lancet report says that a World Health Organisation review has shown that regions with low dairy intake actually have lower bone fracture rates! So now dairy should be reduced. I've been saying for a while that dairy is a poor source of calcium and many plant-based foods have a higher % of calcium per gram! Hence by eating more quality plant foods, you can get sufficient calcium in your diet, but this new diet provides only 55% of your daily requirement of calcium!
9) Meat makes up just a tiny 6% of this new diet, of which only 1% is red meat (just 7 grams per day!), or 2% for chicken and fish. There is no good quality evidence for this! This decision is based on personal bias against meat by 31 out of the 37 committee participants (being 84%) being vegetarians or vegans themselves.
10) There have been NO studies done on this proposed diet! NONE! So how can they possibly be recommending it when they haven't actually tested it?! They have put this recommendation together from a committee looking at different published studies on individual nutrients, but then not actually researching their recommendations as a whole to prove that it will be safe, beneficial and effective in meeting their objectives for our health and that of the environment.
The EAT-Lancet global diet is, in my opinion from reading their recommendations, pretty much more of the same old useless dietary guidelines advice based on the same old nutritional fallacies, but with significantly less meat being recommended and that being replaced by more carbs which ironically will cause even more problems.
Whenever there is a major push for a one-size-fits-all approach to health and nutrition, and where there is no scientific proof, it must be ignored! It simply will not work!
The EAT-Lancet diet should be renamed as the Fat-Lancet diet, because the deficiencies it has, and the high amount of carbs from sugar and grains, and it's reliance on unhealthy fats, will cause more disease and obesity, a worse environmental impact, and more profits to the medical system and the people involved with this proposal.