The best health act for the climate and yourself – this is how you reduce your consumption of meat and dairy products

A study published in the prestigious journal Science a few years ago said that to avoid dangerous global warming, meat consumption must be reduced by as much as 90 percent in the West.

That would mean, on average, 75% less beef, 90% less pork and half as many eggs as at present. The most important thing is to drop the consumption of red meat and especially processed meats. According to the recommendation of Evira, the current Food Agency, red meat, ie beef, pork and lamb, and meat products should be eaten at a maximum of 500 grams per week, ie practically about 70 grams per day.

According to the University of Oxford, a vegan diet is probably the single most significant way to reduce greenhouse gases, acidification, eutrophication, and land and water use.

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Vegetable day once a week

The natural first step to a healthier and more ecological life is to spend a vegetable day once a week. Then no meat is eaten at all.

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With the help of nutrition experts, US News & World Report has ranked 40 different diets based on, for example, heart health and blood sugar control. In this list, the Mediterranean diet came in first with equal points to the DASH diet of the same type. With a Mediterranean diet, people live an average of six years longer than a standard Western diet.

The climate also praises these dietary choices. Switching to a vegetable-rich Mediterranean diet saturated with poultry, fish and olive oil could reduce global warming by 15% by 2050. This equates to a billion cars leaving you.

What about meat and milk instead?

  • MEAT can be completely or partially replaced with vegetable protein in familiar recipes. For example, half of a minced meat package can be put in the frost and this portion replaced with soybean meal, squash, oatmeal or beef. The chicken can be replaced with soy strips or Oumph made from soybeans.
  • For dairy products, it is very easy to replace cream with oat or soy-based products. The production of a liter of cow’s milk requires 13 times more land area and produces three times higher climate emissions than the production of a liter of soy milk. Oat-based products are probably even better for the environment.

Expert: Annukka Valkeapää, Conservation Expert, WWF.

This article appeared in Good Health. As a subscriber, you can read all numbers free of charge from the service.

Source: Hyvä Terveys by

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