Not a C.O.P.D. commercial for Symbicort
We can talk all we want about humans being omnivores and that we’ve evolved to eat meat, eggs, cheese, or plants. But the bottom line is that unless we shift to mostly plants pretty soon, Mother Nature is going to forced to take back her planet. That’s because what we’ve got is grossly unsustainable.
We can also talk about returning to the happy farms of yore (See Chipotle Grill Post) all we want—with the cows, pigs and chickens all frolicking about. But the reality of the matter is that those days are gone forever. We’re simply running out of resources; particularly land, water and energy and will soon no longer be able to sustain the extremely wasteful meat and dairy industry.
And it continues to get worse—not better. Millions of people in the developing world are beginning to choose our wasteful diet AND we’re adding a lot more people to the planet every year.
A little background on population. Humans have been around for about 200,000 years and the global population stood at about 250 million at at year One, A.D. It took us a little over 1800 years to reach one billion mark. Since then:
- 1927, we reached two billion. (adding one billion in 123 years)
- 1959, we reached three billion. (adding one billion in 32 years)
- 2011, we reached seven billion. (adding one billion every 13 years since 1959)
- 2050—at this rate, we’ll hit ten billion in 2050.
- A mere BLINK of history (just 211 years) we grow from one billion to seven billion.
It gets worse. Our population continues to grow at about 200,000 people per day and is projected to rise to 9 to 13 billion by 2050. At the same time, more people around the world are choosing our wasteful diet-style around the world every year.
When people coming out of poverty have a little money for the first time, they want to start eating like people in the United States and Europe. And we’re placing McDonald’s, Burger Kings and KFCs all over the world so that they can do just that. As I wrote in the Introduction of our book, we have a serious dilemma on our hands. From the last paragraph of the Introduction:
Fortunately, despite the incredible complexity of our current dilemma, the solution is refreshingly simple. All we have to do is educate ourselves, start making better choices about what we eat, and then share all that we have learned with everyone we care about.
I am convinced that there has never been anything more important in the history of the world.
The Bottom Line. EVERY YEAR—we’re adding 75 million people—we’re losing 32 million acres of forest—and we’re losing 24 million acres of arable land. Some of that forest goes to replace the arable land that we’re losing.
The world’s appetite continues to grow and we’re running out of land to feed it. Already, we’re burning down trees in the Amazon to make land for growing soybeans that are shipped to China to feed pigs. Burning trees in the Amazon — to feed pigs in China
When does this madness end? The United Nations knows that the rich Western diet is unsustainable, Mark Bittman of the New York Times knows it, and most readers of this blog know it—yet no world leaders have accepted the challenge of leading the global shift to a health-promoting, plant-based diet.
What do you think it will take for things to start moving in the right direction? I would like to think it would be leadership, but my guess is that it will take FORCE—the kind that will be delivered by gasoline at $10 a gallon.
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And if you like what 4Leaf eating is doing for you and your family, you might enjoy visiting our new “4Leaf Gear” store. From the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.
—J. Morris Hicks…blogging daily at HealthyEatingHealthyWorld.com
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