Rx for Global Food Information System. Complete Re-design

Like worn out cars—some SYSTEMS are beyond repair.

The system that I am talking about is the one that distributes information about what we should be eating. We need to know the absolute truth about this most vital topic—for our health, for our planet and for the longterm sustainability of humanity.

Dr. Campbell says we must study the entire human body to understand how nutrition works.

Dr. Campbell says we must study the entire human body to understand how nutrition works.

Our current system is failing us miserably. So what is that system? That’s the first part of the problem; it’s vast, complex and very difficult to define and even more difficult to change—even if that change would save lives, nurture our fragile environment and ensure our longterm survival.

In Dr. T. Colin Campbell’s latest book, WHOLE, Rethinking the Science of Nutrition, he did a thorough job of describing what seemed to me at first like an incredibly hopeless situation. But it planted the initial seed for the ideas expressed in this and a few of my earlier blogs. Where there’s a will there’s a way.

Why do I say seemingly hopeless? Because history would suggest that, if we don’t have a radical intervention, the needed change will come far too slowly—and probably too late. But there is hope; read on…

Our global system of scientists, dietitians, nutritionists, medical doctors, government agencies, food companies, pharmaceuticals, health insurance, hospitals and media—have all unknowingly worked together to create a highly destructive overall system. Our current system is destructive for our health and destructive for our planet. Dr. Richard Oppenlander sums up the problem as follows in Chapter 10 of his excellent book, Comfortably Unaware:

Comfortably UnawareWith health professionals continuing to advocate the consumption of meat and dairy products, true wellness for us and for our planet will be impossible to achieve. This brings light to the fact that we have a system of suppressed information and a misplaced trust in individuals and institutions that provide inaccurate and misleading information.

All this needs to change in order for progress to occur. The mismanagement of information or outright ignorance of reality regarding our food choices and the toll that it takes on our environment is the reason why we are at the point we are today. Click here to purchase Comfortably Unaware on Amazon.

Back to the old cars and broken systems. I have concluded that our current system is far beyond repair—no matter how much time we have available to fix it. There’s simply too much money, too much ignorance, and too much love for the typical western diet with meat and dairy three meals a day. Even if our system could be gradually repaired, I don’t think we have enough time. Dr. Stephen Emmott of Oxford and Microsoft in the UK agrees.

Given the urgent problems we face today with food shortages, global warming, species extinction and many other social and environmental disasters looming in the near future, my conclusion is that we must begin working with unprecedented urgency to get back on the right track. I’m talking about changes that happen in months—not years, decades or centuries. As we know from Stephen Emmott and Lester Brown, we’re going to run out of time to make the necessary changes well before the end of this century.

It’s time for a totally new system (car). When I first started driving in Mississippi in  1960 at the age of 15, my ultimate dream car was the 57 Chevy. If I could’ve picked any car, new or old, it would’ve been that car. It had it all—style, performance and reliability. Here’s what my dream car might look like today—56 years later.

921 Jalopy 57 Chevy

Obviously this former beauty is beyond repair.

Oh, you could spend a fortune and a few years to get her restored and running again—but if you were even remotely concerned about safety, efficiency, comfort and reliability; there is not a single part or piece of technology that you would want to use in the design of your brand new dream car. Rather, you would use the latest and greatest information, materials, and technologies to produce one that exceeded your wildest dreams. Something like this:

To do that for FOOD, we must start with a clean slate. We can’t try to modify or improve what we have today. We simply cannot wait for hundreds of thousands of scientists, doctors, politicians and corporate executives to un-learn all that they have been taught so that they can open their minds to the blinding flash of the obvious that “we’re eating the wrong food.” All of those people have a strong financial incentive to maintain the status quo and that’s simply not going to work for the future of my great grandchildren.

This futuristic Mercedes made me think of Elon Musk, whose TESLA was a total re-design. Just sent his assistant a link to this blog.

This futuristic Mercedes made me think of Elon Musk, whose TESLA was a total re-design. Just sent his assistant a link to this blog.

So what must we do? We must assemble the right combination of leaders, thinkers, teachers, communicators and philanthropists to start disseminating the truth about food within months, not years or decades. With the requisite amount of credibility, name recognition, power and funding—we can began changing food choices around the world very quickly.

I described one idea for getting this done in an earlier blog:

S.O.S. (Saving Our Species) — An urgently needed PLAN

The SOS Global Initiative is all about influencing the greatest number of people to move rapidly in the direction of a whole foods, plant-based diet. We propose to do that with a massive global effort aimed at educating, motivating and legislating. The expected budget for this never-ending effort will be in the billions, if not trillions. With the vast amount of opposition that we will face in the beginning, we’ll need billions just for legal fees.

But with the right plan and the right leaders, the money will be there. As the guys on Shark Tank always say, “we’re not investing in just an idea—no matter how great it might be. We need to see a well thought-out PLAN and a CEO that can make it happen. And we’d prefer that the “planned” initiative has already begun.”

For your convenience, here are a few of my blogs in chronological order that let up to the thinking in the one above, posted on 8-22-13.

Handy 5-piece take-charge-of-your-health kit—from Amazon.com

Why should we be eating mostly plants? The “big picture” in 4 minutes.

Want to find out how healthy your family is eating? Take our free 4Leaf Survey. It takes less than five minutes and you can score it yourself. After taking the survey, please give me your feedback as it will be helpful in the development of our future 4Leaf app for smartphones. Send feedback to jmorrishicks@me.com

International. We’re now reaching people in over 100 countries. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter or get daily blog notices by “following” us in the top of the right-hand column. For occasional updates, join our periodic mailing list.

J. Morris Hicks, working daily to promote health, hope and harmony on planet Earth.

To order more of my favorite books—visit our online BookStore now

For help in your own quest to take charge of your health, visit our 4Leaf page and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

Got a question? Let me hear from you at jmorrishicks@me.com. Or give me a call on my cell at 917-399-9700.

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—J. Morris Hicks, board member, T. Colin Campbell Foundation

About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
This entry was posted in Academic Freedom, Activism & Leadership, Food Policy, Sustainability. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Rx for Global Food Information System. Complete Re-design

  1. salbers12 says:

    Here’s a wrinkle on your too-far-gone-to-fix 57 Chevy analogy.
    Though your example has deteriorated beyond economic repair, there are 57 Chevys that are immaculate. They are fully operational today BECAUSE THEY WERE MAINTAINED and even improved.

    The same goes for our food system. Instead of being maintained and improved it has been wasted by special interests through grotesque distortions of the political process. If the politics of food is fixed then market force efficiencies will fix the system over time.

  2. Linda says:

    Dan Liese, We’ve run out of time to be “nice” and to take “baby steps.” It may make you uncomfortable to hear others speak forcefully about this issue, but that is what is required. The silent wheel does not “get the grease.”

    If you haven’t already, watch Dr. Oppenlander’s video, which Jim kindly provided in yesterday’s blog post.

  3. J. Stanfield (Jason) Hicks says:

    Dan – bottom line is that we have created a mess. Radical change will not occur until many (billions) understand and affect change. There is no sense in treading lightly; our children and grandchildren are at stake. On a positive note, 4LEAF FOR LIFE!

  4. Great post, Jim! 5+Stars.

    I re-posted today’s blog here, with some emphasizing:

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
    While I have your ear, again, your 4-minute video would be better without the background (almost foreground) music.

  5. Dan Liese says:

    I enjoy reading your blog posts but i must say (As a Friend) that you are much to negative!!! You tell your readers there is no chance and we are past saving etc etc. What i believe you are doing is stopping many people in their tracks for believing something can be done. So what do they do they just keep doing the same old same old…..
    May i suggest switching to a much more positive outlook and how each one can make a difference and also much less about JH what who or what you have done. As they so no cares about you until you show how much you care about them. My comments because i believe your concern is in the right place.

    • J. Morris Hicks says:

      So good friend Dan, are you the one that scored this blog a one star? Just know that I am doing all that I possibly can to solve the most serious issue that has ever faced the human species. Unfortunately, just advising everyone to do the best they can is not going to solve the problem. As Dr. Emmott says, we must have seriously radical change and we must have that change quickly. Unlike me and Dr. Campbell, he sees no possible solution. He thinks we’re doomed but he used a harsher term for it.

      We, on the other hand, see a plant-based pathway out of the mess that we humans have created. But that pathway will not yield a victory unless billions of people understand exactly what’s at stake. And we won’t get there by “pussy footing” around with the clarity and the reality of the truth. I hope this helps.

      For giving me a one-star rating for a realistic PLAN for saving our civilization, you have to buy lunch for me soon at your yacht club. Best, Jim

      PS: “Hoping” for a miracle while sleepwalking off a cliff is not a solution.

      • Dan Liese says:

        I see where you are going with this but all i am saying as a friend is that i feel you are “to much in your face” sort of guy and being rather negative in many of the blogs. I truly believe what you are saying is true i just think more bees are attracted with honey. (:
        More positive comments in your blog on how each person contributing helps solve the worlds problem and staying away from negativity.
        I guess to different ways of looking at getting the message out there.
        Your friend

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