Here is a new word – syndemic. It means several epidemics that each amplify and intensify each other. Right now, the world is facing a major syndemic built on the confluence of three global dietary pandemics – obesity, undernutrition and climate change.
More than 2 billion people worldwide are obese, which has major health implications that are taxing medical systems across the globe. Meanwhile, nearly a billion people are undernourished including many people who are eating lots of empty calories. Climate change can also be considered a pandemic because of its sweeping effects on the health of humans and the natural systems we depend on.
Much or most of the blame for this lies in the major food systems that place far higher value in short-term corporate profits over longer-term human health. If governments began encouraging people to move away from the high-subsidy high-profit products like meat and dairy and toward a diverse range of plant-based based foods, it would go a long way toward mitigating all three pandemics.
Our source for this meme is a report published in The Lancet.