Most dietitians agree that a healthier global diet would include people eating more fruits and vegetables. Just one problem with dishing out this advice: The world’s agricultural system does not grow enough fruits and vegetables to adequately feed a rising global population, according to Canadian-led research published in the journal PLOS ONE. Humans overproduce grains, sugars and fats at the expense of fruits and vegetables, which makes it nearly impossible for everyone to follow dietary guidelines.

The study authors also stressed that a concerted effort by farmers to grow more fruits and vegetables should go hand in hand with reducing livestock production, to limit the agricultural sector’s greenhouse gas emissions. But if we want to boost broccoli and apple production, then we’ll also need better food distribution methods—to reduce the serious global problem of perishable-food waste.

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

Matthew Kadey, MS, RD, is a James Beard Award–winning food journalist, dietitian and author of the cookbook Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sport + Adventure (VeloPress 2016). He has written for dozens of magazines, including Runner’s World, Men’s Health, Shape, Men’s Fitness and Muscle and Fitness.

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