Tuesday, March 3, 2015
Professor Antonia Trihopoulou will hold a lecture on "Our traditional diet: Yesterday as a model for the future" at the Museum of Cycladic Art (4 Neophytou Douka Athens) Thursday, March 5, at 19:00.
Food production and consumption patterns have changed in ways that affect both critical ecosystems and human nutrition. The rapid rate of loss of food biodiversity, ecosystem degradation and eating diversions, prompt us to rethink rural procedures and diets.
Out of the eight key development objectives of the International Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) since the beginning of this millennium, the seventh refers to "ensuring environmental sustainability". This objective can be achieved through the integration of sustainable development principles into national strategies and national programs. During a recent conference of FAO, special emphasis was given to the role of promoting traditional local food as a step towards sustainable rural development. It was also noted that the variety of food we eat combines with environmental biodiversity.
A special mention should be made to traditional Mediterranean diet, a diet that promotes health and includes a plethora of traditional foods. Highlighting Mediterranean diet as a model of healthy and sustainable diets helps in conserving biodiversity. In 2010, it was stated in a report of FAO on sustainable diets that: "Countries, societies and cultures that maintain their own traditional diets systems are able to preserve local traditional origins and variety both in cultivation and in animal species. They also tend to have a lower prevalence of chronic diseases related to diet. Mediterranean diet is a clear example".
Mediterranean diet has been characterized and studied in relation to various aspects of health in such a way that could be used as a model for studying other potentially viable diets and as a reference point for addressing some of the challenges facing many of the developed and developing areas of the world.